UCLan student trainer design dreams come true

Posted on - 31st December, 2019 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Competitions, People, Preston News, UCLan, University campus
The three students receiving their samples from UCLan graduate Matt Houghton, 2Squared’s Lead footwear and Accessories Designer, and Adam Browne, Champion UK Footwear Brand Manager

A pair of trainers designed by a student at UCLan will hit the high street in 2020.


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James Grearson, a third-year student at UCLan was announced the winner of a competition to have his trainers released in the new year.

The joint winners were India Morris and Aroon Yousef but they won’t have their trainers released to the public.

The winners were chosen by 2Squared’s Matt Houghton, a UCLan graduate and Adam Browne, Champion’s UK Footwear Brand Manager.

Between January and May, the students at UCLan worked on design concepts that were aesthetically appealing, which integrated footwear technology and were able to be mass produced within an agreed budget.

As part of their second year studies, the trio and their classmates were asked to design new trainers to appeal to three audiences which were trends driven, low budget and for the Champion brand.

The UCLan undergraduate, James Grearson, said: “I went to Manchester to visit the expensive shops as I was looking to design a product to retail around £200. I saw what was on the market at that price, took lots of photos and then developed my ideas from there.

“I was really shocked to win but it’s brilliant to know that when I graduate in summer I can go out into the industry already having had my product on the shelves.”

His trainer will be available on ASOS and tReds in early spring/summer next year.

Lead Footwear and Accessories Designer at 2Squared, Matt Houghton, said: “This is quite a personal project for me, as I remember doing this project when I studied on my undergraduate, and it was a turning point in my degree as I knew I wanted to follow my passion for footwear in a master’s and as a career.

“It would have been amazing to have seen designs from then made, so I wanted to give back to the course and offer my knowledge and resources to help the students get a physical sample made and get the sample in front of the correct people who could put it in stores. It was a successful project and well received in the business.”

Read more: UCLan ranked top for student start-up businesses

Are you hoping to get your hands on James’ trainers in the new year?

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