Thursday 23 June 2016

Project 20/20 Awards - winners with Jane Mills

Three Fashion students from the University of Northampton have taken home prizes at this year’s Project 20/20 Design Awards, a national competition focused on the professional clothing industry.

Student Bethany Martin took home first prize – the 20/20 Student Project Condura Award, with Mollie Crabtree and Lauren Jones in second and third place respectively. The three are all second years studying BA (Hons) Fashion, and they – alongside fellow Northampton students Gemma Stevens and Sharon Mensa – were shortlisted from a number of leading fashion and textiles universities and college across the UK.

The competition brief was to create their interpretation of professional work clothing for the year 2020 and both finalists and winners had the opportunity to showcase their designs on a live catwalk at the Professional Clothing Show in June.

Bethany Martin’s submission comprised men’s trousers and a unisex waterproof coat, both of which are designed for outdoor wear and are catered for people who work in conservation, environmental protection or similar outdoor work. She said: “I chose to do this as I was inspired by my brother who volunteers for the Canal and River Trust and the Warwickshire Wildlife Trust. As his work is based outdoors, I thought it would be interesting to design a range of clothing that takes into account elements, such as durability and weather protection and I have incorporated imagery and colours from the natural environment.

“This competition has revealed the potential in acquiring a career in this field which I had not considered before. I am thrilled!”

Mollie Crabtree’s design was corporate wear for Nationwide Building Society. She said: “I wanted to recreate a uniform that would be flexible and be able to be worn by all members of staff across the building society so it was easily recognisable. I used the colours from Nationwide’s logo as inspiration and plan to create a women’s jacket, a dress and a silk scarf. When designing, I conducted a questionnaire with some members of staff to find out what they would want from a uniform and took this on board with my designs.

Lauren Jones used her current job at Domino’s Pizza as inspiration for her design. She said: “I re-created the women’s uniform based on mine and what my other colleagues liked and disliked about the uniform. I decided to make it all black and opted for fitted cigarette trousers for a smarter look, a fitted stretch top with the logo, including a hat and a bum bag. Another factor that inspired me was the understanding of the functions needed when being on the go, serving customers and how useful the bum bag would actually be to store pens, receipts and any cash from quick payments. My knowledge about working in this environment helped inspire and trigger key ideas of what kind of uniform would work best for this, helping me to improve the uniform itself.

“I was shocked to even be shortlisted! A few days before the deadline, I was unsure whether to even submit it as I didn’t feel the design was good enough for the competition. Looking back I’m glad I did, as it was definitely worth sending off and taking that risk!”

Jane Mills, Senior Lecturer in Fashion at the University of Northampton commented: “I am over the moon and so proud of our students for their outstanding performance at the awards, and congratulations to all the finalists.”

Find out more about the BA (Hons) Fashion course.

Pictured left to right: Jane Mills, Bethany, Lauren, Mollie.

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