by Sasha Fong

After rounds of ideation and experimentation, not to mention stinging critique, some 400 innovative, meaningful ideas across fashion, architecture, film, product design and communication design disciplines were showcased at the 28th run of the annual Design Show.

To train young minds to be responsible designers, TP’s BeyonDesign Centre (BDC) once again held the Sustainability Awards, which honoured the top three student projects that addressed more significant issues of the world through their designs such as reducing poverty, resolving hunger and responsible consumption.

Among the winners, each bagging a $1,000 cash prize, was product and industrial design student Tiew Jia Hui. Her project, Unearth, used scoby (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) – the layer that forms during the fermentation of kombucha, a health drink, to produce an interactive craft product series.

Jia Hui’s innovative use of dried scoby to create a DIY nightlight, bracelet and biodegradable sprouting pot.

“I was inspired to do something to help the environment,” shared Jia Hui. “It also came down to wanting to challenge the norm of how we can design products for the future, and so I focused on researching for materials that people tend to overlook or have never heard of.”

Jia Hui was overjoyed at winning the award and feels “a great sense of satisfaction knowing I have achieved my goal of creating awareness for this new material.”

‘The Pitch’

This year’s show also featured the inaugural run of ‘The Pitch’ – a new initiative that saw 11 commercially viable final-year projects spanning the range of fashion, product and communication design ideas, pitched to a panel of angel investors, commercial incubators and venture capitalists.

One of these projects was Athdal by Apparel Design & Merchandising students Ooi Huimin and Jerlyn Tan. Inspired by the millennial bride who is fashion forward and prefers being unique and comfortable, this collection of bridal and evening gowns used sweat resistant fabrics and sportier necklines, for the bride who loves her yoga pants!

That wraps another batch of young designers off to make their mark in the world. We can't wait to see what's in store next year!