Student Rug Design Competition Winner's Gallery

Since 1988 Hagopian has worked to foster education by working with community partners to sponsor programs designed to promote higher education using both mentoring and scholarship incentives. Over twenty years ago Edgar Hagopian conceived of an idea to hold a "Rug Design Competition" for students in a related curriculum.  Collaborating with Detroit's College for Creative Studies (formerly the Center for Creative Studies), he sponsored a competition for interested students. Using local judges from the design community, first, second and third place designs were selected and the students were awarded with cash incentives.  The first place design was then made into a rug and displayed during the annual Student Exhibition.  Putting her signature on the program started by her father, Suzanne Hagopian has expanded the competition to include scholarship moneys as well as an annual donation to the school. 

In 2012, Hagopian World of Rugs initiated a rug design competition for students at Lawrence Tech College of Architecture. Scholarship awards furnished by Hagopian, would be presented to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. The criteria presented to students was to create a design that would reflect the revitalization and urban renewal efforts in our City (Detroit). Student participation surpassed all expectations and a panel of three judges met to select the winners.

That competition continues to this day and below you can see the winners from the last decade created by students who may one day be designing something that will find it's way into your home!

2017 Theme: Graffiti
For 28 years, Hagopian has fostered educational excellence in design with their annual Student Rug Design Competition, offering scholarships and donations to local colleges. Hagopian World of Rugs and The College for Creative Studies celebrated this year’s competition with judges from our local design community. The 2016-17 theme was centered around a new controversial art-form – graffiti. We asked the students to create a design that would reflect the concept of “street stories”. The entries were inspired!

First Place

Second Place

Third Place

Katherine Chmielewski, Junior
This rug is inspired by the concept that graffiti is not only a form of art and expression, but a form of communication. The design featured on this rug takes deconstructed letters of the alphabet and connects them to create a graphic pattern. The scrambled letters represent the potential for expression as well as the potential power that words hold when the letters are assembled - similar to the power that graffiti holds in communities as public art.
Josephine Leone, Sophomore
For my rug design I chose to abstract the form of clay brick. Many street artists choose to use bricks as a canvas for their expressive and colorful art. I believe brick is a warm material that instills feelings of security because if its strength. I relate to the material because the skill of masonry is one that has been passed down through generations in my family. I see how this fundamental skill has influenced me and my own creative decisions throughout my life.
Jacqueline Franciosi, Freshman
My design was inspired by the adrenaline rush experienced by graffiti artists as they quickly apply the medium before being caught. The pattern was created by drawing adrenaline molecules and allowing the pen to smear. The rug can fit into various spaces, such as a contemporary loft or school.

Honorable Mention

Honorable Mention

Abraham Buddish, Junior
Graffiti is ever changing.It starts with one mark and then grows until the creator is done. It often continues to change by people adding on to it or painting over it. Sometimes the city/owners paint over the graffiti blocking our view of it. But we still know that something exists beneath the gray paint. The censored or covered areas spark our imagination wondering what was there. The gray also creates a fresh canvas for the next beginning.
Jennifer Rudziensky, Freshman
When I think of Detroit street art, the first things that come to mind are the little things I see everyday that help make Detroit feel like home to me and the thousands of other people that live here. One of these such things are the several underpasses in the Midtown area that feature colorful geometric designs painted by local community groups (including CCS students!). For this reason I chose to create a design that also reflected this sense of playful geometry, that would remind people of these "voices of Detroit. In examination of the cultural impact that graffiti art has had on our city, I think it is also important to note the work of extremely influential artists such as Shepard Fairey, who have left their own mark on the Motor City and its wonders. The color palette I chose for the rug is intended to mimic that of Shephard Fairey's pieces, which often feature a neutral color palette with red for their defining elements.
2016 Theme: Immigration

For over 25 years, Hagopian has fostered educational excellence in design with their Student Rug Design Competition, offering scholarships and donations to local colleges.CCS staff along with 2016 Judges Jana Keyes of JJK Designs and Dayna Flory of Dayna Flory Interiors, joined hosts Suzanne Hagopian and Angela Hagopian Snow at the Birmingham showroom to determine the winners of the 27th Annual Student Rug Design Competition. Enthusiasm for this treasured project was evident in the lively deliberations as each student entry was carefully reviewed. It was obvious that the 2016 theme of “immigration” was embraced by the students as their inspiring rationales were read.

First Place

Second Place

Ashley Kreger 
A fingerprint. The most true form of someone’s identity. Each of us is made up of so much; our appearance, our race, our religion, and our citizenship. Those of us who stand together in the great City of Detroit may come from many unique places but we stand as brothers and sisters.
Esther Licata
I am the daughter of an amazing woman who is a German immigrant to Detroit, and this design was largely inspired by my mom’s story. I wanted to focus on the importance of family in a strong community, and on my Mom’s irreplaceable influence in my family. I used pattern motifs from German folk art, as well as personal symbols of my mother, such as the central flower. Throughout the design, there are images of more organic forms transitioning into more geometric patterns.This is my attempt to depict how the variety of people and families here in Detroit combine to create a beautiful structure. The environment where I see this rug being used would be in a lively dining room, under a family table. My intent was to create an image consisting of spoon-shapes adding a delicious variety of colorful things to the design.The rug would be an appetizing reminder of a family dinner table, and also a depiction of Detroit as a “mixing bowl” filled with the great variety of living cultures welcome here.

Third Place

Honorable Mention

Nadine DuPont
The inspiration for my design was an emotional response to the effects of immigrants being extracted from their sense of familiarity. I feel as though their energy permeates as they search to find their place in their new surroundings. The flowing circles represent a rippling effect, and the darker aqua cores represent the inner peace that we are all searching for within ourselves.
Rebecca Zimmerman
For this rug I was really inspired by the immigrant families I have met and became friends with. All of these families are extremely diverse in personality, values, cultures and dynamics but they all share a common goal, to make the lives of their families better. All of the people I have drawn are made from one line to show this connection. I think this particular rug would be cool in a more contemporary environment.
2015 Theme: A Detroit “Jewel” - Belle Isle

The island enjoys a long, rich local history dating back to the 1600’s when the Pottawotami Indians discovered the island. Today it is home to exquisite architecture and gardens, is the perfect setting for recreational activities like hiking, biking, picnicking and swimming, offers nature-based educational programs, and hosts major events like the Detroit Grand Prix.

College for Creative Studies students were asked to consider the history, the landscape, the revitalization and the connections shaped by the island to create a design that reflects the island and its contributions to our city, our state and our lives.

This year, the designs submitted were executed with such imagination, inspiration and precision that the judges had a difficult time selecting just three winners and chose to award three honorable mentions as well.

First Place

Second Place

Third Place

Casey Follen 
Casey used the iconic architecture, Belle Isle’s history and the impressions of light and color encountered in the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory
Katherine Chmielewski
Katerine found her inspiration in beautiful glasswork in the Belle Isle Conservatory
Amy Ferguson 
Amy drew her inspiration from the history of Belle Isle “The White Swan”

Honorable Mention

Honorable Mention

Honorable Mention

Nadine Dupont 
Nadine’s inspiration included the natural elements of water and sky and the revitalization of the Isle
Mallory Waring
Mallory’s design was inspired by the weddings held on Belle Isle using the beautiful myriad of colors on Belle Isle throughout the year
Rebecca Zimmerman 
Rebecca’s design was inspired by the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory
2014 Theme: A Tribute To Ken Snow
This year’s theme was chosen to honor the memory of family member and friend, Ken Snow. College for Creative Studies students were asked to create a design that would reflect his ideals of volunteerism and giving back as well as his abiding love of animals. A favorite quote of his by Ghandi “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated” reflects that. The results were inspiring!

First Place

Second Place

Third Place

Nicole Doering
“My design symbolizes that all animals need to be cared for.”
Maria Leone
“My design was inspired by the look of how the fur of an animal grows.”
Alejandra Roig
“I was touched my Mr. Snow’s love for animals and based my design off his name reflecting animal and human footprints.”

Honorable Mention

Honorable Mention

Andrea Del Rio
“Welcoming Red Shelters”
Julie George
“Animal Kingdom”
2013 Theme: Made In Michigan
College For Creative Studies Winners

Andrea Del Rio
Her inspiration was derived from local historic buildings and the use of Pewabic tiles on them.
1st Place

Bethany Radloff
Her inspiration was the colors and designs of Pewabic tiles.
2nd Place

Dan Marceau
His inspiration was the artistic vision of Mary Chase Stratton..
3rd Place

Andrea Del Rio 
Her inspiration was derived from local historic buildings and the use of Pewabic tiles on them.
Honorable Mention

Lawrence Tech Winners

Jessie Morley 
"Industrial Revolution"
This rug is inspired by traditional Pewabic tiles. Meant to represent a single tile which speaks to Detroit’ s past, present and future. Detroit has always flourished with the help of industry and is on the path to returning to its former glory.The rug can be either stand alone on a wall as an art piece or be placed on a floor.
1st Place

Daniel Haidar 
The Dandelion Tree has cotton like fibers that carries away seeds and spreads them everywhere as it flies with the wind. This is the way we can bring both nature and peace to Detroit.
2nd Place

Joseph Diamond 
"People Mover"
The uniqueness of Pewabic Pottery is not in the pottery, but it is the fact that the pottery is made in Detroit. This rug is inspired by something that is unique only to the city of Detroit, The People Mover. The design is based upon the routeof the people mover.
3rd Place

Sarah Maczko "Restoration"
The blue squares represent the revelation collection of the Pewabic Pottery. The blue is the riverfront mosaic, which signifies the Detroit River. The black line is an abstract form of the Detroit skyline. It is done with imperfection to represent the arts and crafts movement. The black line and blue squares are intertwined to show that the old and new buildings in Detroit are still today created by using Pewabic Pottery.
Honorable Mention

2012 Theme: Detroit Revitalization and Urban Renewal
College For Creative Studies Winners

Inspired by cracks in the concrete and community. gardens
Miyi Li 
1st Place

Inspired by Detroit skylines.
Julie George
2nd Place

Inspired by Detroit architecture and a flame rising out of the ashes” dawning on a revitalized City.
Kelleigh Swain
3rd Place

Lawrence Tech Winners

Inspired by the tires left around the city. The green track represents moving in a direction where cars will be greener.
Nichole Davis
1st Place

Inspired by cells under- going mitosis” and “two major grids that make up Detroit.
Josh Thornton
2nd Place

Inspired by the people of Detroit reaching out to one another to help strengthen their city.
Rachel Kowalczyk
3rd Place

Inspired by revitalization, creating more green spaces & public gathering places.
Tra Page
Honorable Mention

2011 Theme: The Essence of Michigan

"Natural Wonders"
Lauren Magda
1st Place 2011

"Michigan Waterways"
Emily Crowley
2nd Place 2011

"Petoskey Stones"
Jacqueline Sommerville
3rd Place 2011

"Raisin River"
Erin Greener
Honorable Mention 2011


2010 Theme: The Versatile and Beautiful Hemp Fiber


Anthony Kieren
1st Place 2010

Kristina Prybula
2nd Place 2010

Veronica Bayagich
3rd Place 2010


2009 Theme: Eco-Friendly Rugs - Natural Colors & Renewable Fibers

Virginia Peckenpaugh
1st Place 2009

Maria Filar
2nd Place 2009

Bridget Sullivan
3rd Place 2009

Stephanie Kolb
Honorable Mention 2009


2008 Theme: Folkart for Generation X

"Campus Martius"
Lauren Moyer
1st Place 2008

Virginia Peckenpaugh
2nd Place 2008

"The Trail of Earth"
Anh "Nicole" Phan
3rd Place 2008

Lauren Moyer
Honorable Mention 2008


2007 Theme: The Art of Interior Design

Diana Skylacos
1st Place 2007

Charlotte Lemke
2nd Place 2007

Diana Skylacos
3rd Place 2007

Megan Deal
Honorable Mention 2007


2006 Theme: Graphical Elements for Contemporary Decors

Kevin Beasley
1st Place 2006

Megan Deal
2nd Place 2006

Amy Rauner
3rd Place 2006

Megan Deal
Honorable Mention 2006


2005 Theme: Color As The Focus

Tracy Metivier
1st Place 2005

John Arndt
2nd Place 2005

Sarah Tereau
3rd Place 2005

Kacy Semma
Honorable Mention 2005


Early Winners

Daniel DeMaggio
1st Place 2004

Sheila Baker
3rd Place 2004

Golnaz Armin
1st Place 2003

Saima Qureshi
2nd Place 2003