22-year old Kshiteeja Gandre has won the India heat of SDC’s International Design Competition. The recent fashion design graduate from the School of Fashion Technology, Pune, looked to space travel for inspiration for her truly stellar submission called Intergalactic Exploration.
Kshiteeja said, “The patterns and colours used in this collection are very futuristic and digital. They are inspired by bright tones and wavy shapes depicting travel through black holes which are wormholes to other galaxies. “The colours are cinematic, thrilling, and energetic. Sustainability and fabrics with unique properties are the main focus in this collection. Milk fibre fabric, made from waste milk and called the ‘material of the future’, is used, alongside orange fibre textiles and corn fabric.
“I have used azo-free dyes that are eco-friendly, and eliminate the use of toxic compounds. The garments which I have designed can be detached and reversed as per the wearer’s choice. One piece that can be worn in different ways is also great for the environment!”
Kshiteeja aspires to pursue her own sustainable fashion ambitions, designing stylish clothing that does not burden the planet.
Judges for the heat were leading names in Indian fashion and interior design, Varja Bajaj; textiles and apparel consultant, Nicole van der Elst Desai; bio-materials company AltMat founder, Shikha Shah; and shirt design head for Blackberrys (Mohan Clothing Private Ltd) Navpreet Singh.
Yogesh Gaikwad, director of SDC International, said although the Indian heat was disrupted and delayed by the pandemic, 35 students from 11 colleges submitted entries. The first runner-up was Darshana BhajBhuje and the second runner-up was Praveen Mrudula.
The competition – run by volunteer co-ordinators in participating countries – is a key fixture in the SDC calendar and underlines our commitment to supporting global university education as well as running our own programme of training and qualifications.
This year’s theme is ‘Colour and the Universe’ and the competition sponsored by Archroma, engages with hundreds of students, universities and designers all over the world. Its aim is to help entrants develop their understanding of colour and the challenges around sustainability in the textile supply chain.
Kshiteeja will go through to the grand finale to stake her claim for the prestigious Veronica Bell Trophy. Her tutor, Mallika Dabhade-Samant, said, “For the last 21 years, MKSSS’s School of Fashion Technology, Pune, has been striving hard to promote green fashion and sustainable approach through education, research, and design.
“We are really proud that our students have been following this legacy in their creative work nationally and internationally! Kshiteeja is a promising and hard-working student with immense potential as a responsible designer for tomorrow.”