Registrations for the 2018 competition are now open and when teachers sign up, they receive a free resource kit to complement the lesson plans.
More than 13,000 Australian students were registered for the competition in 2017 alone and enjoyed the project as part of the formal school curriculum. Along with the opportunity to put your designing skills to the test, there are amazing opportunities and prize money for students and teachers to win.
The 2018 design brief is simple: the outfit must be a multi-functional design that highlights innovation and creativity. From dresses turning into handbags, jumpers which can be worn as a skirt, or trousers becoming shorts – the possibilities are endless but versatility is essential. The entry must contain a minimum of 80% Australian Merino wool and consist of one to four items.
This is purely a design competition, students don't need to make the outfit; the panel of judges just want your sketched designs and knowledge of various functional aspects of Merino wool.
Over the past six years, the competition has grown rapidly throughout Australia, and buoyed by this success The Woolmark Company launched the competition in Hong Kong in 2015. Schools in England have been next to take hold of its popularity and have embraced the initiative to use Australian Merino wool.
2017 Wool4School year 10 winner, Alice Wang, has seen her imagination become reality with leading Australian designer Jonathan Ward transforming her design into a woollen garment.
When Jonathan Ward unveiled Alice’s design she said “I was absolutely amazed and in awe upon seeing my design come to life being a physical tangible garment. It was so incredible to witness the transformation.”
Jonathan said “Alice Wang’s winning entry for Sia was outstanding in design and concept. Her garment effectively utilised the numerous properties of wool to showcase the fibre and fabrics in a dramatic, functional and spectacular garment.”
Along with having her garment created, Alice won a photoshoot and feature with Frankie Magazine. After the photoshoot Alice said it was “a truly unforgettable experience” that provided “great insight into the design industry”. The photoshoot will feature in Issue 81 of Frankie Magazine which is in stores now.
The chance to experience this opportunity through the Wool4School competition is a competitive process but the reward is, as Alice has said, “a truly unforgettable experience”. The competition has educated many thousands of students across the globe about the natural versatility of Australian Merino wool whilst at the same time it has supported young burgeoning designers to pursue their passion and embrace Australian Merino wool in fashion design.
Full details, resources and lesson plans can be found on the Wool4School website, along with details of the amazing prizes on offer for students and teachers.