In the second year of the Diploma in Fashion Design, students explore a number of social, political and environmental issues to create an art-to-wear Avant Garde design which challenges the boundaries of fashion and formulates the concept of art as a central part of fashion to assist students with their third year collections.

This year, COVID-19 had South Africa and most of the world in lockdown. The fashion design department challenged the second year students to utilise upcycling and recycling to use materials they have in their homes to create Avant Garde pieces that reflect their personal experiences of COVID-19.

The sustainable requirement of the design challenge saw students burning, tearing and weaving fabrics and wool, using cable ties and other found materials, and bending and manipulating plastic bottles. With each year, students are required to incorporate advanced 3-dimensional textile manipulations, and this year students were required to distort the proportions and silhouette, using the shape of the COVID-19 virus as inspiration.

Click through the gallery below to view some work from the 2020 Avant Garde designs.