Tandragee fashion student aims to make Tayto the star of the catwalk

Charles Leathem from Tandragee is competing for your vote on Tayto's Facebook page.
Charles Leathem from Tandragee is competing for your vote on Tayto's Facebook page.

Tandragee fashion student Charles Leathem is competing for your vote on Tayto’s Facebook page to become the overall winner in the Tayto Design Competition 2018.

Talented designers, Charles and fellow students, Andrew Moore and James Magennis, have been shortlisted as finalists in the Competition , in association with Belfast Metropolitan College - having created garments from Tayto crisp packaging.

The overall winner will have their winning piece unveiled on the catwalk of the upcoming Camerata Ireland Fashion Showcase, part of Clandeboye Festival, which takes place in August.

The innovative competition, part of Tayto’s ongoing commitment to encouraging young talent and supporting local education, was open to the BTEC L2 Art and Design – Fashion and Textiles students in Belfast Met and the top three winners will share a bursary from Tayto, worth £500.

Elly Hunter, marketing director of Tayto, said: “We are overwhelmed by the creative flair on display from the students who entered our competition.

“Each of our finalists has produced an eye-catching, colourful garment that beautifully represents Tayto and I would go as far as to say that they have made our crisps even more appealing!

“Tayto has always been the star on our Castle’s conveyor belts and I am really looking forward to seeing this year’s winning design on the catwalk at the Camerata Ireland Fashion Showcase, which is part of the Clandeboye Festival, on August 23.

“It has been will be a difficult decision for the judges as all of the pieces team the very best of local design with iconic Tayto packaging, creating clothing that is truly full of local flavour.

To see all of the finalists’ outfits, visit Tayto’s Facebook page and ‘like’ your favourite in our Tayto Design Competition 2018 album.

Each ‘like’ equals a vote so make sure that you have your say in which should be chosen as the winning item.”

Julie Ferguson from Belfast Metropolitan College, said: “This is a unique competition for our talented students, who enjoyed the challenge of working with Tayto packaging as their material.”

She added: “This was a project-based learning opportunity, which incorporated the project brief into the course assessment. It has tested their creative skills and imagination and the results are stunning. I know that the judges will find it very difficult to choose a winner themselves and will appreciate the social media likes from Tayto fans, which will certainly help them with the difficult final decision.”

Tayto crisps have been made at Tayto Castle, Co Armagh, since 1956 when Thomas Hutchinson spotted a gap in the market to make tasty potato snacks. The company remains family-owned by the Hutchinsons and is now run by Thomas’s children. Since its humble beginnings more than 60 years ago, Tayto has grown into an international business, supplying crisps and snacks produced in Tandragee to more than 40 countries across the world.

During the last 12 years, Tayto has also acquired iconic crisp and snack brands, Golden Wonder, Real Crisps, Mr Porky, Jonathan Crisp and Portlebay Popcorn through its parent organisation, Tayto Group. Across the Group, more than five million packets of crisps and snacks are produced each day at its six UK factories. For further information, visit www.tayto.com.