Graduate collection by Emily Edge
It will be ten whole years in September since I started university at Northumbria University in Newcastle. Gulp. However old I may feel, I’m still incredibly attached to Northumbria and I’d never, ever say anything negative about their talent – not that there is ever anything negative to say (and I’m not just saying that, know what I’m saying). Yet again they didn’t fail to dazzle with their wondrous collections. I chatted with Chris Hodge, senior lecturer at Northumbria, who told me I was in for a surprise and that more than half of the collections this year represented menswear. When I asked why, he said there’d been a shift in interest towards menswear; maybe that it was a more career-viable option, and that teaching had focussed on cut, texture and material.
I took my seat and as I reviewed the show notes an over-enthusiastic student came jogging by me, tripping over my camera case and going arse-over-tit right in front of the photographer’s pit. It was both hysterical and extremely worrying – it was an ambulance-chasing CLAIMS4U-style nightmare and I buried my head into the handouts hoping that the girl was okay. She was.
Anyway, as I plot my asylum elsewhere, here’s a rundown of Northumbria’s best talent:
Graduate collection by Emily Edge
Emily opened the show with her astonishing menswear collection and Chris’ comments immediately made sense. Rich yellow jackets were teamed with digital print tailored shirts, which also appeared on a blazer and trousers. With emphasis on the aesthetic properties of materials and sharp cuts, I wondered how anybody was going to match such a strong start. I’ve since learned that Emily’s been shortlisted for the Gala show (this evening) and I wouldn’t be surprised if she doesn’t scoop the award for menswear.
All photography by Matt Bramford
Oliver Moores followed with more exemplary tailoring. Exaggerated lengths, contrasting colours and luxurious materials made for a well produced collection.
Felcity placed her emphasis on the silhouette, showing body conscious, sexy numbers alongside more shapely pieces. A cropped top with a light under it seemed a little out of place but provided interest, nonetheless.
Charlotte’s collection drew inspiration from the angst-ridden youth sub-cultures of the past and, diversely, scrap yards. Creeping metal patterns were found at the base of shirts, and a rust-coloured coat stood out amongst her strong tailoring.
Graduate collection by Rebecca Byers
Rebecca’s architectural collection of chunky knits and golden conceptual pieces was a delight. I have endured so many ‘fashion’ shows where the quality of the craftsmanship and the uniqueness of the designs don’t even come close to this.
Zoe presented a sophisticated menswear collection, taking inspiration from aviation and, interestingly, folds created by origami. Cue aviator leathers, rich knitted sweaters and a light grey shirt with triangular darts running down the front that I’d rather like to get my hands on.
Graduate collection by Kellie Fountain
Kellie also used aspects of aviation as inspiration, but with a whimsical, playful approach applied to womenswear. Bright, vintage-esque colours worked wonders on playful skirts and structured coats. Perspex aeroplanes added even more fun to this stand-out collection.
I adored Chloe’s take on 1990s hip-hop culture and her use of big and bold prints. Patchworks formed from pre-worn garments and vibrant knits had me clinging to my seat to avoid jumping onto the catwalk and stealing the lot.
Graduate collection by Amelia Smith
Amelia sought inspiration from the architecture in Moscow’s Red Square. Shapely frocks were decorated with intricate monochrome patterns and gold embellishments that mirrored each piece’s silhouette.
- Northumbria University: Graduate Fashion Week 2012 Catwalk Review Part 2
- Edinburgh College of Art: Graduate Fashion Week 2012 Catwalk Review
- Kingston University: Graduate Fashion Week 2014 Catwalk Review
- Ravensbourne: Graduate Fashion Week 2013 Catwalk Review
- Graduate Fashion Week Day 1: Edinburgh College of Art & Northumbria