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From Huddersfield to Shanghai – Making it Personal!

Congratulations to Laura Ensinger from the University of Huddersfield, the first of this year’s finalists to be announced in the SDC International Design Competition 2016.

The UK final took place as part of SDC’s annual Day of Celebration at the magnificent Merchant Adventurers’ Hall in York. The competition is a key part of SDC’s educational and charitable remit and a vital part of SDC’s relationship with universities and colleges internationally.

121Laura is studying for BA/BSc Hons Textiles with Surface Design and is due to graduate this year. Laura said “I am delighted to have my work selected and the chance to share a project focused on colour that I feel so passionately about. I’m excited about the opportunities that this competition may present at the start of my career, and I’m looking to take full advantage of the wealth of information and experiences provided by industry professionals that I meet”.

Laura goes forward to represent the UK at the grand final which takes place in November 2016, hosted by the Shanghai University of Engineering Science (SUES) in China.

Her competition entry is entitled ‘Personal Expression’. The judges commented: “Designs all about colour incorporating the theme ‘Making it Personal’. Good vision and commercially viable idea. Stand out presentation both visually and verbally. Beautiful work!”

120The finalists, all of whom had won one of the UK regional heats, were:

  • Hannah Rumsey, UCA Farnham, representing the London region
  • Heejin Son, Nottingham Trent University, representing the Midlands
  • Zara Nugent, Edinburgh College of Art, representing Scotland
  • Rachel Thomas, Falmouth University, representing the West of England and South Wales
  • Laura Ensinger, University of Huddersfield, representing the North of England

The runner up was Heejin Son, a BA Fashion Knitwear student from Nottingham Trent University. She was praised by the judges for “interesting combinations of colour from an unusual source. A unique idea for an adaptable garment that explored the brief in a commercial way”.

117The focus for the competition is colour – to demonstrate the creative, imaginative and original use of colour in fashion or textiles. In addition, each year the competition has a theme which the students need to incorporate. This year’s theme, developed by Brian Hinnigan from Johnstons of Elgin is ‘Making it Personal’, and focuses on the challenge of making unique, individualised products within a bulk manufacturing process with minimum waste.

Our thanks go to the judges:

  • Laduma Ngxokolo, South African knitwear designer and previous winner of the SDC International Design Competition, who now has his own label MaXhosa by Laduma
  • Judith Coates, Head of Design at Abraham Moon and Sons
  • designer Emma Sewell, Wallace and Sewell

156Are you a fashion or textile design student? It’s not too late to enter! Many of the regional heats are still to take place. The competition is open to fashion and textile design undergraduates in the following countries: Australia/New Zealand, Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Pakistan, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand and the UK. Check out the website for details.

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