Innovations 2016

May 27, 2016

Apply to be a featured Student Designer in Innovations 2016



Being an innovative designer is more than just a look walking down the runway. The best and brightest designers delve deeper into the process, asking more questions and telling the story behind each garment created. Questions on how it’s made, where is it from, what is its impact, and what story can it tell?

Last year’s theme “Eco-Street Style,” took designers on a journey through the definition of eco fashion, asking them to create a series of ready to wear looks fit for the “streets” of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Using only environmentally friendly materials and zero-waste practices, students incorporated inspiration from second-hand, thrifted materials to craft a look that anyone could pull from their closets and make it their style.

Innovations 2016 fashion challenge will focus on the theme “Redefinition,” challenging Twin Cities design students to redefine what sustainable can mean for fashion. By exploring other organizations unique sustainable projects outside of fashion, students will create two looks loosely inspired by an element of sustainability that these projects focus around. Be it water, energy, transportation, farming, or bee conservation take your design beyond the limits of fabric, all while including sustainable and ethical practices into your runway looks.


Sol Inspirations will offer a catalog of projects, listed below, for designers to choose from. All projects are innovative mid-west based organizations or initiatives focused on an issue or element within sustainability. Each student must pick one from the topics and use it as the inspiration behind their two looks for Innovations 2016. Each project from the list provided will fit a specific sustainability category, such as water conservation, to encourage a broader perspective on how each of us can be more sustainable while still being creative in our everyday lives.


0914_social_960x400THE BEEZ KNEEZ



ecodistrict-tour-ideaST PAUL ECO DISTRICT
uo_harvest_fnlURBAN ORGANICS
nrstonearchNICE RIDE
tumbleweed-tiny-house-companyTUMBLEWEED TINY HOMES


Selected finalists will be required to create two looks, loosely inspired by one of the sustainability projects available:

  • Avant-garde piece made of unconventional material (non-fabric).  
  • “Ready to wear” garment using eco-friendly textiles and notions.

Although both looks must be runway ready by November 13th, the second ready-to-wear look should be submitted on Instagram for audience voting the week of November 6th  or one week prior to Innovations 2016.


  • EXPLORE other innovative sustainable projects happening in the Twin Cities from the provided list for inspiration and vision for your designs.
  • SELECT one project from the list (Water, Transpiration, Energy, Farming, or Bee Conservation) as your element of design muse.
  • CRAFT a general artist statement and design direction for your two looks
    • Share the vision of your design, your inspirations, and any sketches/renderings
    • Share the outline of sustainable practices you hope to explore or use in your process (It is okay if this changes throughout the process as you explore how to incorporate eco-friendly and ethical practices into your designs)
  • SUBMIT your application online to in the form below by October 7th, 2016 for review.
  • BRING your innovative designs to life as ready to wear garments to walk down the runway on November 13th, 2016