UT Textile and Apparel Hosts High School Design Competition

TXA looks for multifunctional clothing ideas from students

This March, high school students from across the country have the opportunity to participate in the UT Textile and Apparel High School Design Challenge.

Backpack built into a jacket. Sketch by Andie Kent.

The unique competition asks participants to create and submit multifunctional garment designs. For example, a jacket that can double as a backpack, a pant pocket that zips off to function as a purse, or a hoodie that transforms into a super-stealthy cape!

Jessica Ciarla, an instructor at the UT Textile and Apparel (TXA) department, created the competition to give young designers a peek into the world of professional fashion design beyond the glitz and glamour portrayed on TV. “I wanted to create something for high school students where they could feel connected to the fashion community,” Ciarla says.

Fashion has made great strides towards prioritizing sustainability in the last few years and Ciarla says that aspiring designers should adjust by creating multifunctional clothing.

“This competition is looking forward to where the industry is going,” Ciarla says. “Multifunctional garments are really useful and will have more longevity in your closet.” Not only do multi-use wearables help promote environmental preservation, these designs ignite a cycle of creativity that extends beyond the hands of the designer. According to Ciarla, more consumers are shopping for designs that they can manipulate for themselves in order to express their personal style, this is where these kinds of garments come in handy.

Whether it’s a backpack with a built-in jetpack or a jacket that doubles as a hang-glider, designs must be original, unique and submitted by March 15. Submissions will be judged by TXA Faculty and Apparel Design alumni who currently work in the apparel industry. Winners receive up to $200 and reserved tickets to the UT Spring 2018 Fashion Show.

For more information, visit the High School Design Challenge page.

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TXA High School Design Challenge, High School, Design Contest, TXA, Fashion

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