Tuesday, 22 February 2011

TFRC/VF Competition launches

The VF/TFRC Student Competition launch was a great success yesterday with over 120 students and tutors attending. The Application Form is now available to download from the right hand column of this blog.

We heard from a wonderful range of speakers who all explored the latest innovations in textile and fashion design and research and for their last presentation slide they were all asked to reveal how they would spend the £250 if they won a mentoring prize.

Emma Neuberg is founder of the SlowTextiles Group, a group of people who meet regularly to learn and exchange textile skills and knowledge . For her, 'slow' is about quality rather than time and Emma explained the many benefits of encouraging re-use and hand skills including an improvement in well-being and reduced stress. Emma said she would spend her £250 on generating good primary research to support the project proposal.

Alex Deschamps - Sonsino, an interaction designer, summarised the most interesting interaction projects around the theme of 'Responsible Living'. For students who are thinking of using new technologies in their proposals, Alex emphasised that they understand the technology properly and that the appropriate technology has been chosen for the right reasons. Alex would spend her £250 on a Arduino Lilypad, a microcontroller board designed for wearables and e-textiles.

Adam Thorpe from Vexed Generation and Design Against Crime used Mazlow's infamous 'Hierarchy of Needs' to structure his exploration of the theme 'protecting what I value', through some of the many varied projects he has worked on as a designer delivering garment and material innovations for urban environments. Adam would spend his £250 on a second hand bike from ebay as its the best way to get around town and is a primary research tool for garment design for urban mobility.

Di Mainstone is a fashion designer who designs 'artefacts' or garments for the body that are used in performance. Di explained her recent interest in exploring objects and garments that have a multifunctional or modular application and how her design processes were very often co-designed with collaborators from other disciplines.

Suzanne Lee was the final speaker and she presented her BioCouture project, and outlined the current emerging field of researchers who are designing using living organisms. Suzanne would spend her £250 on making sure the project and the 'back story' was well communicated whether it is through good images, a website or a short film or animation, and emphasised that this was often the most overlooked area for textile and fashion designers.

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