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Beyond the Bale : September 2016
BUDDING FASHION AND TEXTILE DESIGNERS DISCOVER WOOL AWI continues to foster the education and development of both secondary and tertiary students, as well as for emerging design talents. Through global seminars, programs and competitions AWI is able to market the versatility of wool and showcase the fibre’s benefits to a worldwide audience. NATURALLY INSPIRING SEMINARS AWI continues to host seminars to inspire and educate textile and fashion students, in the early stage of their careers, about the properties and benefits of Merino wool. AWI began holding ‘Naturally Inspiring’ seminars for textile and fashion students two years ago. Held overseas and in Australia, the latest seminars included one in Sydney, two in Melbourne, with another to take place in Adelaide next month. The seminars not only affirm AWI’s role as the leading authority in the textile and fashion industry but also showcase a variety of career possibilities available for those wanting to work with wool. Each seminar brings together an expert panel of speakers from AWI and industry professionals working with wool, such as fashion designers, product buyers, creative directors and fabric suppliers – each bringing CHINA GRADUATE FASHION WEEK AWI partnered with the 2016 China Graduate Fashion Week in Beijing to help encourage the use of Merino wool by fashion students in China. Just shy of 1,000 fashion graduates took part in the 2016 China Graduate Fashion Week in Beijing, with 31 fashion shows staged during the week. A mix of both Chinese and international student designers, from 33 universities and design colleges took part, which was a record high for the initiative. AWI officially partnered with the graduate event, offering a series of support programs for new designers. One such program is Merino Wool Classroom, aimed to inspire, connect and educate the next generation of the fashion industry. Titled ‘Merino Wool - From Farm to Runway’ the inaugural forum drew hundreds of attendees, including student representatives from 33 institutions, directors from 14 design schools, independent designers and members of the media. AWI also funded the three winners of China Graduate Fashion Week – all up-and- coming designers – to travel to Hong Kong to experience the International Woolmark Prize Asia regional final, as well as visit AWI’s new Wool Resource Centre (see page 16). The week in July offered training in the versatility of Merino wool, as well as educational and professional meetings with industry experts to help the young creatives take their skills and visions to the next level. “Through the China Graduate Fashion Week platform, we hope to provide support and opportunities for local fashion students to grow and refine their skills,” explained AWI Country Manager China Jeff Ma. to the mix their own career journey and assisting AWI nurture the future talent of the wool industry. “The Naturally Inspiring seminar really lived up to its name,” said St George College fashion teacher Holly Siles. “My students were so invigorated and inspired by the industry speakers who spoke of their experience, not only at a professional level but very importantly at a personal level. This allowed students to really connect with the content and relate it to their current studies, whether that be senior high school level or more advanced diploma level. It also led to some lively discussions on the way back to college and back in the class room.” A winning design at China Graduate Fashion Week by Liu JunJie from Beijing Institute of Fashion Technology. Textile and fashion students view The Wool Lab at a Naturally Inspiring seminar. 14 OFF FARM
In the Shops - September 2016