In its sixth year, the Denali Design-A-Throw competition saw record-breaking numbers. Denali Home Collection, a division of Monterey Mills, sponsors the competition and awards cash prizes to the top nine designs. This year’s theme, “Floral”, was open to college and university students enrolled in a graphic design, fashion, interior design, textile or related field of study. The 2016 competition was met with 763 entries from 334 students representing 22 universities across the country.

Since 2012, seven Wilson College of Textiles students have been finalists in the competition. This year marks the first time a student from the college has won the overall competition. Claire Gibson, a 2016 graduate of the College’s Master’s of Textiles program, took home the top prize with her design “Autumn Dahlias”.

“I was inspired to do this print by looking at wedding bouquets with a close friend of mine. She is planning on having an autumn or winter wedding and I fell in love with the richness of the color in all the flowers we were looking at for her. I chose dahlias because they have this great geometric look and the depth of color I wanted,” she said.

Also drawing inspiration from the Dahlia flower, Jamie Harvey, a senior studying Fashion and Textile Design with a focus on Textile Design, won third place in the competition with “Dahlias”.

“My design was inspired by the natural geometry of the dahlia flower, while taking into consideration the market and current style of the Denali brand,” said Harvey.

Jamie Harvey looks at her board for her second place design for Denali design a throw with Traci Lamar
Third place winner and Fashion and Textile Design student Jamie Harvey talksa about her inspiration with Dr. Traci Lamar, professor.

Students entering the competition are limited to a color palate of four, with an optional “birdseye” color, which gives the effect of more than four colors. Judging occurs blind by a team of five Denali employees, and judges consider the theme, originality, creativity, layout on different size throws, and the design’s appeal to Denali customers when determining the victors.

For more information on the competition, and to see the 2017 contest rules, visit

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