The 2014 (first annual) Design for Change Competition has come to and end! That means we have chosen a winner for this year's jewelry design contest Down to the Wire: Help Make Poaching History. Design students from across the country were invited to participate by entering a full set of jewelry (necklace, earrings, bracelet) featuring snare wire. The Grand Prize is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to travel to Zambia to meet the artisans of Dsenyo partner group Mulberry Mongoose and learn first-hand about the poaching crisis and how local organizations are addressing those threats.
We didn't make it easy on the contestants that's for sure. These busy students with all of their own coursework and we required that they submit a FULL jewelry collection, work within very strict design parameters, make a compelling connection to conservation and the anti-poaching work that the jewelry will help fund, make a video and promote it on social media and more! We were extremely impressed with the quality of submissions received. Clearly the exceptional design students that entered the competition were motivated by the cause and gave a lot of time and energy towards their entries. We are very grateful that they honored the project with such beautiful designs and dedication.
Because of this, it was extremely difficult to choose just one winner. However, after an initial round of scored judging and then follow-up deliberation amongst the panel of judges we are thrilled to announce Hayley Stewart and her Snare Wire Twist jewelry design as the WINNER of Dsenyo's 2015 Design for Change competition. Hayley will be traveling to Zambia in 2015 with Dsenyo and will have an experience of a lifetime!
Hayley is from Morgantown, West Virginia and is currently working on a B.S. in Fashion Design at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. She is also the first-place winner and recipient of a Fashion Your Future scholarship at the school. The program is mostly focused on designing and fabricating clothing, but as Hayley said, "my heart is set on pursuing a career in jewelry design." She heard about the Dsenyo competition after taking a Jewelry Fabrication classes via a professor that had heard about it from their local Pittsburgh Ten Thousand Villages store. Hayley told us, "When I first heard about the competition I was so interested I wanted to immediately start working on my design ideas. As I read more into it and realized just how big of a difference Dsenyo helps make in not only people’s lives around the world, but in these innocent animals lives as well, I knew I had to get involved. I had a few design ideas but I kept coming back to my initial one of somehow “braiding” the wire, but once I started playing with the actual wire I ended up twisting it. The pieces came out representing exactly what I wanted them to, how Dsenyo brings people and places together from all over the world to compliment and strengthen each other."
CONGRATULATIONS Hayley! And, thank you Hayley for your beautiful and thoughtful design. We are thrilled to have you as our winner and look forward to traveling with you!
View Hayley's acceptance video here (she's wearing the jewelry):