Students are designing for inclusivity in the product development concentration of the apparel and merchandising degree at Colorado State University. A December exhibit titled ‘Wide Open: Comprehensive Garments for All’ showcased senior capstone projects for faculty, students, families, and the public. The capstone course was taught by Associate Professor Kristen Morris, with help from graduate teaching assistants Morgan Davis and Donghoon Shin.
Congratulations to the course award winners! Each of these winners received a monetary prize for their work thanks to a Cotton in the Curriculum grant from Cotton Incorporated.
A panel of professional judges evaluated the capstone projects and selected award winners.
The judges reviewed the student posters and ranked them based on several criteria: design purpose and viability; commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in product design; innovation; Cotton Performance Technologies value addition; and originality and creativity of idea. The judges represented industry professionals and people from the community. These individuals were Tommy Hilfiger, B-Bold Empowered Adaptive Living, Smartwool, Zappos Adaptive, and Cotton Incorporated.
First Place: Pixel Mikulich
Third Place: Darius Vanvelkinburgh
Morris, Davis, and Shin also worked together to determine awards for excellence in prototyping. The students created their prototypes after the posters were submitted for judging.
Excellence in Prototyping:
Industry professionals with adaptive apparel knowledge determined the student award winners. Huge thank you to this year’s judges:
Derek Flores, Zappos Adaptive Merchandising
Heath Olson, Vice President, Company Stores-West at Tommy Hilfiger
Rustin Hughes, Founder of B-Bold Adaptive Sports
Kate Schmidt, Designer at Smartwool
Megan Peterson, Director of Marketing and Industry Programs at Cotton Incorporated
Partnership with Cotton Incorporated
In addition to thorough research on adaptive apparel with the target markets in need, students researched the recent technological advances in cotton. They also used cotton to create their prototyped garments. Students created technical packages and a bill of materials to accompany their prototypes to understand how their apparel lines would really go into production.
“They work directly with people with disabilities to make 3D virtual prototypes using CLO3D (an apparel software)” said Morris, “and create a physical prototype of one novel feature or design in their collection using cotton performance technologies.”
The grant from Cotton Incorporated was especially relevant to student learning in this project. “This project is a catalyst for students to think inclusively about design,” said Morris, “and cotton as a barrier-breaking fiber for adaptive apparel.”
Funding for this project was awarded in whole through a competitive grant presented to the Department of Design and Merchandising by Cotton Incorporated.