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The Eastman Naia™ Design Challenge!

The Eastman Naia™ Challenge!

24 March 2017

To celebrate the launch of Eastman’s newest material, Eastman Naia™ cellulosic yarn, we’ve partnered with O’More College of Design to challenge their fashion students to design and construct evening gowns with Naia. Naia™ from Eastman recently debuted in Paris at Interfilière, the leading international intimates, swimwear and activewear sourcing and fabrics platform, and now we are bringing this innovative new fiber brand into the classroom!

Naia will be fantastic for future design innovators to practice with because it’s machine washable, has excellent moisture management, has stain release properties, has excellent wrinkle recovery and last but certainly not least, originates from nature! 

The challenge’s parameters use popular forecasting company, WGSN’s “Future Past” Key Trend and a “Warm Neutrals” and “Desert Hues” color story. Students can incorporate additional fabrics and accent colors, but must feature Naia in at least 75% of the final design.

Over the semester, while each student is creating an evening gown out of Naia, we will be following the students’ design process with a GoPro. Think project runway with innovative material and insanely creative students! So far, the students have already completed concept boards and some muslin (think sketching in fabric) mock-ups.

We talked to the students to learn about their passion for a design career, what they are inspired by, and what materials they like to work with. Let’s hear from three of the students who are up to the Eastman Naia Design Challenge! 

Colleen “Peach” Malone

Why did you decide to pursue a design degree?
As a kid, I had always dreamed of starting a clothing boutique and designing the clothes that went into it. When that dream never went away, I knew my love for the field would never go away, so I decided to pursue what I knew I would always love doing.

What is the inspiration behind your design for the Eastman Naia Design Challenge?
My inspiration for this project came from the bustle time period, but giving it a current twist.

What is your favorite material to work with and why?
My favorite material to work with is silk, for its hand and the challenge of sewing it. Silk also has a beautiful drape.

Kelly Nieser

Why did you decide to pursue a design degree?
I had always wanted to be a fashion designer, since before I could talk. Therefore, I knew fashion school was going to be a part of my journey to get there.

What is the inspiration behind your design for the Eastman Naia Design Challenge? 
The inspiration behind my design for the challenge comes from the mosaic techniques used in the Byzantine Empire.

What is your favorite material to work with and why?
Lately, I have been enjoying working with gabardine fabric because it is very durable, which makes the sewing process go smoothly.

Macy Harmon

Why did you decide to pursue a design degree?
I want to be able to express and challenge myself creatively, while doing what I love every day.

What is the inspiration behind your design for the Eastman Naia Design Challenge? 
My inspiration for this project comes from the historical fashions of the Elizabethan era.

What is your favorite material to work with and why?
I enjoy working with unconventional fashion materials—for example, I will be using metal for the caging around my evening gown.

We can’t wait to see what these students come up with! Don’t you agree? Follow their progress on our social channels. 

Follow our Instagram: (eil_innovation) and Twitter:(@Eastman_EIL) and ‘like’ our Eastman Innovation Lab Facebook page! #O’MoreNaia #materialsmatter #sustainnovation #education #create #design #innovate