The Soy in Textile Design Challenge

NEXTILE is a competition to expose fiber, textile and design students to the benefits of designing with soy-based products.

NEXTILE is for college-level students from participating schools to showcase their creative and problem-solving skills to increase the sustainability of textiles. 

For the 2023-24 inaugural challenge, students from the textile programs at six colleges and universities schools were invited to participate. Student teams from these institutions undertook an initial challenge to create an original fabric from soy-based materials and an original design for its use. Each team received a kit with a variety of soy-based materials that were incorporated into their fabrics.

The winning team from each school received a $500 scholarship and the runner-up received $250 scholarship.  School winners competed in a national competition, with the winning team winning a $1,000.00 scholarship and the runner-up receiving a $500 scholarship.

U.S. soybean farmers are widely recognized for their innovative solutions to the challenge of a changing climate.

Announcing Winners of the 2023-2024 Nextile: Soy in Textiles Design Challenge

The following is a list of the National Level Winners and School Level Winners and Runners-Up

National Level Winner

Kasandra Wright
University of Arkansas

Moth Skirt

Soy elements used:
Soy French Terry
Soy Top Roving
Soy Silk Thread
BioTex Modern Meadows Soy Leather Natural Pigment With Soymilk Soak

Design: Maxi Skirt

Material: Soy Moth Fabric

National Level Runner-Up

Anna Stuffelbeam
North Carolina State University

Quilted Foliage Coat

Soy elements used:
Soy French Terry
Soy Top Roving
Soy Silk Thread

Design: Quilted Foliage Coat

Material: Soy dyed textile

School Level Winners and Runners-Up

(Alphabetical by School)

Kansas City Art Institute

Winner: Olivia Mills

Bespoke Soy Wool Scarf

Runner-Up: Madeline Farinas de Leon

Baby Shoes

North Carolina State University

Winner: Anna Stuffelbeam

Quilted Foliage Coat

Runner-Up: Alexa Karrenbauer

Natural Pigment Dyed Soy Rug

Pratt Institute

Winner: Siyi Liu & Xinyi Liang (Team)

Covers for Sofa and Chair

Runner-Up: Lizz Snyder & Ava Wilson (Team)

Textile Bag

Savannah College of Art & Design

Winner: Scott Grove

Restaurant Wall Hanging

Runner-Up: Phaedra Duhon

Embroidered and Wax Design Textile

University of Arkansas

Winner: Kasandra Wright

Moth Skirt

Runner-Up: Annalise Robins


University of Wisconsin-Madison

Winner: Maia Rauh & Lucy Weber (Team)

Multi-Use Textile for Sustainable Products

Runner-Up: Emma Stavenhagen

Soy Quilted Bedding Products

Michigan soybean farmer and United Soybean Board Director Carla Schultz announces NEXTILE: The Soy in Textile Design Challenge.

NEXTILE Judge Panel

Melissa Levander

Owner, Levander Designs
Los Angeles, California

Kathryn Phillips

Chief Curator, Springs Creative Products Group
Rock Hill, South Carolina

Carla Schultz

Soybean Farmer, United Soybean Board Director
Frankenmuth, Michigan

Jeff Smith

SVP & GM Biomaterials, Modern Meadow
Nutley, New Jersey

U.S. Soy farmers and industry partners are consistently pushing the limits of innovation to discover and deliver solutions to the biggest challenges our world faces.