Trip to South Africa for Textile Design student

Year Two BA (Hons) Textile Design student Sheena Ryder has won the trip of a lifetime as a result of a recent live project with Mohair South Africa, a non-profit organisation responsible for the marketing and promotion of mohair fibre.

Camera icon
Sheena Ryder with her award

Year Two BA (Hons) Textile Design student, Sheena Ryder, has won the trip of a lifetime as a result of a recent live project with Mohair South Africa, a non-profit organisation responsible for the marketing and promotion of mohair fibre.

The project aimed to raise awareness of mohair as the sustainable fashion fibre of choice. Mohair is the fleece of the Angora goat, and one of the world's most beautiful and exclusive sustainable natural fibres. South Africa is the biggest global producer of mohair, currently producing approximately 50% of total world production. In realising the responsibility that goes with being the most reliable source of this fibre, Mohair South Africa was established to advance the entire mohair industry.

Working in teams the students were given a starting concept of An Instinct for Survival, and asked to select from one of the three themes; living life on the edge, standing out from the crowd, or transmuting natural materials into ultimate matter. They had to explore the properties and qualities of the fibre and design innovative trend-leading fabrics for fashion applications.

The students also had to consider the season they were designing for, colour palettes, and conduct market research. Their final outcomes included eight to twelve individual final designs, alongside an individual contextual research file, a team presentation, and team lookbook.

When asked how it felt to win the competition, Sheena told us: "I was delighted and very surprised to have won the project as I have never used thick yarns in my weaves before. This made me step out of comfort zone of using only thin yarns but also have a better understanding of how the mohair fibre works. However, I was able to adapt it to my way of designing, incorporating the use of a thin yarn whilst keeping my samples focused mainly on the mohair fibre, which was my ultimate aim. I usually only use neutral tones in my work, so working with a colour palette of bright colours was also new to me."

Sheena will be travelling to South Africa in September 2016 to see how mohair is farmed and processed. She will also collaborate with one of our BA (Hons) Fashion Design students to make a garment incorporating the mohair design, and enter the Mohair-sponsored MUD Mohair Fashion competition at Donghua University, Shanghai in April.

Trip to South Africa for Textile Design student

Published on 13 June 2016
  • Category: School of Art & Design

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418