Two Texas Tech University student “jeaniuses” were named winners of the first Denim Runway competition for designing the best new women’s and men’s jeans. The competition was sponsored by Plains Cotton Cooperative Association (PCCA) and Cotton Council International (CCI), in collaboration with the university’s College of Human Sciences Department of Design’s Apparel Design and Manufacturing program.
Junior Stephanie Hartwig was named for her winning pair of men’s jeans, featuring a zigzag pattern; and senior Becca Pierce’s jeans, with the profile of a woman’s face in an art nouveau style on the rear pocket, won in the women’s jeans division.
“Becca and Stephanie will go on to our Denimatrix jeans facility in Guatemala later this year to see how a new jean design goes into production, and to have the opportunity to rub elbows with high-end designers in the denim apparel business,” said Wally Darneille, PCCA president/CEO and 2010 president of CCI.
Cotton USA, a CCI program, will sponsor the winning designers on a trip to the ColombiaModa trade show in Medellin, Colombia, July 27–29, to give Hartwig and Pierce a comprehensive view of the entire industry, from fiber to manufacturing to brand to retail. The Cotton USA display highlights U.S. cotton yarns and fabrics from Cotton USA Sourcing Program member mills. Attendance at ColombiaModa will give the two winning students an opportunity to learn about the U.S. cotton textile industry and garment manufacturing companies throughout the Western Hemisphere.
More than 20 students vied for the winning Denim Runway design. The competition was based on the popular Lifetime reality series, “Project Runway,” where designer hopefuls vie for a spot in the winner’s circle (and a healthy designer’s contract).
PCCA, a farmer-owned cotton marketing, warehousing, denim and jeans manufacturing cooperative headquartered in Lubbock, is America’s largest cotton supplier. The cooperative’s textile and apparel division is renowned for innovative, high-fashion denim fabrics and jeans. All students who participated in the Denim Runway competition used denim fabric from American Cotton Growers in Littlefield, Texas, just 34 miles from Lubbock.