Bookmark and Share

« back to list

Traditional Home Launches New Design Incubation Program with Fabricut and the Rhode Island School of Design



Design-a-Fabric Competition Offers RISD Students

a Unique Opportunity to Develop Woven and Print Textiles for Fabricut


NEW YORK, NY  – Traditional Home magazineis thrilled to announce a first-of-its-kind Design Incubation program celebrating the talents of today’s young design students and tomorrow’s premier designers.  Partners for the first design challenge are Fabricut and the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). 

The Design Incubation program is a natural outgrowth of Traditional Home’s commitment to cultivating young art and design talent and challenging them to develop innovative, new approaches rooted in the tenets of traditional design.  “This year’s program is the first of a long-term initiative that will be expanded in 2014 as Traditional Home celebrates its 25th anniversary,” said Beth Brenner, Publisher, Traditional Home.  “The students’ fresh approach to design, coupled with their unbridled excitement and enthusiasm, will influence the textile world—and the world of interiors—in the years ahead.” 

During the RISD Spring 2013 Spring semester, students enrolled in five Textiles classes have been challenged with a unique assignment:  Imagine a home in which they would like to live and then design a collection of residential fabrics inspired by their chosen home.

The focus for this project has been placed upon generating fresh, new ideas in a field that is rooted in tradition. It is intended to invite personal context and open up the potential for individual expression as students generate ideas with real-world parameters in mind.  The winning designs will be judged in part on how well they address the question: How can your inspiration home be a place of tradition while representing new visions for interior textiles?

The judges, from Traditional Home, Fabricut and RISD, will recognize excellence in five Textiles classes: Design for Print, CAD, Jacquard for Pattern, Dobby and Knitted Fabrics.

“This Design Incubation program is an amazing opportunity for our students to be exposed to the challenges that established companies face when developing new textile designs for production,” said Brooks Hagan, Assistant Professor & Acting Department Head, Textile Department, Rhode Island School of Design.

Adds Daniel Hewett, RISD’s Director of Sponsored Studios, “Traditional Home and Fabricut are providing the students at RISD with an opportunity that will make an indelible mark on their careers. The students have enormous creativity to contribute to the field.”

On May 16, each student will present his/her finished board and concept to the judges, the panel will select one winning collection / design from each class, and winning students will be notified.

“This is a unique opportunity for Traditional Home to provide these young designers with a national platform to gain exposure for their immense talent and share their winning designs with our readers across the country,” said Ann Maine, Traditional Home editor-in-chief.

“Working with RISD and Traditional Home gives Fabricut the opportunity to educate design students about the process that goes into the design and production of a textile collection and enables the students to gain real-world experience while still in the classroom,” said Nina Butkin, Vice President of Design, Fabricut.  “Fabricut is also thrilled to provide a springboard to help these talented students jumpstart their careers right out of school. Nothing is more exciting than that.”

The winning collections and designs will be adapted by Fabricut for production and added to textile collections of three brands in the Fabricut family—Fabricut, Stroheim and Vervain—for release to the market in 2014.  This initiative, led by Nina Butkin, a 1989 alumna of the RISD Textile program, will see a portion of the proceeds from the sales of these designs donated to RISD to support future students and the Textile Department. Traditional Home, Fabricut and RISD will cover this project in detail through their respective digital and social media channels.  In addition, Traditional Home will run an editorial story on the project in late 2013.  

About Rhode Island School of Design

Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) has earned an international reputation as the leading college of art and design in the United States. Recently ranked #1 in Business Insider’s survey of The World’s 25 Best Design Schools, approximately 2,400 students from around the world study at RISD, pursuing full-time bachelor’s or master’s degree programs in a choice of 19 studio majors. RISD is known for its phenomenal faculty of artists and designers, the breadth of its specialized facilities and its hands-on, studio-based approach to learning – one in which critical thinking informs making works by hand. Required courses in the liberal arts provide an essential complement to studio work, enabling graduates to become critical and informed individuals eager to engage with the world. Through the accomplishments of its 26,000 alumni, the college champions the vital role artists and designers play in satisfying the global demand for innovation. Founded in 1877, RISD (pronounced “RIZ-dee”) and the RISD Museum of Art help make Providence, RI among the most culturally active and creative cities in the region. For more information, visit or

About Fabricut

Fabricut is one of the largest, most progressive distributors of decorative fabrics in the world; the brand designers depend on for everyday decorating. We are a quality driven company providing home furnishing fabrics and accessories of exceptional design and value to the interior design industry. Our devotion to supplying exquisite fabrics and trimmings is over 50 years strong and continues with a daily commitment to develop exclusive products for our customers. With an array of traditional, transitional and contemporary styles, patterns and palettes available, Fabricut is the designer’s preference for fabrics and trimmings. Our extensive line of in-stock fabrics, extraordinary customer service and a knowledgeable, worldwide sales force is unmatched. Fabricut’s dedication to the customer is at the center of its business. Experience Fabricut and experience the unlimited possibilities of interior design. For more information, visit

About Traditional Home Magazine

As the largest upscale shelter magazine in America, Traditional Home celebrates the union of timeless design with modern living, inspiring 5 million design lovers to reinterpret classic elegance in a thoroughly personal way. From home, garden, and green living to food, entertaining, and travel, the magazine is a tribute to quality, craftsmanship, authenticity, and family—a trusted resource that respects the past, lives in the present, and embraces products designed for the future. For more information, please visit For more information regarding the magazine’s new online companion, TRADhome, please visit



RISD has a long history of offering Saturday and after-school classes for children and teens, as this photo from c. 1910 confirms.