Component One

Component Two

Apparel Design Samples

Comparative Flammability Graph

What is Modacrylic fiber?

Abstract from Prelude Project

Research Report

Mind Map Process Plan (Design Screen)

Team Profile

Team Assessment

Works Cited


Task One:

Highly Flame Resistant Modacrylic Apparel for the Elderly

Five year Production and Marketing Projections


Consumer target group:  Adults age 65 and over living independently

According to data collected and analyzed by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) and the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS), there were 4007 fire-related fatalities in the United States in 2001.  Risk of death or injury by fire increases dramatically with age:  thirty-one percent of those people who died in 2001 of fire-related causes were over the age of 65.  On average, more than 1,000 Americans aged 65 and older die in home fires each year, and more than 2000 are injured.  The elderly are at least 2.5 times more likely to die in a residential fire than the rest of our population.  The "oldest old," adults over age 85, are four times more likely to die in a fire than members of other age groups.


 Living conditions contribute to the fire safety of our oldest citizens.  Only 4.5% of our senior population live in nursing homes.  Most of the older adults live in individual residences where fire safety-related materials and procedures are not subject to outside authority, as they are in institutional settings.  Nursing homes are required to meet specific health and building codes, and to be inspected for compliance regularly.  Homes are subject to residential building construction codes, but inspection and enforcement of these codes after building occupation is practically non-existent.  As a result, older Americans at greatest risk of fire-related injury or death are probably those who live independently and must engage in certain activities in daily life that put them in contact with heat and/or flame.  This conclusion is supported with data collected by the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS) which documents the activity of fire victims at the time of injury or death.



Market demand projections

38,000 garments at time of start-up with 2% growth per year based upon demographic data and increased product awareness over time:


 Our nation is aging.  In 2000 people 65 and older comprised 12 percent of  America's population.  By 2020, the U.S. Census Bureau projects that the proportion of older Americans will rise to 16 percent, and that by 2050, there will be more than 86 million older Americans, comprising 21% of the nation's population.  The oldest of the old are the fastest growing segment of the aged population.  By 2050 it is estimated that there will be 20 million adults over the age of 85 years.  Since it has been shown that older citizens are 2.5 times more likely to die in a fire today, this demographic phenomenon called the "graying of America" can only result in increased fire risk among the elderly.


 Our estimations of product demand are based on projections that in year 2010 there will be 40 million people age 65 or older living in the United States, with approximately 38 million living independently.  If only a tenth of one percent buys one piece of modacrylic flame resistant clothing, that is a demand for 38,000 garments in the first year.  As the aged population  grows as predicted over time, marketing efforts will simultaneously be reaching new customers, while existing customers may continue to buy additional product; therefore we conservatively project an annual increase in demand of 2% per year.  We project a demand of 38,760 by the year 2019.


 Impact on the marketplace:

Because modacrylic textiles appropriate for everyday apparel are not produced in the variety and quantity needed for our label, our business will have an impact on both the textile and clothing manufacturing marketplaces in America.  To maintain high standards of quality control and to enrich the apparel manufacturing industry in the United States, both the modacrylic textiles and the assembled garments will be made in America.


 This product line will also have an impact on marketing and retail business sectors.  Our target customer is the elderly person living independently, and also their caregivers and loved ones who may purchase garments for the benefit of the wearers.  The Consumer Products Safety Commission has successfully demanded that children's sleepwear be flame retardant for decades; however, the need for elderly people to dress in flame resistant clothing is not widely known or recognized.  Significant marketing efforts will be essential to reach both the end wearer customers, and the associated market of consumers who may have power to purchase garments for them.


 While the concept of flame resistant modacrylic apparel for the elderly is original in the sense that it is not currently available, it may not be an idea specific enough to be protected by patent law.  We anticipate that with our company's success, competition will grow, so we will have to create great brand loyalty to hold and increase our market share.  Between design, development, textile production, garment manufacturing and marketing, we predict this line of apparel will create an additional 199 jobs in the manufacturing, marketing and retail sectors over the next five years.



Research, Design and Development workforce:  12 people

These people will design the product line (textiles and garments) for men and women and receive feedback from the user population, manufacturing process managers , and retail outlets in order to monitor and modify product design and effectiveness over the next five years.  The initial first product run will include 25 individual designs (11 garments for men, 14 garments for women) which will be produced in multiple colors and sizes.


 Textile Manufacturing workforce:  35 workers in plant.       

In order for an existing textile plant to be able to produce 42 distinct modacrylic fabrics in a variety of colors and weaves, an initial workforce of 35 employees will be required.  There will be computer programmers, fiber chemists, machine operators, material packers and shippers, and order managers.

Garment Manufacturing Workforce:  10 workers in a garment assembly plant will produce on average 15 garments each per day and work 250 days per year.

Warehousing and Distribution Workforce:  5 workers will package and inventory an average of 30 garments per day to manage to production distribution nationwide.

Five-year marketing workforce requirements:  137 people

A sizable workforce will be required to promote the clothing line to the target purchasing population. 

Strategic Marketing Group:  5 people

This team will name the company and individual garment styles, patterns and colors.  They will also be responsible for developing and managing the overall marketing plan, which will include the following:

Retail Outlets Sales force:  50 people

These representatives will work to design, develop, and manage retail sales of the clothing line in existing department stores nationwide over the next five years.  The retail sales team will be broken into five regions nationwide.

Online Sales force:  25 people

These salespeople will design, develop and manage the company website, an information and sales portal for promotion, consumer information, and online sales.


Direct Mail Sales force:  25 people

These salespeople will design, develop and manage catalog sales, with the understanding that many elderly consumers are unable to shop in retail outlets, and are unable or unwilling to make web purchases.


Hospital/Physicians Sales force:  10 people

These marketing representatives will provide samples of garments and promotional information to physicians, particularly geriatric practices, to ensure that doctors and their patients are aware of the availability and importance of flame resistant clothing for independent living elderly people.

Elder Care Providers Sales force:  10 people

These sales people will identify and contact institutions nationwide that provide care for elderly people to increase awareness of the importance and availability of flame resistant clothing for the elderly.


 Government and Social Services Outreach Sales force:  2 people

These sales people will work with federal, state and local health and human services organizations to increase product and brand awareness for officials who provide public assistance to elderly citizens.


 Media Relations:  10 people

These public relations specialists will work to develop a conventional advertising campaign to increase public awareness of the clothing line and its benefits through all media outlets:  print, radio, television and internet.


Task Two: Two Available Degree Programs



Institution:  Cornell University, College of Human Ecology

Department:  Fiber Science and Apparel Design

Degree Program:  Master of Fiber Science

Description: Fiber Science Graduate Programs 

The Fiber Science Program focuses on the study of fibrous materials and their use in a variety of conventional and non-conventional applications.

With the help of a Special Committee, each student in the field plans an individualized course of study linking his or her background and interests with the extensive educational resources of Cornell University. In addition, two minor areas of study are required of Ph.D. students and one minor area is required of M.S. and M.A. students. Often students select minors in the physical sciences, engineering, economics, marketing, computer science, communication, or other fields within the Graduate School. Students may select minors depending on their previous specializations; educational preparation in textiles, or polymer science, and/or apparel; mathematics, chemistry, physics, or economics.

Students may undertake research in such areas as high-performance fibers and fiber-reinforced composites, detergency and surface chemistry, textile materials in geotechnical and biomedical applications, polymers for electronics, and textile dye chemistry.

The current research areas of faculty members include surface modification of high-performance fibers for composites, novel techniques for fiber and polymer morphology studies, protective clothing for agricultural, industrial, and medical workers, electrostatic technique for fiber spinning, fully degradable "green" composites, reinforcement of cement concrete by fibers, synthesis of biologically active biodegradable fibers, role of free radicals in degradation of biodegradable fibers, novel chemical synthesis of degradable polymers, and fibers for tissue engineering and regeneration. Fiber science is actively pursued by faculty from various departments. These include the department of textiles and apparel, chemical engineering, chemistry, civil engineering, materials science and engineering, and theoretical and applied mechanics.




Institution:  Cornell University, College of Human Ecology

Department:  Fiber Science and Apparel Design

Degree Program:  Ph. D. Apparel Design

Description: Apparel Design Graduate Programs

Apparel Design provides a unique approach to graduate study through its focus on conducting independent research in aspects of apparel design such as fashion theory, functional apparel, sizing and anthropometrics, cultural and historic aspects of dress and textile design, apparel industry issues, CAD, CAPP, and other technologies, etc. We help you craft your graduate research program based on your interests and goals to address significant issues of apparel design within the context of aesthetics, production, function, and the meanings of dress. The apparel design faculty has research and industry-based expertise from design conception through production and analysis. The fiber science faculty offers supporting courses in fabric structure, color, and functional characteristics for apparel students and contributes technical expertise to thesis/dissertation research. You will work with the professor with whom your research aligns and take courses with other department faculty and in other fields of study related to your thesis/dissertation research. Unlike undergraduate studies, graduate work focuses on independent research. At the Masters level, you identify a research focus and select courses that will prepare you to conduct the research. At the PhD level you are also expected to take coursework that will give you a broad base in all aspects of the Apparel Design discipline, along with courses that will help you develop your research topic. Your apparel design research immerses you in a problem-solving endeavor using qualitative and/or quantitative methods that link elements of apparel and textile design in the context of aesthetics, function, technique, and the meaning of dress. These research projects often have an interdisciplinary perspective that reach across the university and to private industry and government. For more detailed information on the different areas of apparel design research conducted at Cornell visit individual faculty webpages, and contact us to discuss your interests.




Task Three: Invent a Degree

 Department:  Design and Environmental Analysis

Degree Program:  Master's Degree/Ph. D. in Design for Gerantological Ecology

Description:  This graduate program combines the study of gerontology with ergonomics, environmental psychology, facility planning, industrial design, and apparel design.  Scholars and professionals rooted in both science and design are needed to understand how such complex facilities as workplaces, hospitals, schools and residential communities should be designed, furnished and equipped to promote health, well-being and facilitate human performance.

To fill this need, Cornell will offer a new doctorate in human behavior and design (HBD), the first program of its kind in New York state, beginning fall 2009.

Offered in the College of Human Ecology's Department of Design and Environmental Analysis (DEA), the program will draw on DEA's specialties in ergonomics; social, cognitive and environmental psychology; facility planning and management; and interior and industrial design. It will be the only program nationwide that is housed in a department equally represented by social scientists and designers. Its graduates will be well positioned to become scholars who teach and conduct research at colleges and universities; research scientists in laboratories in industry; and consultants for workplace and hospital planning and design firms.

"The timing of this program could not be better given the explosion of interest in environmental issues generally and, more specifically, in the relationship between the planning, design and management of the built environment and health and well-being," says DEA department chair Franklin Becker. "The doctorate will create a vital new pipeline into academia, business, design and government for graduates with expertise in areas such as product and patient safety, human performance, health and design, senior living, sustainability and healthy communities. These are pressing social issues, and we know the research generated by our Ph.D. students has the potential to make a real difference."

Becker points out that HBD is an applied science that integrates theory and research from the social sciences and design to meet human needs for environments that not only provide shelter and support safe, healthy and productive behaviors, but also are efficient and sustainable.

The program will begin with one to three students in its first several years, increasing to possibly five students over the next decade, Becker says.

"Cornell is unique in having a curriculum that integrates innovative approaches to facility planning and environmental design with the scientific analysis of human behavior as it both shapes and is shaped by the built environment within which it occurs," Becker adds. "This strong, integrated program is unique in that both the scientific and creative elements of the program are housed within the same department, and can directly draw from and build on each other."