Decorative Arts student from Nottingham wins UK heat of SDC International Design Competition

A Decorative Arts student from Nottingham has been named the winner of the UK final of the Society of Dyers and Colourists’ (SDC) annual International Design Competition and will go forward to the grand final to be held in Mumbai, India in November.

Rebecca Diggle, a second year student at Nottingham Trent University won the UK heat against four other finalists, who had all won regional heats. The competition, which is sponsored by Clariant, is open to undergraduates on fashion/textile design courses and asked the students to submit an entry which demonstrates the creative and original use of colour in either fashion or textiles.

The UK final took place in Bradford where the students put their design boards on show in an exhibition which was judged by a panel of experts including designer Kathy Lewiston, Janine Burrows from Tigerprint and Ros Talbot from Skopos Design. Rebecca was presented with her prize and certificate by SDC’s new President, Richard Straughan.

This year, the theme the students were asked to include was ‘Fashion for the Future?’ in the approach to their design and written statement which accompanies the submission and explains their inspiration. Rebecca’s winning piece entitled ‘Up cycling – Reuse – Regeneration’ explored the reuse of materials. She used end of role fabrics and fibres to create a collection that is a fusion of materials, textures and colour. She took weaving as the inspiration for her project. As a traditional approach to textiles, she wanted to show the nomadic and folkloric style through the weave. Her visual research was also strongly inspired by both Alpine and Scandinavian landscape. A film she saw about the melting glaciers and the effects of this on the earth particularly influenced her.

Rebecca commented: “Chasing Ice, (Jeff Orlowski, 2012) was a shocking but beautiful documentary and the images of the ice were visually stunning. The patterns created by the ice were very interesting and I wanted to replicate the subtlety in parts of my weaves. The competition was a great opportunity to research colour and combine this with my interest in sustainable materials. I am looking forward to the amazing experience of the final in India in November.”

Rebecca will now go on to compete against winners from Australia, Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Pakistan, Singapore, Thailand and South Africa at the grand final which will be held in India in November 2013.

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 £1000 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.

Comments Graham Clayton, Chief Executive of the SDC: “We’d like to congratulate Rebecca and wish her the best of luck in representing the UK in the grand final in November. This competition is a fantastic way of exploring the innovative ideas used by some of the best student designers who really embrace the use of colour in their designs.”

Photos are available on request.

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