A Lethbridge College student’s re-imagining of the uniforms worn by Canada Post employees has earned her second place in the national “Readdress the Postal Uniform” fashion design contest. Karah Nicholls, a student in the Fashion Design and Sustainable Production program, was the only student from a western Canadian institution to place in the top three in this creative annual competition.
“Winning this award was very unexpected,” says Nicholls. “I sometimes struggle with confidence when it comes to my ideas but this award has made me realize that I can feel confident in my talents and skills and be successful in conquering my goals. I couldn’t have achieved this without the support from my fellow students, my instructors and my family and friends. Receiving this award makes me feel like my dreams and goals are achievable.”
The contest, run by Logistek Unicorp in collaboration with its client Canada Post, gives a premium showcase to up-and-coming designers from design schools across Canada. The goal is to foster fashion design professionals and promote new trends in uniform garments.
Students were asked to reimagine Canada Post’s dress code, all the while respecting the various clothing constraints inherent to the work environment and to the specific duties of the targeted employees.
“I’m very proud of Karah’s achievement in this national competition,” says Vicki Hegedus, chair of the School of Media and Design at Lethbridge College. “Her success demonstrates not only her talent and capability in comparison to others at a national level, but also shows the quality of the Fashion Design and Sustainable Production program’s curriculum, which contributes to the professional success of our graduates.”
Nicholls designed six different uniforms that could be used by Canada Post employees. Her designs included both innerwear and outerwear for a variety of job descriptions, covering both summer and winter clothing.
“I tried to not only complete the requirements, but also to create looks that took the basic uniform to the next level,” says Nicholls. “I wanted for the uniforms to appeal to everyone who wears them by adding a fashionable edge, while also keeping in mind the functional aspects of the uniform.”
The grant money from this contest has changed Nicolls’ future plans. Having received her Fashion Design and Sustainable Production diploma from Lethbridge College, she will now travel to Australia for a fashion internship. Her career goals include working as a design assistant before ultimately becoming a designer.
Nicholls was also one of two Lethbridge College students, along with Katie Stutheit, who was chosen to have her designs showcased on the runway at last week’s Sask Fashion Week in Regina.
First place in the “Readdress the Postal Uniform” contest was awarded to Charlotte Carbone and Ashley Muir from Ryerson University in Toronto, while June Charles and Wan Hua Li from Campus Notre-Dame-de-Foy in Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures, Que., finished in third place.