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FROM FOWL TO FASHION:
AN EMU LEATHER PROJECT
Overview of the Project
This project, funded by the Louisiana Emu Association and directed by Dr.
Bonnie D. Belleau, Professor of Apparel Design at Louisiana State
University, was designed to develop prototype apparel products from emu leather
to expand and enhance the market. A senior level class of apparel design
and merchandising majors at Louisiana State University executed the project.
This project encompassed the design, development, and execution of eight apparel
ensembles made of emu leather, and promotional strategies to entice and motivate
consumers to purchase
apparel products made of emu leather. Students were
divided into four teams and given the following scenario with which to plan the
Exotic Skins, Inc. is a large, Louisiana-based company that deals in exotic
skins such as American alligator, ostrich, and emu. With the renewed
fashion interest in exotic skin products and geographic proximity to a plentiful
supply of skins, the chief executive officer and management team have decided it
would be profitable to have a “spin-off” company that deals solely with emu
skin products. Product developers and merchandisers will create this
company by completing the following.
1. Company Name & Logo - each team will develop a company name and
logo to be presented to the class. Explain the concept that guided the
design and development.
2. Trend Analysis - each team will develop a presentation board analyzing
fashion trends and how those trends can be applied to leather apparel products.
3. Target Market Analysis - individual written paper defining and
describing the target market for the products that are to be developed.
Use the data set provided in class and describe the targeted consumer with
characteristics such as: knowledge of product characteristics, attitudes toward
the product, price/quality relationship, fashion awareness, media usage, ethnic
background, age, marital status, education, employment status, apparel budget,
and household income.
(Note: students were given a data set that emphasized exotic leather, not just
emu leather, because that was available at the time the class was taught.)
4. Garment Collection - 10 preliminary ensemble sketches per team.
Designs should be creative and offer challenge to the product developers.
Include a specification drawing in the bottom right corner of each page.
Final color sketches - 5 finished color sketches, in color, fabric rendered with
swatches attached and company name and logo, and spec drawing.
5. Costing - each team will complete a cost sheet to include itemized list
of all costs associated with development, production, and promotion of the
6. Promotional Strategies - each team will develop the following
Advertisement - this may be developed for any media: print, tv,
billboard, fashion magazine, trade publication, etc. Be creative and keep
the target consumer in mind.
Direct mailer piece - this should be developed to appeal to the target
market to entice them to purchase your products.
Promotion - may be any kind of promotion: a web page, fashion show,
trunk show, display for a trade show, etc. Turn in a written plan on this
Positioning - develop one event to assist in the positioning of your
products. This might be a plan for your products to appear on tv, in a
movie, on a celebrity, etc. Be specific about how the plan is to be
implemented, including contacts and specific facts and information.
APPAREL DESIGN TEAMS
students on design teams are apparel design majors. On the following pages
you will see garments modeled by LSU merchandising or apparel design majors.
Click on the team to view.
These students came up with the marketing ideas and logos above.
Rebecca Bubret &
Annie Owenby, Kristy Copeland &
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