SDC International Design Competition 2018

Start Date: 20 June 2017 12:00am

End Date: 26 November 2018 12:00am

Type: Undergraduate fashion/textile design students


(image from 2016 competition)

Competition Update: This competition is now closed!

Regional heats have taken place across the world and finalists from each participating country will travel to London for the Grand Final on 26th November where the winner will be selected by an international panel of fashion and textile industry professionals. Find out who our lucky finalists are here!

Our 2019 competition ‘Colour and Nature‘ is now open for entries.

Theme for 2018: Colour Communication

Take a look at the downloads in the documents tab for the competition brief and step by step guidance on what to do next. Download your entry form.

The International Design Competition is SDC’s annual flagship competition, engaging with hundreds of students, universities and designers globally. The competition helps the entrants develop their understanding of colour and the challenges around sustainability in the textile supply chain. The competition is free to enter and attracts hundreds of entries worldwide. The theme for 2018 is ‘colour communication’.

SDC is delighted to announce that Archroma is the new major sponsor for the 2018 competition. The links to The Color Atlas by Archroma® are key to both the competition theme and the accompanying educational package.

Colour Communication

With a global textile supply chain, communication can stretch over different continents and languages so using the right tools is key.

Selecting colors from the Color Atlas by Archroma® streamlines communication by having engineered colour standards and related technical information readily available to everyone in the supply chain.

Color Atlas

The Color Atlas by Archroma® was created to easily bring colour creativity and manageability to an entire new level for stylists and designers, brands and retailers, and their suppliers.

The Color Atlas by Archroma® is a system that includes:

  • A “physical library” consisting of over 4,300 colours, in six volumes.  The new accordion-fold design of the library volumes is an innovative step away from traditional three-ring binders, for quick and intuitive browsing of the cotton poplin samples.
  • A mobile-friendly Color Atlas Online with exciting features such as “colour-on-the-go” which allows you to capture an image using your smart phone, and identify the closest Color Atlas shades.
  • Engineered Colour Standards connected to robust online technical databases via mobile communication technology.

Competition Brief

The competition brief is available to download from the documents tab. Also available to download are quick summary documents of how to set up a free account on SDC’s Colour Network, and how to use the Color Atlas.


The winner of the heat in each country will be invited to attend the global grand final. The global winner will receive £1,000 cash and the prestigious Veronica Bell Trophy.

Who can enter?

Open to fashion and textile design undergraduates in: Australia, Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Thailand the USA and the United Kingdom.


  • work should be mounted on a maximum of four boards of up to A2 size. One of your boards must show the colour palette, using colours from the Color Atlas.
  • a typewritten statement on one A4 sheet – no more than 500 words!
  • you are encouraged to bring one extra piece of work to the judging heat, this could be a finished article or a sample garment.

How to Enter

  • Download an entry form, or contact your regional co-ordinator. All entries must be endorsed by the relevant course tutor/ leader.
  • Some countries put a limit on the number of entries per university – please clarify this with your regional contact. One tutor should be identified as the contact per university and be responsible for pre-selecting the students and submitting an entry form.
  • Entry forms can be submitted by email to SDC or direct to the regional contact.
  • Please don’t post your design boards. In most instances, students will be invited to the regional heat to present their entries in person.


September 2017: Official competition launch.  Tutors can submit entry forms at any time.

From Feb 2018: Regional heats take place and country finalists announced

November 2018: Grand Final takes place and global winner announced

United Kingdom Regional Heats

Five regional heats have taken place in the UK between February and April 2018 – please see details in the Timetable tab above. The UK final was held on 27th April in York – the winner Yasemin Yasar from Nottingham Trent University will represent the UK at the Grand Final in November.

 Judging Heats Outside The UK

Judging heats will take place in each participating country and the winner selected will represent their country in November at the Grand Final

  • Pakistan Heat – held 3rd May – winner Laiba Hassan, Hunerkada College of Visual & Performing Arts
  • USA Heat – held 1st May – winner Michael Vargas, Fashion Institute of Technology, New York
  • Ireland Heat – held 15th June – winner Claire Malone, National College of Art & Design, Dublin
  • Bangladesh Heat – held 3rd September- winner Md Parvez, BGMEA University of Fashion & Technology
  • India heat- held 24th August – Samrudhi Parkar from Dr. B.M.N. College of Home Science , Mumbai
  • Singapore – 20th September – Li Yannan, Raffles College of Higher Education
  • Australia /New Zealand – 18th September, Lucy Polson, Massey University New Zealand
  • China Heat – held 8th July – winner Mingcheng Zhang, School of Textile and Garment, Anhui Polytechnic University
  • Thailand – held 30th August – Banjamas Buakarn, Chiang Rai Rajabhat University. Chiangrai Province.
  • Portugal Heat- held 20th July – winner Margarida da Silva Freitas, University of Minho
  • Hong Kong – held 14th August – winner Tam Lok-yee (Lorraine), The Technological and Higher Education Institute of Hong Kong
  • South Africa – 30th August – Shelby Horn, Nelson Mandela University
  • Sri Lanka Heat – 17th August- Ruth Weerasinge, Academy of Design

For information about the 2019 judging heats or if you have any questions, please contact the relevant country co-ordinator (contact details are below).

Any queries?

For general enquiries, please email:

For country-specific enquiries, please email your regional contact:

Australia/NZ: Henry Orlinski:

Bangladesh: Afsana Ferdousi:

China: Shangshang Li:

Hong Kong: Chi-Wai Kan:

India: Vaishali Deokar,:

Ireland: Paul Santokhi:

South Africa: Heidi Alcock:

Thailand: Wiwat Hirunpruk:

United Kingdom: Angela Ackroyd:

Pakistan: Dr Muhammad Mohsin:

Singapore: Dro Tan:

Portugal: Joana Cunha:

Sri Lanka: Samangi Rodrigo:

USA: Sean Cormier: 









The timetable is as follows:

September 2017:

Official competition launch and brief available to download. Tutors can submit entry forms at any time.

From Feb 2018:

Regional heats take place and country finalists announced.  Some countries, such as the UK hold a number of regional heats, others just have one judging heat. The dates of heats vary across participating countries.

United Kingdom Regional Heats

Five regional heats will take place in the UK between February and April 2018 – please see details below.  Institutions should submit the names and details of up to three entrants in advance via the downloadable entry form. Entrants have until the day of the judging heat to work on their entries and will be invited to present their designs to the judging panel at the relevant regional heat. The winner of each UK regional heat will attend the UK final which will take place during our Day of Celebration on 27th April.

Midlands Region heat: 7th March 2018 @ Nottingham Trent University

London heat: 8th March @ The Fashion and Textile Museum, London

West of England heat: 9th March @ Plymouth College of Art

Scotland heat: 14th March @ Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design

North of England heat: 21st March @ Perkin House, Bradford



Judging Heats Outside The UK

Judging heats in other participating countries are usually held between May and September each year.  Finalists may require a visa to travel to the Grand Final so regional heats should by held before 10th September 2018 to allow sufficient time for visas to be secured if necessary.

Regional competition co-odinators work with college and university contacts/tutors in their country to raise awareness of the competition and arrange the judging heat/s.  For information about the judging heat in a specific country, please contact the relevant country co-ordinator.

November 2018:

The prestigious Grand Final takes place where the global winner will be selected and announced.

Competition Rules


Judging heats will be held in participating countries from February 2018.  One finalist from each participating country will be chosen and all the finalists will be invited to the grand final where the global winner will be selected. On announcement of each country’s winner, accommodation and flights to the Grand Final will be arranged by SDC or reimbursement made to an agreed cost based on available flights at the time. Due to budget restrictions flights booked may not be direct. If a visa is required to travel to the grand final, this is the responsibility of the finalist and we strongly encourage finalists to apply for their visa in plenty of time.

Who can enter?

Undergraduate students in higher or further education following a recognised first degree or diploma course in fashion and/or textile design from the countries listed below.
Entries must be endorsed by the course leader and entry forms submitted by the college or university on behalf of the student/s to the regional contact. Individual entries will not be considered.

The participating countries are:

Australia, Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Kingdom

Age limit: Students must be 18 or over on 1 April 2018.

Basis of submission

The work can be based on a fashion or textile design project produced as part of the standard course curriculum or specifically for the competition.
Content can include finished roughs, design sheets, illustrations, working drawings, mood boards, photographs, fabric indicators, material swatches, etc. At least one board must outline the colour theme with the colour palette clearly indicated.
Each submission must be titled and supported by a typewritten statement in English (no more than one A4 page / ~500 words) explaining the background and inspiration for the work.
Boards (maximum of 4 ) should be A3 (297 x 420 mm) or A2 (420 x 594 mm) in size, with your artwork securely mounted.

ONE additional piece of work can be presented at the judging heat – this could be a length of fabric, a garment or finished article.

Only one entry may be submitted by each student.

Group entries will not be accepted.


Entries will be judged by respected professionals from the fashion and textile industry. Our judges are impartial and must not be contacted before the competition judging.  Failure to abide by the rules may result in disqualification.

To find out ‘what the judges are looking for’ take a look at our blog.


The work of the finalists will be on display during the heats and final. The winners will receive extensive publicity in the international press and in SDC’s own publications.

Intellectual property:

The intellectual property rights (patents, registered designs etc) in all designs submitted in the competition remain with the student. However, the SDC reserves the right to use the designs for exhibition/display purposes and to reproduce them in reports, on the website, in press releases and in any other publicity material.

Any queries?

For general queries, please email: For country-specific queries, please get in touch with the regional contact.

Other terms and conditions apply to the competition and those attending the final. Please contact SDC if you have a specific query.

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