25-year old designer Gavin Vaughan, from Hartlepool in the north east of England, entered the Remix 2 competition, developed by Hiive, a professional network for the creative industries. The former student, who graduated from the specialist art and design college with a degree in textiles and surface design in 2013, saw the competition two days before the deadline while he was working on an internship for a national trends forecasting company, and took it as a creative challenge not to be missed.
Using examples such as Banksy painting with oils, or Spider-Man comics as tapestry, entrants were asked to create a concept which brought together cutting edge techniques and classic methods with contemporary design.
As a textiles and accessories designer, Gavin took his love of the macabre, embroidery and gold beadwork and mixed these influences with tattoo needles, creating a concept for an Elizabethan-inspired sleeve design. It was this avant garde approach which won him the award and the chance to bring his concept design to life with a £1,000 prize.
He said: “I wanted to create something that was totally unexpected, mixing the traditional techniques of intricate hand stitching on an Elizabethan sleeve and incorporating the modern use of tattoo needles into the design.
“I was so excited to find out that my brief had won alongside two other entrants! I enter quite a lot of competitions and never really expect to win, so this is a great result for me and proof that you should never give up.”
After receiving the news, Gavin was given seven days in which to create his elaborate sleeve design and bring the concept to life. In total, the sleeve took 50 hours to produce, and included machine created gold work and hand stitched embroidery.
Gavin added: “Alongside my day time job, it was quite a challenging time, as I pretty much worked through the weekend straight to get it done. But I am so proud and my time spent at CCAD has certainly helped, as the college gives you tremendous freedom to explore your own creativity and unusual ideas, which I have taken into my own designs.”
Ciaran Burke, editor of Hiive, commented: “We kept the brief as open as possible for our Remix competition because we wanted to let entrants’ imaginations run wild – and they didn’t disappoint! The standard of entry was really high, and picking the winners was very difficult as there were so many truly original ideas to choose from. Our final three winners cover a range of industries that are all represented on Hiive – design, music and textiles.