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Finalists named in Project X competition

Melissa Hancocks, Sarah Price and Shannon Mason are all finalists in the Project X competition

Three Fashion Design students at the University of South Wales have been selected as finalists for Project X – an exciting new venture to create an ethical Welsh fashion brand.

Melissa Hancocks, Sarah Price and Shannon Mason are all finalists in the Project X competition

Melissa Hancocks, Sarah Price and Shannon Mason are all in the running for the top prize of £1,000 and a year’s contract to design the new brand – a challenge set by Welsh businessman Shelim Hussain MBE, owner of global company Euro Foods (UK).

Following the devastation caused by the Rana Plaza building collapse in Savar last year, Bangladeshi born Hussain was determined that something good must come from the reportedly preventable events.
His new venture will provide jobs and careers in Wales as well as a direct ethical pay back for the work force in Bangladesh, where the product will be manufactured responsibly.

The challenge for the students is to create a new welsh based designer brand for the high street aimed at the 35+ consumer. The brand must be ethically produced, but be at the forefront of contemporary inspirational fashion design as well as high standards of quality, cut, and fit.

The brand is yet to be named, but Irene Dee, programme leader for Fashion Design at City campus, Newport has named the project Project X because of its secret nature to date.

She said: “We’re delighted to be working on such a live brief which will support and develop the Welsh talent that emerges from the University. The students will gain invaluable industry experiences working through the stages and processes of the fashion design manufacture and production stages, through to marketing sales and promotion. Everyone involved in the project has a vested interest in developing the new fashion brand.”

The three finalists will present their designs to the judging panel – which includes Andrew Miller, Development Director at the Euro Foods (UK), and Wenda James Rowe, founder of Cardiff-based company The Style Team – later this month before the winner is announced.

The new designer brand collections will be launched at London Fashion Week 2014. Irene and the students will be visiting the fabric mills and manufacturing factories in Bangladesh next month to oversee sampling and production.

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