Cotton Council International (CCI) will launch the fifth season of its “Let’s Design” TV show, a pan-India fashion design competition that trains India’s future clothing designers and educates consumers on the benefits of cotton clothing, in March 2013.“Let’s Design” will air on zoOm TV in India, and U.S. viewers can watch the show with a zoOm cable subscription or on zoOm’s YouTube channel. Conceptualized by CCI, in association with the Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI), to make cotton the medium of choice for young designers, “Let’s Design” has become a popular TV show and India’s premier design competition.

“On ‘Let’s Design’ future design leaders illustrate the versatility of 100 percent cotton fabric in fashion by creating distinctive apparel that conveys their unique points-of-view,” said Agnieszka Fijol, CCI’s program head of India. “This design competition is part of our ‘Cotton Education’ program, which focuses on increasing consumer demand for 100 percent cotton products in India. With about 80 percent of the U.S. cotton crop exported, increasing global demand for cotton is critical to the U.S. cotton industry’s future.”

The fashion design competitiontakes India’s future fashion design leaders through a series of design challenges that test their creative and technical design skills and “real world” product marketing sensibilities. A panel of industry experts judges the designs, eliminating one or more designers each round. This season’s theme is the world’s five fashion capitals:  New York, London, Paris, Milan and Tokyo. Shortlisted contestants have been asked to interpret their favorite fashion capital in a single garment.

In addition, “Let’s Design” has been effective in creating pan-India consumer awareness about cotton. The last season of the show had an estimated visibility of over 400 million people in India. “Let’s Design” social media, including Facebook, Twitter and the “Let’s Design” microsite, also actively engaged consumers, creating 72.8 million consumer impressions.This consumer awareness of cotton is particularly important in India, one of the most populous and fastest growing economies in the world.

Recent Global Lifestyle Monitor research by CCI and Cotton Incorporated in India found that 70 percent of apparel items at retail contained cotton, which reflects consumer demand as more than eight out of 10 Indian consumers (84 percent) prefer their clothing to be made of cotton and cotton blends.

“We are proud to associate ‘Let’s Design 5’ with our outstanding Indian partners, building global cotton demand while supporting U.S. exports,” said Jimmy Webb, CCI president and a cotton grower from Georgia. CCI partners include FDCI as a fashion partner, Supima as a fabric partner, zoOm as broadcast partner, Verve as a magazine partner and www.fashionfad.in as an online partner.