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Award winner Bethany eyes a bright future in design

Kangan Institute fashion student Bethany Peele has been named one of three winners of the Specsavers Young Innovator Design Competition.

Announced on 1 September as part of Melbourne Fashion Week, winners received a $3,000 prize and an opportunity for their eyewear designs to be manufactured and sold at Specsavers stores across Australia and New Zealand in 2020. 

"I feel very privileged to take out a top place in the Specsavers Young Innovator Design Competition. I'm very excited to be a part of it all and can't wait to see what the future holds," she said.

Bethany’s winning collection, ‘Malleable Metal’, featured four glasses with a modern twist on a classic look.

“Current and forecasted trends were an influence in my designs and I contrasted these modern trends with classic styles. My dream is for these glasses to allow women to feel empowered, valuable and ready for success,” she said.

"Winning this competition is an amazing kickstart for my design career and I feel very lucky to be surrounded by people who believe in me and my designs."

Kangan Institute’s CEO Phill Murphy said Bethany’s success in the competition will serve as a valuable career stepping stone. 

Bethany with Kangan Institute’s fashion management and teaching team - Katrina Jojkity Vicki Nicola Julie Curnow

“Being able to present her collection across Australia and New Zealand will undoubtedly open many doors and exciting opportunities for Bethany as she pursues her career in design,” he said.

The inaugural Specsavers competition, which also saw fellow Kangan Institute student Nadine Aurin selected as a finalist, was extended to students and recent graduates across Australia and New Zealand who were tasked to develop and submit designs for an eyewear collection.

Kangan Institute’s fashion diploma students were encouraged to participate in the challenge as part of CAD (computer aided design) technology training. Students digitally developed their designs in 3D and supported the design process with brand, trend and material research.

Laser-cutting machines on campus further enabled students to trial various materials and create prototypes.

“By incorporating competitions like these into the learning process, our students gain vital industry skills and maximise opportunities to present to potential employers,” said Mr. Murphy.

Bethany with prototype

“We’re immensely proud of Bethany’s achievements and look forward to seeing her work in stores next year.”

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