National Make It With Wool Winners

Jamie Johansen

Screen Shot 2015-02-16 at 8.54.47 AMThe longevity of wool may be Frozen in Time, this year’s theme for the National Make It With Wool (MIWW) Fashion Show, but the colors and quality…how they have advanced! The state-winning MIWW contestants competed in the national finals and awards program in a Disney quality style show during the American Sheep Industry Association (ASI) Annual Convention on Jan. 31. The designers taking top honors at the 67th Annual National Competition were Kris Puckrin from Ohio and Jenna Legred of Minnesota.

Puckrin won the title of First Place Junior 2015 Wool Ambassador in her three-piece ensemble fashioned from an independent pattern company in Australia. The biker jacket is highlighted with zip pockets and sleeve openings with machine embroidery design on the yoke and sleep caps. Angled zip pockets and black topstitching add a unique visual to the skirt. In addition to other prizes, Puckrin’s winnings included a $1,000 scholarship from Pendleton Woolen Mills and a $500 cash award from the ASI Women. The junior division was open to youth ages 13 to 16.

Legred was selected as the First Place Senior 2015 Wool Ambassador. She modeled her ivory, baby alpaca and white mohair coat with accented sequined shoulder insets. In contrast, the black refined tube dress she designed and wore under the jacket combined for a striking ensemble. Among other prizes, Legred’s first-place winnings included a $1,500 scholarship from ASI Women. The senior division was open to contestants ages 17 to 24.

Grace Zongker of Kansas and Amelia Weight from Utah, won First Runner-Up Junior Division and Senior Division, respectively. Zongker started with a simple sheath dress pattern and then added chantilly lace to the neckline, sleeves and sides of the “little black dress.” A lace overlay on the sleeves, yoke and collar of her cream colored coat completed the elegant black and white look. Weight fashioned a triple lined and fitted coat made from wool and cashmere. Her wool dress was self-drafted, fitted and was a blend of bouclé in a mixture of grey tones.

Dianne Galloway of Sandusky, Ohio, was named 2015 National MIWW Adult Winner with her two-piece entry. The fur cuffs and detachable collar that enhanced her black wool bouclé coat are fashioned from mouton sheepskin. The sheath style dress was a self-drafted pattern and was made from black and burgundy wool jacquard. Nearly 1,800 black glass beads were used to embellish the neckline and the midriff. As part of her winnings, Galloway received an all-expense-paid trip to the national competition in Reno, Nev.

The winner of the Fashion/Apparel Design Award was Kristen Morris, a doctoral candidate in the area of fiber science and apparel design at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y. A men’s suite jacket block was patterned using ‘CAD’ software to construct the basic jacket form, intentionally boxy to increase the surface area for application of the felt tabs. Volume and density of the felt tabs, made from repurposed wool felt, were built up row-by-row by positioning rows of tabs one-half inch apart until the surface areas of the pattern pieces were completely covered. The garment panels, as well as the lining, were joined by hand. Winnings include a $1,000 scholarship from the American Wool Council and an all-expense-paid trip to the national competition.

A total of 55 junior and senior finalists representing 29 states and the New England region modeled their creations at the national competition. Contestants nationwide entered competitions at the state level and utilized more than 1,719 yards of wool fabric and more than 305 skeins of yarn to create their garments.