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Nottingham Trent students show fashion designs at Spinexpo
Feb '14
Nottingham Trent University has become an integral thread in the fabric of one of the largest global fairs for fibres, yarns and knitwear thanks to strong industry links.
For five years, the university has increased its ties with SPINEXPO in Shanghai, China – an event attended by thousands of designers, buyers and decision makers from retailers, international brands and manufacturers.
It was the first university to exhibit at this prestigious fair and, this spring, students’ work will be a recurring feature throughout the event’s stands.
This is the first year postgraduate students have been invited to show in their own dedicated space. The stand will feature final collections by MA Fashion Design, Fashion Knitwear Design and Textile Design Innovation students who graduated in September 2013. Exhibits include complex combinations of hand and digitally crafted textiles, including laser-cut coats by Zhuo Gu, power knitted dresses by Lin Gao and printed garments by Katja Wukovits who has also been commissioned to the design graphics for the event. 
Work of second year and third year students from the university’s textile and knitwear courses, along with the latest innovations from Nottingham Trent’s Advanced Textile Research Group, will all be on show to the world.
For the first time, 43 second year students from the textile design and fashion knitwear courses have worked collaboratively on a project which will result in eight display stands at the fair from March 11 to 13. 
The students were supplied with the latest yarns through SPINEXPO and asked to create eight separate concepts, showcasing what the newest trends in those products could be used to create.
Combining their disciplines in knit, weave, print and embroidery, the students have been working in teams, using the yarns to create fabric samples and garments which will be shown in eight separate, trend-themed displays.
Tina Downes, principle lecturer in Textile Design at Nottingham Trent University, said: “It has been an extremely valuable project for the students in terms of the team work and collaboration and also in understanding and experiencing the pressures of the industry through working on a live project like this.”
Sponsorship is allowing two students who have worked on the project to attend the fair. Cherry Kerby-Steele, one of those travelling to Shanghai, said: “The project has been exciting to be a part of, particularly watching it develop and unfold. Working collaboratively has allowed us to bounce of each other’s ideas, perhaps thinking of another take on the development of your own work that you might not have previously thought of. I hopeto gain a wider knowledge of yarns and fabrics, which will help influence my future designs.”

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