Invista’s Cordura brand fabric is joining forces with students at fashion design school ESMOD Paris to bring a new perspective to workwear by integrating the rules of fashion into protective work clothing.

Using inspiration from a range of Cordura fabrics, ESMOD students will develop a complete style portfolio consisting of several casual designs for men and women. Designers will begin with traditional work clothing concepts and integrate modern fashion styling concepts. Invista said the goal is to create versatile pieces showcasing style crossover between fashion, sport and work clothing.

Selected student designs will be produced using appropriate Cordura brand fabrics, known for their resistance to abrasion, tears and scuffs. This includes Cordura Naturelle fabric that is meant to have the look and feel of cotton, Cordura HP Hi-Vis fabric known for its high-visibility solutions, Cordura NYCO that combines cotton with nylon 66 for clothing that is comfortable and durable, Cordura Denim that offers abrasion-resistant performance with a traditional denim style and Cordura Combat Wool fabric that combines the warmth and comfort of wool with the durability of nylon.

In addition, students will learn techniques such as printing, dyeing and embroidery to integrate into their finished concepts.

Final designs will be presented on April 6 at ESMOD Paris. Representatives from the Cordura brand team will have the opportunity to select garments to feature in special Cordura brand young-designer displays at international trade exhibitions, including Outdoor Retailer in the U.S. in August and Expoprotection in France in November. Young designers will also be able to choose technical textiles from the range of Cordura fabrics to support future design activities.

“Innovation is an integral component of our brand ethos,” said Cindy McNaull, global Cordura brand and marketing director. “This collaboration is an opportunity for the Cordura brand team to share its know-how of performance fabrics and raise awareness about technical textiles among young designers. The Cordura brand strives to empower designers to create the desirable and wearable solutions of today and tomorrow.”

Christine Walter-Bonini, managing director of ESMOD, said the collaboration “creates a new link between innovation and tradition, the key theme for ESMOD since 1841.”

Cordura fabric is a primary ingredient in high-performance gear and apparel products ranging from luggage, upholstery and backpacks to footwear, military equipment, tactical wear, workwear and performance apparel.

Founded in 1841 in Paris, ESMOD is a network of 21 schools in 15 countries.

Headquartered in Wichita, Kan., Invista is one of the world’s largest integrated producers of chemical intermediates, polymers and fibers. In addition to Cordura, its brands include Lycra, Cooolmax, Stainmaster and Antron.