Hartman UK launched the competition with Birmingham City University to find the next generation of outdoor furniture textile designers last year. After receiving more than 80 entries, Hartman, crowned Sophie Hawkesford, a second year student on the University’s Textile Design BA (Hons) course, overall winner. Her design will be applied to seat cushions which will feature in Hartman UK’s 2015 collection.
She was presented with a £300 cheque at a ceremony at the Birmingham Institute of Art & Design last month. Runners-up, Amy Sellers and Josie Holuj were also presented with cheques of £100 each.
Hartman UK sales director Paul Facey said: "The quality of entries was exceptionally high, but Sophie stood out as she demonstrated a good understanding of the brief and strong commercial awareness. Her fabric design will look fantastic across a wide range of furniture and we’re sure it will be a huge success when it launches."
As part of the brief the students were also tasked to develop a range of design outcomes for The Garden Centre Group. Sophie Gehin, garden buyer (furniture and barbecues) for The Garden Centre Group and her team chose textile design BA (Hons) student Melissa Houston as the overall winner, with Arian Parkinson and Lily Evangeline Grace Smith 2nd and 3rd prize winners respectively. Houston's overall collection featured a series of contemporary ‘mix and match’ floral and stripe designs for The Garden Centre Group really well.