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Sherwin-Williams Reveals Student Design Winners

Thursday, May 10, 2018

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Global coatings giant The Sherwin-Williams Company (Cleveland) announced the winners of its eighth annual Student Design Challenge on Tuesday (May 8), awarding top prizes of $2,500 in both residential and commercial design categories.

This year, designers Vanessa Deleon and Nancy Fire as well as Sue Wadden, director of color marketing at Sherwin-Williams, judged the contest.

Images courtesy of The Sherwin-Williams Company

Nia Gibbs, of Ringling College of Art and Design, won first place in the residential category. According to Sherwin, Gibbs’ design of an urban affordable housing unit incorporated earth tones accented by bright pops of color. She received second place in last year’s competition, the company noted.

“It’s always exciting to see the creativity and innovation of the next generation of interior designers, and this year’s Student Design Challenge was no exception,” said Wadden. “The winners pushed design boundaries to think beyond aesthetics and consider how the space will be used and the role that color plays.”

The challenge was to create a color rendering of a residential or commercial interior space using a minimum of three Sherwin-Williams colors. Submissions also were to include project statements describing the design and its use of color.

Residential Winners

  • First Place—Nia Gibbs, of Ringling College of Art and Design. According to Sherwin, Gibbs’ design of an urban, affordable housing unit incorporated earth tones accented by bright pops of color. She received second place in last year’s competition, the company noted.
  • Second Place—Margaret Gouthro, of the University of Georgia.
  • Third Place—Amber McCullough, from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

“From the natural light and soothing colors in Gouthro’s tropical tree house to McCullough’s modern yet soothing design style, it was a pleasure judging this year’s competition and immersing myself in all of the unique, winning projects,” said Fire. “I especially loved the bright colors and openness of Gibbs’ affordable housing project, which challenged the conventional palette typically used for this market.”

Commercial Winners

  • First Place—Rose Phillips, from Ohio State University, for a versatile restaurant design featuring geometric patterns.
  • Second Place—Christine Galley, from Radford University.
  • Third Place—Allison Brown, of Utah State University.

Rose Phillips, from Ohio State University, won second place in the commercial category for a versatile restaurant design featuring geometric patterns.

“This year’s winners showcased cohesive design throughout the space along with eye-catching details, original color palettes and forward ways of looking at interior design,” said Deleon. “It’s always a challenge to select winners from an outstanding group of submissions; however, it was Phillips’ use of geometric design, Galley’s sophisticated yet daring twist on color and Brown’s softening of an industrial space that rose to the top.”

Facebook fan favorites were also chosen: Anna Bedwell, of Radford University, in the residential category, and Kaitlyn Brown, of Converse College, in the commercial category. Bedwell designed a relaxing Scandinavian sanctuary and Brown created a modern corporate headquarters. Each received $100.

In addition to the cash prize, Gibbs and Phillips will be featured in Sherwin publications and will receive $1,000 for their respective schools to put toward design programs. The second-place winners received $1,000 and the third-place winners received $500.


Tagged categories: Commercial / Architectural; Contests; Design; Education; Interior design; Sherwin-Williams

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