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SDC International Design Competition – UK final at Material World

20140617-DSCF8453Daniel Matthews, a final year Surface Design student at Huddersfield University has won the UK final of the SDC International Design Competition. He goes forward to the grand final which will be held in China later this year.

The UK final took place as part of Material World, held at the Houses of Parliament in London. This prestigious event had been fully booked for several weeks and brought together MPs and Lords, alongside academia and industry, to highlight and discuss the challenges and opportunities for the textile industry in the UK. It included several keynote speakers.

Daniel, a final year student at the university, won the heat against competition from four other finalists, who had all won their regional heats. The judges were impressed by the work of all the finalists, who represent the very best talent from UK universities. The competition is open to fashion and textile design undergraduates, and challenges the students to ‘demonstrate the creative and original use of colour in either fashion or textiles’. This year, the theme the students were asked to include was ‘Material World’.

The judges (with the students in the image at the top) were Karen Haller, a leading international authority in the field of applied colour psychology, Celia Joicey, Head of the Fashion and Textiles Museum, and Ciara Crossan, senior designer at Haddow Interiors.  We’d like to thank all our judges – they had a difficult task selecting the winner from five very different entries, but they were fantastic and gave positive and useful feedback to all the students.

The judges commented that Daniel’s entry, which was entitled ‘Intertwined Texture’ showed ‘a stand-out interpretation of the brief, literally weaving strips of colour taken from swatches of the city of London’s architecture. Experimental use of multiple technical processes leading to a highly commercial finish’.

Daniel was representing SDC’s North of England region. The other finalists were as follows.

20140617-DSCF8463The runner up was Hannah Tatnell (photo left) from Loughborough University, winner of the Midlands region heat. The judges said her entry was ‘a stunning journey through the dark underbelly of the natural world with an unexpected twist of colour. A gifted a talented illustrator and commercial artist’.

20140617-DSCF8476Anja Alexandersdottir (photo right) from Heriot-Watt University was the winner of the Scottish heat. The judges thought her work showed ‘a wonderful combination of colour with material designed to let in light with subtle hues. An intriguing interpretation of the brief concerned with how to exclude the material world and create a more beautiful environment’.

Anna Winkley (photo bottom left) from Winchester College of Art represented the West of England and South Wales. The judges commented as follows: ‘taking the natural world and precious stones for inspiration, a stunning collection of fashion prints with a keen eye for the nuances of mixing colour and pattern. A sophisticated designer with the potential to go far’.

The fifth finalist was Claire Hunsinger (photo bottom right) from University for the Creative Arts, and winner of the London region heat. Her entry showed ‘an innovative and experimental response to the brief with excellent technical skill and understanding. The use of warm and cool colours was carried through to the thermal properties of the fabric. A name to listen out for in future’.

20140617-DSCF848020140617-DSCF8459Daniel goes forward to the grand final, which takes place in China in November 2014, in partnership with Huizhou University. He will compete against the winners from Australia/New Zealand, Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Pakistan, Portugal, Singapore, Thailand and South Africa.

Each of the global finalists’ work will be exhibited at the event and judged by an industry panel. The global winner will receive a cash prize of £1,000 and the prestigious Veronica Bell trophy. The trophy is in honour of the late Dr Veronica Bell (an SDC past-president) to acknowledge excellence in the field of colour and design.

As the leading educational charity dedicated to advancing the science of colour worldwide, SDC encourages the creative use of colour in fashion and textile design and is a committed supporter of up and coming young designers. We’d like to congratulate all the finalists and wish Daniel every success at the grand final in China.

Are you an undergraduate fashion or textile design student from one of our participating countries? Why not enter the SDC International Design Competition? Some of the country heats for 2014 have yet to take place, and the 2015 competition will be launching shortly.

A gallery of images from Material World is available on SDC’s website.  Our thanks again to the judges, who had a really difficult task choosing between five outstanding students.

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