Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2012 Catwalk Review: Blow Presents Shinsuke Mitsuoka

Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Gareth A Hopkins
Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Gareth A Hopkins.

Shinsuke Mitsuoka‘s dark vision was named Liberum Arbitrium, viagra approved meaning Free Will. A graduate of Nottingham Trent University, Shinsuke Mitsuoka used large quantities of zips donated by YKK to create a very black collection. A gothic feel was achieved by asymmetrical draping and sheer fabrics which laddered across chests to leave bosoms semi-exposed, or encased forearms to leave shoulders bare, but my favourite parts were the sculpted pieces that bookmarked the show.

Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Aliyahgator
Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Aliyahgator.

First out came a high collared coat dress that covered the face to above the nose, leaving the eyes above to glare down at the catwalk in a modern approximation of a fearsome amazonian warrior. A skirted pelmet splayed out to the sides to create a striking silhouette with armoured legs were exposed at the front and back.

Shinsuke-Mitsuoka-Blow-Presents by Lucy-Wills
Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Lucy Wills.

Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Aliyahgator
Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Aliyahgator.

Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka Blow Presents SS 2012 review-photo by Amelia Gregory
Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012. All photography by Amelia Gregory.

Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Gareth A Hopkins
Shinsuke Mitsuoka S/S 2012 by Gareth A Hopkins.

At the end of the collection a bold shouldered dress featured zipped panels sweeping up the front and sides, but the denouement was a fantastic showpiece: zips pronouncing a widened handkerchief skirt which was topped by a gauzy sheer knit top veiling the face up to the eyes.

Categories ,Aliyah Owen, ,Aliyahgator, ,Armoured, ,Blow Presents, ,Boobs, ,Gareth A Hopkins, ,gothic, ,knit, ,lfw, ,Liberum Arbitrium, ,London Fashion Week, ,LSO St Luke’s, ,Lucy Wills, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,S/S 2012, ,Sculptural, ,Sheer, ,Shinsuke Mitsuoka, ,YKK, ,Zips

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Week 2012 Gala Awards Ceremony: Part One


Matthew Williamson by Ruth Joyce

Twelve hundred students descend on Earls Court Two for Graduate Fashion Week every year. About a quarter of them get the opportunity to showcase their collections during one of the 16 fashion shows that are held over four days. In a dramatic climax – the Gala Awards show – 10 students are selected to present their work for a second time in the hope of receiving the coveted Gold Award.


All photography by Matt Bramford

So, like the fashion industry itself, chances of making it are pretty slim. 10 incredible collections graced the catwalk in the finale and I honestly couldn’t pick a winner – celebrity judges like Matthew Williamson and Julien Macdonald commented on the incredible standard exhibited of not only those who had been selected as a Gold Award nominee, but every college.


Julien Macdonald by Claire Kearns

Here’s a photographic whistle-stop tour of the awards ceremony:

INTERNATIONAL AWARD


Yvonne Kwok – Amsterdam Fashion Institute


Zhu Liyuanzi – Istituto Marangoni Milan


WINNER: Karen Jessen – ESMOD Berlin, presented by Julien Macdonald, Sara Maino from Vogue Italia & Caroline Burstein from Browns.

STUART PETERS KNITWEAR AWARD


Emma Walsh – Nottingham Trent University


Jousianne ProppManchester Metropolitan University


Caitlin Charles Jones – Kingston University


Judges Ruth Chapman from Matches, Erica Peters from Stuart Peters and knitwear designer Mark Fast couldn’t decide, so Caitlin and Jousianne both scooped the award!

ZANDRA RHODES TEXTILES AWARD


Daisy Lowe by Ruth Joyce


Amelia Smith – Northumbria University


Dae-Byn Lee – Nottingham Trent University


Roz Lamkin – Manchester Metropolitan University


WINNER: Xiaoping HuangUCLAN, presented by Daisy Lowe and Mary Katrantzou

BARCLAYS NEW BUSINESS AWARD


Holly Reid – UCLAN, presented by Tabitha Somerset-Webb (Project D) and Michelle Mone OBE

FASHION INNOVATION AWARD


Ami Collins – UCLAN, presented by Lorraine Candy of ELLE magazine and designer David Koma

MEDIA & DESIGN AWARD


Kerrie Donelly – UCA Epsom, presented by Fashion Editor-at-Large Melanie Rickey and ID magazine‘s Jefferson Hack (swoon)

STAND DESIGN AWARD


Edinburgh College of Art, presented by designer Fred Butler and Harvey NicholsYuri Nakamura

GEORGE BEST OF BRITISH AWARD


Susanna Yi – University of East London, presented by TV presenter Caroline Flack and ASDA fashion director Fiona Lambert

GEORGE CHILDRENSWEAR AWARD


Harriet Simons – Colchester, presented by singer Louise Redknapp and Fiona Lambert

MULBERRY ACCESSORIES AWARD


Laura Smallwood – Kingston University, presented by Mulberry‘s Tori Campbell

ETHICAL AWARD


Sarah Murphy, Northumbria – presented by stylist Jocelyn Whipple and film producer/eco hero Livia Firth

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD


Legendary catwalk photographer Chris Moore, presented by designer Jeff Banks

Part Two, featuring the major players and the menswear, womenswear and Gold Award winners, coming soon…!

Categories ,accessories, ,Amelia Smith, ,Ami Collins, ,Amsterdam Fashion Institute, ,ASDA, ,Awards, ,Caitlin Charles Jones, ,Caroline Flack, ,Caryn Franklin, ,Catwalking.com, ,Ceremony, ,Childrenswear, ,Chris Moore, ,Claire Kearns, ,Colchester, ,Dae-Byn Lee, ,daisy lowe, ,David Koma, ,Earls Court Two, ,Eco Age, ,Elle, ,Emma Walsh, ,Erica Peters, ,ESMOD Berlin, ,Essex, ,fashion, ,Fiona Lambert, ,Fred Butler, ,Gala, ,George, ,Gold Award, ,Graduate Fashion Week, ,Harvey Nichols, ,Holly Reid, ,ID Magazine, ,international, ,Istituto Marangoni Milan, ,Jeff Banks, ,Jefferson Hack, ,Jousianne Propp, ,Julien McDonald, ,Karen Jesson, ,Kerrie Donnelly, ,Kingston University London, ,knitwear, ,Laura Smallwood, ,Lifetime Achievement, ,Livia Firth, ,Lorraine Candy, ,Louise Redknapp, ,Manchester Metropolitan University, ,Mark Fast, ,Mary Katrantzou, ,matches, ,Matt Bramford, ,Matthew Williamson, ,Melanie Rickey, ,menswear, ,Michelle Mone OBE, ,Mulberry, ,New Business, ,Northumbria University, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,Project D, ,Roz Lamkin, ,Ruth Chapman, ,Ruth Joyce, ,show, ,Stuart Peters, ,Susanna Yi, ,Tabitha Somerset-Webb, ,Tori Campbell, ,UCA Epsom, ,UCLan, ,UEL, ,Womenswear, ,Xiaoping Huang, ,Yuri Nakamura, ,Yvonne Kwok, ,Zhu Liyuanzi

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Week Interview: Nottingham Trent’s Phoebe Thirlwall

hold

Knitwear design student Phoebe Thirlwall was an unquestionable highlight of Graduate Fashion Week 2010. Her work demonstrated an impressive level of craftsmanship, story receiving recognition even before the shows when one of her dresses was photographed by Rankin. Phoebe’s final collection, consisting of six looks, was a feast of beautiful and intricate knitwear. I caught up with Phoebe to learn a little more about the work that went into her final collection, and after the chaos of that week, what she plans to do next!

Graduate Fashion Week is a fantastic opportunity for students. How did it feel to have your work selected for the show?
It was really exciting because I had never expected to be selected, and when I found out I was obviously over the moon. It made such a difference to see my work on a raised catwalk, it felt so professional, and although I was really nervous when it went out, it was a great feeling to see it up there and being photographed. It is an amazing opportunity for students and it is a shame that everyone doesn’t get to go.

Why did you choose to study Knitwear Design over a general Fashion degree?
The Knitwear course at Nottingham Trent University involves a sandwich year in industry, which was one of the reasons I chose to study the course. Employers always want experience, so I felt that a year in the industry would be attractive to potential employers. I never particularly preferred knitwear over wovens, but when you are designing knitwear you have so much more freedom to create exactly what you want. If you are making an outfit from woven fabrics, although you can print on them etc, you are still limited by the fabric itself. When you knit an outfit, you can control the whole thing. You can knit the fabric however you want it and create different textures and patterns. Also, I like knitwear because you can knit the pieces of fabric to size. You can approach the whole outfit in a different way.

Where did you complete your work experience and how valuable was it to you?
My year in industry was spent in a family run knitwear factory called GH Hurt and Sons in Chilwel, Nottingham. It is a fairly small factory where lace knit is designed, made and constructed into various pieces. They create baby shawls and christening blankets sold in high end department stores and items of clothing for a number of luxury catalogue retailers. We also produced a lot of items for retailers overseas, such as the USA and Hong Kong. I was able to learn about the first steps of the process – receiving yarns on cones and in big hanks, to designing and knitting the pieces and finally how each item is made and finished to a high standard. It was also nice to see the items for sale and being worn because I always thought -’I made that!’ – which is a great feeling.

Can you explain a little about the techniques that you used? Did you have a lot to learn in terms of advanced skills?
The outfits I made are knitted mostly in silk and bamboo, with an elastic yarn that I used to create the patterns. I developed the technique by experimenting on a knitting machine to see what types of fabric I could create. I knew that I wanted to use elastic because it developed from my concept of skin, and also that I wanted to work with luxury fibres such as silk. I used a combination of rippled stitches, stripes and transferred needles on the front of the bed of the knitting machine to create the fabrics that I made my collection from. These are all techniques that I had learned in previous years, but putting them together required a lot of experimentation, and luck.

Was there much change in your work from the conception of the idea to the work we saw on the catwalk?
Yes. I had worked on the project since Christmas, so there was a lot of time for ideas and concepts to change. Initially, I had no idea what my collection was going to look like and I still didn’t until a few weeks before the show. I had no idea what type of fabric I would use, or what techniques. It wasn’t until I developed a fabric that I was happy with that the collection began to come together. At the beginning, I was thinking about the concept of shedding skin, more than the skin itself. This gradually changed throughout my research and development, into a more specialised study of the skin. I know that if I had stuck with my original thoughts, then the collection would look a lot different. It would probably be a bit more structured, rather than the more subtle and slim-line way it is turned out.

Which of the other graduate collections were you impressed by?
There were so many great collections. It’s good to see other peoples work because it is all brilliant. I loved all of the collections from Nottingham (slightly biased obviously), but there were many other Universities that I liked aswell. I was backstage when the De Montford show was going on, and some of those were amazing!

Nottingham has made a bit of a name for itself as a hub of creativity. What it has it been like for you?
I like Nottingham because it is a small city. It’s more like a town and everything’s quite compact. There are a lot of creative people who come to study here, but everywhere is quite laid back, which I like. It’s not over crowded with arty types. There are lots of students with different interests, and there are good places to go to eat, drink or shop. I suppose it has got a bit of a name for itself, but it’s a fairly down to earth city to live in. I’ve lived just outside the city centre for 2 years, and I’m going to be sad to leave.

You described your collection as ‘based on skin and flesh on the human body’. Where did this inspiration come from, and what else inspires you?
The inspiration for my collection came originally from a general interest in the skin and flesh. I think that this comes from being a vegetarian since I was 11. I have a strange relationship with food. I like things that are untouched. I won’t eat meat. I took this fascination with meat and flesh and developed it into a concept which I could look into for my collection. I get inspired by anything and everything really, usually something small and ordinary because you can look at it in more detail. I think that even something small and boring to others can become inspiring if you look at it enough.

New designers such as Mark Fast have shown us some other unique techniques with knitwear. Have you thought about how you could further your own skills?
It’s strange to think that a technique can be what ‘makes’ a designer. To me, Mark Fast developed this brilliant technique and ran with it. That’s great because I had never thought about design from that angle before. I always thought you had to constantly create different pieces all the time. Designers like Mark Fast are inspirational because they open your eyes to the possibilities of what can be done on a knitting machine. Missoni also creates such beautiful and unique knitwear. In a way, I would like develop my technique further, but I also would like to focus on new tasks and new direction.


Phoebe Thirwall, photographed by Rankin

One of your dresses was photographed by Rankin. How did it feel to learn that your dress was selected?
Amazing. It was sent down to London, but I never expected it to be photographed. Apparently the university sends items down every year and they rarely get selected to be photographed. When I found out that it had been chosen to be photographed I was really happy, by Rankin especially! The fact that Kate Shillingford from Dazed and Confused actually chose the pieces is overwhelming. It was about 2 months later that the pictures were released. Seeing my work on the Vogue website was mental!

You also received praise from the fashion bloggers. How have you found the attention?
It’s been completely surreal having people like Susie Bubble write about my work. She said it was one of her favourites from the photos, and so did Lucy Wood. I used to read about fashion graduates and imagined they had such exciting lives, but I’m just in my room with my cat and not really doing anything. It’s really strange seeing photos and articles about my work. I feel now like it isn’t even mine and I’m looking at someone else’s. It doesn’t seem real.

It has been two weeks since the show. What’s the plan now?
Is that all? It feels like a lot longer ago than 2 weeks. My collection is being sent over to Shanghai in September for Spin Expo, and a few of the outfits are being used in a photo shoot in July. My plans now involve finding a job, going to interviews and hopefully being hired. I want to move down to London to be nearer to my boyfriend. Ideally, I want to see clothes that I have designed, being made. I also really want a long holiday, somewhere nice and hot, where I don’t have to think about knitting!

Categories ,catwalk, ,Dazed & Confused, ,De Montford, ,fabric, ,Fashion Bloggers, ,Fashion degree, ,Flesh, ,GH Hurt and Sons, ,Graduate Fashion Week 2010, ,Hong Kong, ,Kate Shillingford, ,knitwear, ,Lucy Wood, ,Mark Fast, ,Missoni, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,Pheobe Thirlwall, ,Rankin, ,Shanghai, ,Skin, ,Spin Expo, ,Susie Bubble, ,Technique, ,usa, ,Work experience

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Week Interview: Nottingham Trent’s Phoebe Thirlwall

hold

Knitwear design student Phoebe Thirlwall was an unquestionable highlight of Graduate Fashion Week 2010. Her work demonstrated an impressive level of craftsmanship, story receiving recognition even before the shows when one of her dresses was photographed by Rankin. Phoebe’s final collection, consisting of six looks, was a feast of beautiful and intricate knitwear. I caught up with Phoebe to learn a little more about the work that went into her final collection, and after the chaos of that week, what she plans to do next!

Graduate Fashion Week is a fantastic opportunity for students. How did it feel to have your work selected for the show?
It was really exciting because I had never expected to be selected, and when I found out I was obviously over the moon. It made such a difference to see my work on a raised catwalk, it felt so professional, and although I was really nervous when it went out, it was a great feeling to see it up there and being photographed. It is an amazing opportunity for students and it is a shame that everyone doesn’t get to go.

Why did you choose to study Knitwear Design over a general Fashion degree?
The Knitwear course at Nottingham Trent University involves a sandwich year in industry, which was one of the reasons I chose to study the course. Employers always want experience, so I felt that a year in the industry would be attractive to potential employers. I never particularly preferred knitwear over wovens, but when you are designing knitwear you have so much more freedom to create exactly what you want. If you are making an outfit from woven fabrics, although you can print on them etc, you are still limited by the fabric itself. When you knit an outfit, you can control the whole thing. You can knit the fabric however you want it and create different textures and patterns. Also, I like knitwear because you can knit the pieces of fabric to size. You can approach the whole outfit in a different way.

Where did you complete your work experience and how valuable was it to you?
My year in industry was spent in a family run knitwear factory called GH Hurt and Sons in Chilwel, Nottingham. It is a fairly small factory where lace knit is designed, made and constructed into various pieces. They create baby shawls and christening blankets sold in high end department stores and items of clothing for a number of luxury catalogue retailers. We also produced a lot of items for retailers overseas, such as the USA and Hong Kong. I was able to learn about the first steps of the process – receiving yarns on cones and in big hanks, to designing and knitting the pieces and finally how each item is made and finished to a high standard. It was also nice to see the items for sale and being worn because I always thought -’I made that!’ – which is a great feeling.

Can you explain a little about the techniques that you used? Did you have a lot to learn in terms of advanced skills?
The outfits I made are knitted mostly in silk and bamboo, with an elastic yarn that I used to create the patterns. I developed the technique by experimenting on a knitting machine to see what types of fabric I could create. I knew that I wanted to use elastic because it developed from my concept of skin, and also that I wanted to work with luxury fibres such as silk. I used a combination of rippled stitches, stripes and transferred needles on the front of the bed of the knitting machine to create the fabrics that I made my collection from. These are all techniques that I had learned in previous years, but putting them together required a lot of experimentation, and luck.

Was there much change in your work from the conception of the idea to the work we saw on the catwalk?
Yes. I had worked on the project since Christmas, so there was a lot of time for ideas and concepts to change. Initially, I had no idea what my collection was going to look like and I still didn’t until a few weeks before the show. I had no idea what type of fabric I would use, or what techniques. It wasn’t until I developed a fabric that I was happy with that the collection began to come together. At the beginning, I was thinking about the concept of shedding skin, more than the skin itself. This gradually changed throughout my research and development, into a more specialised study of the skin. I know that if I had stuck with my original thoughts, then the collection would look a lot different. It would probably be a bit more structured, rather than the more subtle and slim-line way it is turned out.

Which of the other graduate collections were you impressed by?
There were so many great collections. It’s good to see other peoples work because it is all brilliant. I loved all of the collections from Nottingham (slightly biased obviously), but there were many other Universities that I liked aswell. I was backstage when the De Montford show was going on, and some of those were amazing!

Nottingham has made a bit of a name for itself as a hub of creativity. What it has it been like for you?
I like Nottingham because it is a small city. It’s more like a town and everything’s quite compact. There are a lot of creative people who come to study here, but everywhere is quite laid back, which I like. It’s not over crowded with arty types. There are lots of students with different interests, and there are good places to go to eat, drink or shop. I suppose it has got a bit of a name for itself, but it’s a fairly down to earth city to live in. I’ve lived just outside the city centre for 2 years, and I’m going to be sad to leave.

You described your collection as ‘based on skin and flesh on the human body’. Where did this inspiration come from, and what else inspires you?
The inspiration for my collection came originally from a general interest in the skin and flesh. I think that this comes from being a vegetarian since I was 11. I have a strange relationship with food. I like things that are untouched. I won’t eat meat. I took this fascination with meat and flesh and developed it into a concept which I could look into for my collection. I get inspired by anything and everything really, usually something small and ordinary because you can look at it in more detail. I think that even something small and boring to others can become inspiring if you look at it enough.

New designers such as Mark Fast have shown us some other unique techniques with knitwear. Have you thought about how you could further your own skills?
It’s strange to think that a technique can be what ‘makes’ a designer. To me, Mark Fast developed this brilliant technique and ran with it. That’s great because I had never thought about design from that angle before. I always thought you had to constantly create different pieces all the time. Designers like Mark Fast are inspirational because they open your eyes to the possibilities of what can be done on a knitting machine. Missoni also creates such beautiful and unique knitwear. In a way, I would like develop my technique further, but I also would like to focus on new tasks and new direction.


Phoebe Thirwall, photographed by Rankin

One of your dresses was photographed by Rankin. How did it feel to learn that your dress was selected?
Amazing. It was sent down to London, but I never expected it to be photographed. Apparently the university sends items down every year and they rarely get selected to be photographed. When I found out that it had been chosen to be photographed I was really happy, by Rankin especially! The fact that Kate Shillingford from Dazed and Confused actually chose the pieces is overwhelming. It was about 2 months later that the pictures were released. Seeing my work on the Vogue website was mental!

You also received praise from the fashion bloggers. How have you found the attention?
It’s been completely surreal having people like Susie Bubble write about my work. She said it was one of her favourites from the photos, and so did Lucy Wood. I used to read about fashion graduates and imagined they had such exciting lives, but I’m just in my room with my cat and not really doing anything. It’s really strange seeing photos and articles about my work. I feel now like it isn’t even mine and I’m looking at someone else’s. It doesn’t seem real.

It has been two weeks since the show. What’s the plan now?
Is that all? It feels like a lot longer ago than 2 weeks. My collection is being sent over to Shanghai in September for Spin Expo, and a few of the outfits are being used in a photo shoot in July. My plans now involve finding a job, going to interviews and hopefully being hired. I want to move down to London to be nearer to my boyfriend. Ideally, I want to see clothes that I have designed, being made. I also really want a long holiday, somewhere nice and hot, where I don’t have to think about knitting!

Categories ,catwalk, ,Dazed & Confused, ,De Montford, ,fabric, ,Fashion Bloggers, ,Fashion degree, ,Flesh, ,GH Hurt and Sons, ,Graduate Fashion Week 2010, ,Hong Kong, ,Kate Shillingford, ,knitwear, ,Lucy Wood, ,Mark Fast, ,Missoni, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,Pheobe Thirlwall, ,Rankin, ,Shanghai, ,Skin, ,Spin Expo, ,Susie Bubble, ,Technique, ,usa, ,Work experience

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Amelia’s Magazine | Get volunteering with Fashion Awareness Direct

2009 Fashion Futures 1 - Project with teenagers in Newham_012009 Fashion Futures 1 – Project with teenagers in Newham

“FAD” is shorthand for ‘Fashion Awareness Direct,’ a registered charity since 2005; although it was successfully managed as a company from 1997. Its ethos focuses on making ‘the person central to design, promoting respect to the wearer and integrating art and culture into fashion’. I think this is a fabulous way of amalgamating fashion and oneself – allowing inner confidence as you wear the outfit, with the pieces representing you as an individual. To produce these designs FAD run a variety of professional fashion workshops, for ages 13 – 25, as well as inspirational industry days and even high profile catwalk events.  These are split into five main schemes: the Fairtrade Fashion Club, Fashion Futures 1, Fashion Futures 2, FAD Competition and FAD volunteering.

2009 FAD Competition - Winner Ana Belen Merono, Nottingham Trent2009 FAD Competition – Winner Ana Belen Merono of Nottingham Trent University

2009 FAD Competition - Winning outfit2009 FAD Competition – Winning outfit

 Every year FAD put on a competition, with the winner getting to show at Vauxhall Fashion Scout as part of London Fashion Week – an amazing achievement! 2009’s winner was Ana Belen Merono, a fashion student from Nottingham Trent University. The brief for the year was ‘Urban Holographic,’ with a suggestion of working on ideas around ‘Retrofuturism’ and ‘space tourism’. Candidates were invited to create ‘fashionable uniforms for galactic hosts/hostesses,’ a very original project I think. Ana’s designs were two outfits, as with all the finalists. One of which featured a structured jacket incorporating an ‘Op-Art’ design, and the other combining a ‘cosmic cloud’ dress with ‘armour’ style layers. Her creations earned her a unanimous vote, with the prize including £2,000 and a work placement with well-respected designer Paul Costelloe – who was also a judge on the panel. 

Fashion Futures 2_2009 FAD Junior Award Winner - Katerina Drury, 18, from New CrossFashion Futures 2_2009 FAD Junior Award Winner – Katerina Drury, 18, from New Cross

Runners up focused on shapes and patterns based on the solar system, as well as ‘space suit’ ideas. The FAD Frontline is the panel of judges that votes on the designs, and it always consists of leading industry personalities – last year it included the editor of Vogue.com, the Director of Vauxhall Fashion Scout, and designer William Tempest.  Throughout FAD students have gained experience in the industry, and have also had their work displayed in exhibitions and even on live catwalks – invaluable experience for those looking for a future in fashion!  Look out for the catwalk final of the 2010 competition on Monday 22nd February at Vauxhall Fashion Scout.

Fashion Futures 2 2009 - Finalist Joel Boyd, 18 from CatfordFashion Futures 2 2009 – Finalist Joel Boyd, 18 from Catford

FAD has its own volunteering scheme – whether you’re a business or individual, you can help out! If you’re an ‘industry volunteer’ perhaps you could donate some materials, or run a workshop. As a ‘young volunteer’ you can learn more about the fashion world whilst mentoring other FAD students in skills you’re well practiced in.  FAD’s records demonstrate that they have worked with as many as 4,000 young people from secondary schools through to university students. These projects are considered a strong link into the industry, even gaining the Chairman’s Award at the London Educational Partnership Awards, so it’s a great chance to get involved with something worthwhile. FAD looks for volunteers in all areas, such as Industry Experiences, Placements, Teaching, Sponsorship and the Media.

Fashion Futures 2 2009 - Finalist Kesoon Chance, 17, from HackneyFashion Futures 2 2009 – Finalist Kesoon Chance, 17, from Hackney

Finally a quote from Dolly Jones, editor of Vogue.com, on the benefits of working with FAD:
“I think in these awful times of economic drama, there’s a tendency to think there’s no room for new talent.” She hopes that projects like these will help “weed out the mediocre” and find those “truly talented newcomers”. You can volunteer and sign up to FAD through their website: www.fad.org.uk.

Categories ,Ana Belen Merono, ,Camilla Sampson, ,Dolly Jones, ,FAD, ,FAD Competition, ,FAD volunteering, ,Fairtrade Fashion Club, ,Fashion Awareness Direct, ,Fashion Futures 1, ,Fashion Futures 2, ,London Educational Partnership Awards, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,Paul Costelloe, ,Vauxhall Fashion Scout, ,Vogue.com, ,William Tempest

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Show Gala Show 2014 Review

Holly Jayne Smith by Sine Skau

Holly Jayne Smith by Sine Skau.

I have been attending Graduate Fashion Week for six years now and every year I wonder how such young designers manage to be so creative. Once again the final 25 collections showcased in last week’s Gala Show were truly outstanding and revealed a wide range of talent to watch. The night began on a poignant note with a moment’s thought for the late Louise Wilson, the formidable Central Saint Martins tutor who was integral in the training of luminaries such as Christopher Kane, Jonathan Saunders and Mary Katrantzou. Here’s hoping that one of these finalists and winners goes on to as much success.

GFW Aimee Dunn by Gareth A Hopkins

Aimee Dunn by Gareth A Hopkins.

GFW Menswear Award: Aimee Dunn – Nottingham Trent University
I know it’s menswear but who doesn’t love stealing their boyfriends clothes? Dunn’s collection of monochrome looks were superbly put together and with Thatcher on the front of a jumper you’re never going to avoid attention. Dunn also picked up the Menswear award at the end of the evening – well deserved.

Grace Weller GFW 2014 Bath Spa Uiversity by Jenny Robins

Grace Weller by Jenny Robins.

Grace Weller by  Julie J Seo

Grace Weller by Julie J.Seo.

George Gold Award winner and GFW Womenswear Award: Grace Weller – Bath Spa University
The embroidery and workmanship that had gone into Grace’s beautiful collection of Erdem-esque floral and sheer dresses was astounding. Not only did Grace pick up the Womenswear Award but she walked away with the £10,000 Gold Award to kick start her label.

Rebecca Rimmer by Vicky Scott
Rebecca Rimmer by Vicky Scott.

Rebecca Rimmer – UCLAN
Brightly coloured clothes painted onto bigger clothes. Sounds ridiculous, works really well on the catwalk, as Rebecca Rimmer proved. Her cartoonish collection was fun and original as well as having a high impact on the audience as it closed the show.

Holly Jayne Smith by Hye Jin Chung_2

Holly Jayne Smith by Hye Jin Chung.

Holly Jayne Smith by Sine Skau

Holly Jayne Smith by Sine Skau.

Holly Jayne Smith – Birmingham City
Foot-high hats and a pop art colour palette ensured this collection caught our attention and made us rethink light blue as a staple. The models also carried co-ordinated bright sports back packs which I loved.

GFW Shan Liao Huang by Gareth A Hopkins

GFW International Winner: Shan Liao Huang by Gareth A Hopkins.

Lauren Lake – Kingston University
Coloured fur made its mark last season and Lauren Lake’s first model strode out in a huge over sized, pink fur-lined shearling coat, so it was always going to be a winner. The silver metallic skirts and block boots, pink PVC and top knots ticked all the boxes, just amazing.

Colleen Leitch – Edinburgh College of Art
80’s glamour is back in Colleen Leitch’s collection of exquisite looks brought together by scattered sequins and dark colours in draping fabrics clinched at the waist for maximum femininity.

HANNAH DONKIN BY JANE YOUNG

Hannah Donkin by Jane Young.

GFW Creative Catwalk Award: Camilla Grimes – Manchester School of Art
Pink fur again, hopefully not real, (trend alert!) but this time alongside a more delicate and feminine ensemble that had hints of Jonathan Saunders about it (never a bad thing). Sheer embroidered shirts and a hooded bomber jacket were just two of the items I want in my wardrobe.

Fashion graduates of 2015, I can’t wait to see what you’ll have in store!

Categories ,2014, ,Aimee Dunn, ,Bath Spa University, ,Birmingham City University, ,Camilla Grimes, ,Central Saint Martins, ,Christopher Kane, ,Colleen Leitch, ,Edinburgh College of Art, ,Gala Show, ,Gareth A Hopkins, ,Grace Weller, ,Graduate Fashion Week, ,Hannah Donkin, ,Holly Jayne Smith, ,Hye Jin Chung, ,Jane Young, ,Jenny Robins, ,Jonathan Saunders, ,Julie J Seo, ,Kingston University, ,Lauren Lake, ,Louise Wilson, ,Manchester School of Art, ,Mary Katrantzou, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,Rebecca Rimmer, ,review, ,Shan Liao Huang, ,Sine Skau, ,Truman Brewery, ,UCLan, ,Vicky Scott

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Week 2010: Nottingham Trent


Danielle Reed, viagra buy illustrated by Gabriel Ayala

The Central Lancashire show was an upbeat, patriotic affair. Models strutted down the catwalk to a stonking soundtrack provided by students from the performing arts department, and we waved collections along with the cute Union Jack flags left on each seat.  

The clothes were a lot of fun too – with the standout students playing around with conventional British icons – from Beefeaters and Big Ben to British school uniforms.  

Kirsty Stringfellow created interesting textures with her whimsical collection of knitted designs. Column dresses in thick, appliquéd floral cream ruched across the models’ chests like a curtain, and were adorned with sparkly crochet, printed lace and gold netting. Whilst some of the curtain-esque dresses seemed a little heavy, Stringfellow is clearly gifted at manipulating different textures – the fine-knit cream designs with intricate layers of ruffles were sheer romance.  


Kirsty Stringfellow, illustrated by Zarina Liew

On the other end of the scale, Danielle Reed and Rachel Wolstenhome both had fun with a tough, urban take on sportswear. Reed paired white bobby socks with black Dr. Martens, black grommet-laced waistcoats with slouchy joggers and manipulated aertex fabric into loose jumpsuits. The effect was a strong collection of grunge-inspired sportswear, with PVC fabrics and a monochrome palette adding a gothic edge.  


Danielle Reed, illustrated by Gabriel Ayala

Wolstenhome created the sole male collection on show, and her futuristic sportswear borrowed shapes and fabrics from a manner of sportswear, a mash up of scuba-esque one-pieces, foam hoods, and deconstructed jersey sweat pants, with cut-out holes and harem-style drapes and folds.  

Rachel Wolstenholme, illustrated by Aniela Murphy

A special mention should also go to Sunny Kular for her attempt to spice up school uniforms with Indian elements. We loved seeing that boring grey fabric we remember from our school days twisted into sari shapes, ties and blazers in Ikat prints and jackets emblazoned with a ‘Ganesh’ school badge.  


Sunny Kalar, illustrated by Donna McKenzie

But UCLAN’s strongest suits are clearly printed textiles, forming the basis of two of the most eye-catching collections.  

Jessica Thompson’s surreal collection of printed designs was full of quirky, cartoonish imagery, manipulated onto a spectrum of designs, from fitted shift dresses to sporty anoraks. Everything demanded attention, from the Beefeater printed slip that made the model into a marching drummer, to the dreamy shifts emblazoned with chimps and birds.

Some images were distorted into unrecognisable shapes and quirky patterns, forcing a closer look.  The final piece was a red, floor length printed mac, that looked like it was printed with moon craters – the coolest cover up for a rainy day.  


Jessica Thompson, illustrated by Gemma Milly

Saving the best till last – Sara Wadsworth’s amazing printed collection chimed with the patriotic mood. The whole collection was crafted in chiffon, printed with British icons – the Union Jack, Big Ben the London Eye and what looked like parts of Trafalgar Square, all blown up, re-sized, and patterned across wisps of fabric.


Sara Wadsworth, illustrated by Abi Daker

Wadsworth let the prints do the talking, choosing almost sheer chiffon in muted shades of grey, white and occasional splashes of olives and teal. Bright yellow bras peeked out from beneath the designs, ranging from floor length kaftans to a Vivienne Westwood-esque draped dress, and a sweet smock top and short combo. Who would have thought our most touristy landmarks could be re-imagined into such wearable designs?

Images courtesy of catwalking.com

Danielle Reed, pills illustrated by Gabriel Ayala

The Central Lancashire show was an upbeat, cialis 40mg patriotic affair. Models strutted down the catwalk to a stonking soundtrack provided by students from the performing arts department, and we waved collections along with the cute Union Jack flags left on each seat.  

The clothes were a lot of fun too – with the standout students playing around with conventional British icons – from Beefeaters and Big Ben to British school uniforms.  

Kirsty Stringfellow created interesting textures with her whimsical collection of knitted designs. Column dresses in thick, appliquéd floral cream ruched across the models’ chests like a curtain, and were adorned with sparkly crochet, printed lace and gold netting. Whilst some of the curtain-esque dresses seemed a little heavy, Stringfellow is clearly gifted at manipulating different textures – the fine-knit cream designs with intricate layers of ruffles were sheer romance.  


Kirsty Stringfellow, illustrated by Zarina Liew

On the other end of the scale, Danielle Reed and Rachel Wolstenhome both had fun with a tough, urban take on sportswear. Reed paired white bobby socks with black Dr. Martens, black grommet-laced waistcoats with slouchy joggers and manipulated aertex fabric into loose jumpsuits. The effect was a strong collection of grunge-inspired sportswear, with PVC fabrics and a monochrome palette adding a gothic edge.  


Danielle Reed, illustrated by Gabriel Ayala

Wolstenhome created the sole male collection on show, and her futuristic sportswear borrowed shapes and fabrics from a manner of sportswear, a mash up of scuba-esque one-pieces, foam hoods, and deconstructed jersey sweat pants, with cut-out holes and harem-style drapes and folds.  

Rachel Wolstenholme, illustrated by Aniela Murphy

A special mention should also go to Sunny Kular for her attempt to spice up school uniforms with Indian elements. We loved seeing that boring grey fabric we remember from our school days twisted into sari shapes, ties and blazers in Ikat prints and jackets emblazoned with a ‘Ganesh’ school badge.  


Sunny Kalar, illustrated by Donna McKenzie

But UCLAN’s strongest suits are clearly printed textiles, forming the basis of two of the most eye-catching collections.  

Jessica Thompson’s surreal collection of printed designs was full of quirky, cartoonish imagery, manipulated onto a spectrum of designs, from fitted shift dresses to sporty anoraks. Everything demanded attention, from the Beefeater printed slip that made the model into a marching drummer, to the dreamy shifts emblazoned with chimps and birds.

Some images were distorted into unrecognisable shapes and quirky patterns, forcing a closer look.  The final piece was a red, floor length printed mac, that looked like it was printed with moon craters – the coolest cover up for a rainy day.  


Jessica Thompson, illustrated by Gemma Milly

Saving the best till last – Sara Wadsworth’s amazing printed collection chimed with the patriotic mood. The whole collection was crafted in chiffon, printed with British icons – the Union Jack, Big Ben the London Eye and what looked like parts of Trafalgar Square, all blown up, re-sized, and patterned across wisps of fabric.


Sara Wadsworth, illustrated by Abi Daker

Wadsworth let the prints do the talking, choosing almost sheer chiffon in muted shades of grey, white and occasional splashes of olives and teal. Bright yellow bras peeked out from beneath the designs, ranging from floor length kaftans to a Vivienne Westwood-esque draped dress, and a sweet smock top and short combo. Who would have thought our most touristy landmarks could be re-imagined into such wearable designs?

Images courtesy of catwalking.com

Shinsuke Mitsuoka

The world of fashion is notoriously fickle and grabbing the attentions of a fashion crowd for any extended period of time seems tricky. Catwalk shows do their best with an array of light shows and thumping soundtracks which could sometimes do with a warning.

Nottingham Trent have prepared it all for their outing at Graduate Fashion Week with glossy door staff, viagra 100mg designer goody bags and even a rather trendy loitering DJ (wearing a somewhat dubious puffa jacket). They’re raring to go, diagnosis but there’s just one cog in the works; a serious lack of bums on seats. Well, there is of course the age old excuse of being fashionably late, but even the pinched smiles of women ferrying around have started to crumble.

All becomes clear as a dull thudding bass infiltrates the theatre and the sound barrier takes a bashing as the trill of hundreds of screaming girls hit the roof. Apparently Tinie Tempah is a big deal (and from the glimpse I got, genuinely teeny Tinie). He’s had all of one song, which luckily for Nottingham Trent, he dispatches quickly, and soon a bustle of activity swells at the theatre doors. If Tinie didn’t make them ‘Pass Out’ (see what I did there? Here all week folks…) then the efforts of Nottingham Trent’s 2010 graduates will surely do their best to stun the senses. 


Live front row illustration by Lauren Macaulay

Nottingham Trent has a clear passion for encouraging students to experiment with unique techniques and textures in knitwear, producing a modern and varied aesthetic across the course. Their catwalk show oscillates between detailed, intricate knitwear and sleek takes on womenswear with bursts of energy injected at intervals by the likes of Emma Dick, showcasing sharp, graphic prints of televisions and arrows just at home in a museum of Pop Art as the runway. Integrated hoods give the look a futuristic feel but there’s a touch of the retro about her two-tone body con jumpsuit with a classic 1960s palette contrast between red and black.

Nottingham Trent keeps the volume turned up with Claire Hartley’s cutaway knitted one pieces, exposing flashes of green, yellow and red for a futuristic sci-fi look. Hartley’s dedication to forward thinking stretches beyond the aesthetics as she hopes to generate a new innovative, zero waste policy in manufacturing to ensure the sustainability and evolution of the clothes. 

By now Tinie’s long forgotten as each model stalks down the catwalk to puffa DJ’s painfully hip soundtrack. Nikki Lowe dazzles with gold lamé suits complete with built-in gloves worthy of an evil Jackie Collins penned character, but flashlight necklaces add a distinctive disco feel caught somewhere between the 1970s and the 1990s.

Miranda Boucher’s collection is a dark and luxurious celebration of femininity with plush midnight blue coats and velveteen details just obscuring the model’s modesty.  

Emma Philpot’s knitwear seems to grow from the models bodies, twisting and turning upon itself and forming knots and twists likes a chunky chainmail, while Tiffany Williams continues the fairytale edge with her menswear collection in dark, brooding colours and heavy volume that weigh on the shoulders as a hulking, masculine presence. Backs reveal shimmers of gold thread intertwined, adding a lighter side to the depth of her work. 
Jenna Harvey’s dresses change at every turn as each layer of tiny fabric is double printed and loosely set so as it moves a new picture is revealed. At times it feels like 3D glasses are needed just to keep up with the transformation before your eyes.

Meanwhile, Phoebe Thirlwall’s beautiful knitwear dresses, inspired by the intricacies of the skin, show a level of workmanship that is breathtaking under the lights of the catwalk. Each ribbed layer clings to the models with hundreds of different levels working together. Her hard work has clearly not gone unnoticed as her work was also photographed by renowned artist Rankin, a stunning portrait duly displayed in grand terms at Earl’s Court.


 
Izabela Targosz’s equestrian turn on tailoring injects some more colour into Nottingham Trent’s show, with jackets made with horsehair pockets and backs adding a silky but quirky feel. Riding hats are the natural yet perfect accessory to a collection that shows an equal strength in its attention to detail for an upheaval of the British tailored look. 

Shinsuke Matsuoka’s work is saved for the final spot and with the breathtaking effect of the garments, it’s easy to see why. Bondage style zips snake across panels of black hi-shine material; the sound of the clothes are a foreboding presence in themselves, but as six outfits stand together the models are transformed into an unnervingly attractive chain gang from the future. I’m not sure if it was this effect or not, but my camera also spluttered its final breaths at this point, perhaps overwhelmed by the power of Matsuoka’s collection.

In any case, it proved a spectacular way to end things and is not something I can imagine being trumped by Tinie any day soon.

Images courtesy of catwalking.com

Categories ,1960s, ,3D, ,Bondage, ,Claire Hartley, ,dj, ,Earls Court, ,Emma Dick, ,Emma Philpot, ,Graduate Fashion Week, ,Izabela Tagosz, ,Jackie Collins, ,Jenna Harvey, ,knitwear, ,london, ,menswear, ,Miranda Boucher, ,Nikki Lowe, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,Phoebe Thirlwall, ,Pop Art, ,Rankin, ,Sci-Fi, ,Shinsuke Matsuoka, ,Tiffany Williams, ,Tinie Temper, ,vogue, ,Womenswear

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Week 2011 Gala Awards Show: The Winners

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show 2011-Rory Longdon
Rory Longdon was a worthy winner of the Graduate Fashion Week 2011 George Gold Award. Okay, order it’s a gold award, order I geddit already.

Just over two weeks ago I was invited to attend the Gala show for the Graduate Fashion Awards. I’ve not been back to the student fashion shows since I graduated 15 years ago (gulp). Back then they were held in the Islington Business Centre and I don’t remember much about them at all – I had already decided that my future did not lie in catwalk shows and so I only had a static stand to show off my printed textiles designs… which I had honed in the knowledge that I would prefer to pursue a career in illustration. Isn’t it funny how the circle turns? I never have been able to get away from fashion… but then again nor have I abandoned illustration. I could never have predicted then just how my life would have panned out in the years since.

Joey and Sam Faiers TOWIE by Munroe Bergdorf
Joey Essex and Sam Faiers from TOWIE. Photo by Munroe Bergdorf.

It’s been a shaky year for the Graduate Fashion Show brand – the sponsorship that was needed for it to continue was finally taken on by George at Asda at the last minute. Select guests were treated like royalty – the cast of TOWIE may not be considered the height of style in most forward thinking fashion circles but they were feted like true celebrities at the Gala show. Myself and Naomi? We couldn’t get past the cordons in the middle of the Earl’s Court conference centre for a drink and a natter with friends beforehand (I tried unhooking the cordon, the security was not very amused). Inside the TOWIE crew primped and preened, basking in the attention. Sound familiar? Exactly the same fiasco for Matt Bramford last year. So instead we tried our luck at the brightly coloured George stand, to no avail, though their PR was happy to give me their spiel, drink in hand. More than one woman was wearing the same dress… but then that’s the dangers of mass fashion for you.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show 2011-George

Inside the Gala show area notable bodies from the fashion world were relegated to the fifth row, whilst TOWIE agents hogged front row seats. (There was one next to me, I did my research later.) Luckily I was able to snag one at the last minute or there would be no photos here for you. All of this preamble pretty much sums up the atmosphere of the Gala show, which was all about the glitz and the razzmatazz. The mannered presenting from Clothes Show stalwarts Jeff Banks (complete with inappropriate comments) and his cohort Caryn Franklin (for whom I have a very large soft spot) was at times incredibly painful.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show 2011-Lauren Brown & Sophia Sabados, UCA Epsom
Graduate Fashion Week 2011 review-Lauren Brown & Sophia SabadosGraduate Fashion Week 2011 review-Lauren Brown & Sophia Sabados
I was excited to see Lauren Brown & Sophia Sabados – students from UCA Epsom (where I have lectured) – win the Media and Design Award (presented by Grace Woodward) for their magazine.

A myriad of famous guests (Sophie Ellis-Bexter – new album to promote, the Sugababe Heidi Range, Carole White, she of Premier modelling agency fame) were led onstage to present awards as this year’s crop of excitable graduates whooped and a-hollered. It was nice to hear everyone in such a celebratory mood… but when one of the presenters declared that she hoped all graduates would go into paid jobs straight away I couldn’t help but have a little bit of a snigger.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Christina Economou 2011
International Award winner Christina Economou of the Istituto Marangoni, Paris.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Dominique Kral 2011Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Dominique Kral 2011
Zandra Rhodes Catwalk Textiles Award winner Dominique Kral of Northbrook College Sussex.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Wong Jee Chung 2011Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Wong Jee Chung 2011
Stuart Peters Visionary Knitwear Award winner Won Jee Chung of Nottingham Trent University.

Oh my days… here I am all these years down the line and I’ve yet to figure out how I can make a proper living out of my fashion textiles degree. It’s a lovely sentiment, but it’s just not the reality of the fashion industry. This is a place where only the most dedicated survive… or those with rich/famous parents. Unless you pursue a career in the mass fashion industry. A degree in fashion is now about so much more than just design, and the UK is still the world industry leader for well trained young fashion creatives in all kinds of fashion related disciplines. There was an element of realism in the recommendation to look to industry for jobs, presumably an effort to quash too many unrealistic ‘next McQueen’ expectations. Since I graduated the choice of degrees which train people to work in the fashion industry has multiplied massively. It’s now possible to pursue a plethora of different avenues such as styling and promotion which really weren’t available when I went to university back in the early 90s. All of this corresponds with a massive growth in our insatiable desire to consume mass fashion… do you see a connection? My, how I struggle with this industry at times.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Felix Wolodymyr ChablukSmith 2011Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Felix Wolodymyr ChablukSmith 2011
Menswear Award winner Felix Wolodymyr Chabluk Smith of Edinburgh School of Art.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Marrisa Owen 2011Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Marrisa Owen 2011
Womenswear Award winner Marrisa Owen of University of Central Lancashire.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Rory Longdon 2011Graduate Fashion Week Gala show Rory Longdon 2011
George Gold Award winner Rory Longdon of Nottingham Trent University.

The Gala show awards closed in a huge tumble of gold foil more suited to a crucial key change at a boy band concert. Oh how times have changed. I wish this year’s graduates all the best. More on the winners and other show finalists coming up shortly.

Graduate Fashion Week Gala show 2011-Rory Longdon finale

Categories ,Carole White, ,Caryn Franklin, ,Christina Economou, ,Dominique Kral, ,Edinburgh School of Art, ,Felix Wolodymyr Chabluk Smith, ,Gala Show, ,George at Asda, ,George Gold Award, ,GFW, ,Grace Woodward, ,Graduate Fashion Awards, ,Heidi Range, ,Islington Business Centre, ,Istituto Marangoni, ,Jeff Banks, ,Joey Essex, ,Lauren Brown, ,Mass fashion, ,Media and Design Award, ,Menswear Award, ,Munroe Bergdorf, ,Northbrook College Sussex, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,paris, ,Peters Visionary Knitwear Award, ,Premier, ,Rory Longdon, ,Sam Faiers, ,Sophia Sabados, ,Sophie Ellis-Bexter, ,Sugababes, ,The Clothes Show, ,TOWIE, ,UCA Epsom, ,Womenswear Award, ,Won Jee Chung, ,Wong Jee Chung

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Amelia’s Magazine | Betty Jackson A/W 09

The day started off with London transport, buy visit this site as usual, doctor ruining my life. The district line was delayed/suspended/just took bloody ages, meaning that I missed the first show I intended on seeing. This was due to over-crowding at South Kensington, as Fashion Week started during half term week, cue 6 million children/parents/tourists trying to get to the Natural History Museum, along with the fashionistas….not a good mix.

By the time I got to the BFC tent, the fashion pack were filing in for the Esthetica launch. Esthetica is the only show of its kind in the world, dedicated to celebrating ethical designers. Noir kicked things off to the not-so-subtle sounds of Hole’s Celebrity Skin, with a polished but edgy collection of, perhaps obviously, black clothes. There was then a drastic music change, a choir singing Creep by Radiohead, a strangely haunting rendition to accompany the more delicate shape of the second half of the collection. With the much quieter musical accompaniment, the unfamiliar sound of hundreds of camera shutters going off can be heard and fittingly adds to the ethereal quality.

Best discovery of the day? The Fashion Bus! When I was told about it, it conjured up images of a magical, playdays-style bus of couture. In reality it’s a coach with London Fashion Week written down the side but still, it served its purpose of getting us from the main South Kensington location to the Hippodrome in Leicester Square, without having to cross the path of my arch-enemy, London transport.

The reason we trekked across town was for Ashish. And it was completely worth it, as what unfolded was far more than just a fashion show. There was live music provided by VV Brown (wearing a dress from the collection), acrobats, a big circus setting and clowns….well, not actual clowns but the pom-poms on some of the looks combined with the hyper colour clash styling surely owed a debt to Coco somewhere along the line.

Ashish-acrobat.jpg

Ashish-Vivi-Brown.jpg

And here are some snaps of what we’ll all be wearing come Autumn:

Ashish-AW-09-3.jpg

Ashish-AW-09-2.jpg

Ashish-AW-09-4.jpg

Ashish-AW-09-5.jpg

Perhaps not that last one so much…
Particular note should be taken of the amazing wedged, animal print shoe boots that all the models – and VV Brown were sporting:

Ashish-AW-09-shoes.jpg

This show was brilliant escapism, with some very wearable individual pieces once you separate them out from the styling. It felt like an afternoon at the circus, rather than just a fashion show, and in such a competitive week, Ashish has ensured that his show will be one everyone remembers this season.
It’s funny seeing the different crowds the different shows draw. The morning started off at the Margaret Howell studio, sick where the British establishment of fashion journalists turned out to see her A/W 09 collection. It was very, stomach well Margaret Howell, order country cosy, duffel coats, blues/greys, some cute over the knees socks and silks mixed with wools. A well put together, safe collection.

margaret-howell-2.jpg

margaret-howell1.jpg

I was, excitingly, sitting opposite Alexandra Shulman though, which did take up most of my attention. British Vogue has been wiping the floor with American Vogue in recent times, and it was thrilling to be in such close proximity to her, lets face it, what fashion journalist doesn’t secretly want to be editor of Vogue?

Now onto the different crowd part. Across town, in a swanky church in Marylebone, a full scale production was taking place in aid of the Qasimi A/W 09 show. Not so much journalism elite, more, well Simon Le Bon. But his presence was so to be explained as the show began…

Melinda Neunie was also there and here’s her review of the show:

I must say the Qasimi team managed to pull in quite an impressive crowd. Their pre-show champagne reception outside the beautiful St Mary’s Church was ablaze with bold prints and bright colours, with attendees clearly taking advantage of the nicer weather.

qasimi-4.jpg

The catwalk show was equally remarkable. Set against an exotic woodland backdrop, Qasimi propelled us into a world of fantasy, romance and passion with their A/W 09 collection. The all black luxury range exuded wealth, elegance and sophistication through sumptuous cashmere and Italian silks complete with gleaming outsized diamond accessories.

qasimi-3.jpg

An opera sound track opened the show alongside a fantastically poised Erin O’Connor clad in a sculptured corset gown and extravagant feathered headdress. The model was closely followed by Lily Cole, Yasmin Le Bon and Jade Parfitt.

Draping gowns, corset tops and intricate stitching dominated the show, which was closed by the spectacular Carmen Dell’Orifice who couldn’t help but give us a cheeky bum shake on her way out.”

qasimi-1.jpg

qasimi-2.jpg

We didn’t recognise final model Carmen Dell’Orifice but everyone else did as she got whoops and cheers as she sashayed down the catwalk. The show was not at all what I was expecting, but it was epic! Seeing those famed models in the flesh, the dramatic music and, as Music Editor Prudence put it, the general Zoolander quality of it made it entertaining in the extreme.

We were penned into the lobby at the Vauxhall Fashion Scout like (well-dressed) sheep for an hour, viagra dosage but it was worth it to experience Horace’s A/W ’09 collection. The label’s founders, web Adam Entwisle and Emma Hales, website like this have made a welcome return to their androgynous roots.

Classic Horace is synonymous with distressed hand washed leather and oversized separates, and there was plenty of that to be seen. Baggy trousers contrasted with beautifully cut jackets, all accessorised with leather totes and large knitted scarves.

horace-1.jpg

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Entwisle and Hales continue to play with the idea of gender in their designs. Pale-faced men in tunic dresses followed women in combat boots down the catwalk to pulsing rock beats. The collection is said to embody the spirit of 18th century monks, and the modesty of a monk’s attire was reflected in the voluminous hoods and clean monochromatic palette.

Such an abundance of black layers and boots could have become repetitive, but thankfully vibrant plaid prints provided bursts of colour, evocative of London’s punk heritage. It’s small wonder Horace has built up such a cult following.

Lebanese born designer Hass Idriss showed his first collection at London Fashion Week yesterday to a very odd crowd at Belgravia’s Il Bottaccio. I say odd because the majority of the black-clad crowd sported face-lifts, symptoms and I was amongst a very small percentage of the audience who weren’t wearing any make-up (yep, the boys did too – some even applying YSL lip gloss as a pre-show fixer).

They were, however, resplendent and I’d like to thank the fabulous woman who sat three seats down from me on the front line wearing the largest, roundest hat possible. Differing from the usual up and down runway, Idriss presented his collection in an L-shaped room, with myself and the mad hatter on the second, final arm of the catwalk. I am nursing a bad case of RSI in my neck this morning as I type: straining around that hat was quite a feat.

Visual obstacles aside, Idriss’ collection was a brave and opulent one. Credit crunch? What credit crunch?

Inspiration for this first collection had been drawn from Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Mermaid. The show kicked off with a booming soundtrack and two airbrushed-gold Adonises slowly glided along the runway, followed by the first model who hopped in a skin-tight fish tail dress, aided by the Adonises and a pair of gold embelished crutches (mermaid overkill, I’d say – and a little bit silly. I mean, honestly!)

idriss-3.jpg

Gradually the collection grew in maturity whilst retaining the theme of the sea – luxurious weightless fabrics such as organza and tulle were enriched with sea water pearls and Swarovski crystals, reminiscent of early John Galliano for Dior Couture.

idriss-1.jpg

idriss-2.jpg

The palette was mixed, ranging from organic pastel colours, golds and creams, through to shocking reds with black to contrast. A brave craftsman, Idriss pushed his capabilities to their limits across a range of techniques, heavily reliant on embroidery to the highest standard. Cuts were quite disparate – some gowns were a-line or floated gently to the floor whilst others were sculpted around the body with severe hems. The black satin and velvet mini dress with a charcoal chapel train, titled ‘The Mermaid’, was a particular highlight.

idriss-4.jpg

Throughout, most of the ensembles were hits, especially with the whooping audience. A couple of misses, though – and the award for unwearability goes to this little number – a plastic transparent poncho with beaded corals (and blood, sweat and tears according to the press handout). Hans Christian Andersen will be turning in his grave. Bonkers. Overall, a daring and immodest first outing for Hass Idriss. Keep a look out in the future – you saw him here first.
At 9.15 on a Sunday morning, stomach it seemed only the most diligent (and probably least hungover) of the fashion clan that made an appearance at the Betty Jackson show. It was worth the early rise, case to say the least.
We were bombarded with a visual palette of textures, soft colours and hemlines; resembling a painting whose medium changed by the paint stroke, from smooth watercolours to thick, rougher oils to scratchy pencils. Betty Jackson kept her collection airy, light and colourful- perhaps in an effort to float past or ward off next winter’s approaching cold and heavy credit crunch scenario.

Main colour themes drifted from cupcake and candy pastels to darker, richer shades;conjuring up autumnal images- like those in Monet’s more wintry landscapes. Fur, frills and subdued shades were combined in adorable, snappy pencil skirt and blouse/knitwear combos, very Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

betty-jackson.jpg

Jewellery was designed exclusively for Betty Jackson by Alexis Bittar, this included hand carved, hand painted lucite earrings and necklaces, whose sheer extravagance reminded us of Edie Sedgwick’s outrageous choice in accessories.

Purple tights and red belts are two of the most notable components of the collection, while some of the models wore versatile backpacks- probably Jackson’s effort to incorporate utility in what is becoming a very non-frivolous time.
Statement coats and fur boleros were thrown in for the warmth factor. Best model of the show was hands down, Jourdan Dunn.

Betty Jackson believes that “every new collection presents a new challenge, but most people feel more confident and sexy if they are comfortable” and we can see a huge representation of this in her latest designs, the bright and often outrageous colour schemes are juxtaposed in a variety of simple styles- which maintains the conservative nature of her clothes. These are garments that not only appear comfortable, but also versatile- they are not only adaptable to real, working life but also pieces you could and will wear for seasons to come.

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Amelia’s Magazine | University of Westminster: Photography Ba Hons Graduate Show 2011 Review

University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 review-Zara Ilic
Detail of photograph by Zara Ilic.

University of Westminster had the lion’s share of the Free Range showspace last weekend, store taking up the entirety of the huge hangar like space, symptoms which has lately been suffering a lot of roof leaks. Within those walls was a plethora of different photographic styles. I picked up on just a few in the show.

Tomas Hein Artefact
Tomas Hein porcelain figure
Tomas Hein looked into contemporary archaeological finds – from the former inhabitants of 43 Gerrard Road, Islington. After eviction only the porcelain statues of this Chinese family remained alongside some black and white informal family photos. Huge prints emphasised the pathos of his finds. His accompanying zine was featured on It’s Nice That. Find Tomas Hein on twitter here.

University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Louise Smith de Vasconcelos
University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Louise Smith de Vasconcelos
Louise Smith de Vasconcelos looked into Awareness and Perception in a series of close up still lives, some of which were more discernibly objects that I knew and recognised than others.

Genevieve Rudd dementia
I was most taken by Genevieve Rudd‘s collaborative project with her grandfather James Pettigrew, named 64 Althea Green. Together they documented her grandmother’s decline into dementia, with slabs of paint overlaid on conventional photography in a semi crazed manner.

University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Samantha Cawson
University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Samantha Cawson
University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Samantha Cawson
Samantha Cawson also chose to create an installation with the bastardised photographs of the Victorian and Edwardian era – faces sewn over with coloured cotton threads. Weirdly, I had the idea to do this with some of my old magazine tearsheets only yesterday, when I was considering how I could have contributed original art to the Art Car Boot Fair. Though maybe not over their faces…




Beth Vieira calls herself a ‘lens-based artist’ and is interested in cinematic and narrative photography. ‘Coming from an academic environment, my work tends to demonstrate a conceptual reflection onto psychoanalytical and sociological dramas‘. Her three video loop installation was called Scouting for Boys and featured staged tableaux that called to mind the kind of generic imagery that is familiar to us from films and television. At first glance these appeared to be static photos but then eyes, breath, wisps of emotion revealed them to be alive and moving people. Subtley clever.

Ed Hannan rowley_way
Ed Hannan tackled that favourite photographic subject, the weird beauty of council estates – mounds of curvaceous and angular weathered concrete rendered beautiful in the loving detail. It’s a shame there’s nowt more to be seen online yet.

Shanna Taylor Hoarding the Garage
Shanna Taylor Hoarding the Garage
Shanna Taylor Hoarding the Garage
University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Shanna Taylor Hoarding the Garage
The Garage struck a resonant note with me – Shanna Taylor‘s documentation of her father’s incredible hoarding showed how it has threatened to engulf his family (he’s built an extra garage where everything is getting mouldy and moth eaten). Rather uncomfortably it reminds me of my own tendency to hang on to absolutely everything… just in case it’s needed somewhere down the line, and also because I hate to create any kind of waste that might end up in landfill. ‘Much of what he has accumulated is junk…. However for him each item has such a high degree of perceived value that he cannot bear to part with it.’ Yup, I know that feeling only too well.

University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Jorge Anthony Stride
University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Jorge Anthony Stride
Uncertain States by Jorge Anthony Stride featured a series of ethereal landscapes, quite similar in fact to Lydia Anna Stott’s work at Nottingham Trent. Even his written explanation was eerily similar too. I must say I am very drawn to this kind of photography – something about the dreamlike state of it is very appealing. There must be something zeitgeisty going on here.

Zara Ilic Plitvika Jezera
Zara Ilic Plitvika Jezera
Zara Ilic Plitvika Jezera
I loved Zara Ilic‘s Plitvika Jezera – a colour saturated documentation of the waterfall in a national park on the borders between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia. The waters change colour constantly according to the mineral deposits and angle of the sun, something which she has captured extremely evocatively. And to my excitement I was able to tweet her immediately to say how much I liked her work because she included her twitter profile on her business card. Yay!

Aniela Michalec-Perriam Pur-spi-kas-i-tee
Aniela Michalec-Perriam Pur-spi-kas-i-tee
University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Aniela Michalec-Perriam Pur-spi-kas-i-tee
Aniela Michalec-Perriam worked with children to complete her final project – Pur-spi-kas-i-tee tackled the plight of kids with communication difficulties, saddled with trying to make themselves understood in a society that negatively stereotypes them. The children were all given the opportunity to contribute to their portrait in any way they liked. The blurring of faces and simple brightness of the resulting photos was very evocative.

University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Jason Pierce-Williams
University of Westminster photography graduate exhibition 2011 Jason Pierce-Williams
Lastly, Jason Pierce-Williams visited the studios of artists who are driven to make art despite the lack of commercial success. His candid portraits portrayed the stoicism of those artists who are determined to keep producing art regardless. ‘None of the artists portrayed are household names.’

All in all there was a very high quality of photography amongst Westminster students, but too many have rested on their laurels when it comes to promoting their work online – it was a massive struggle to find degree show images. Some students hadn’t even bothered to upload their images to the Free Range showcase pages, hence the reason that this blog features my relatively crappy photos of photos. Trawling the web in search of images I have also come to realise just how much help creatives need with learning Search Engine Optimisation – they really don’t make the most of it. I can’t stress how important it is to graduate with a strong online presence so that interested parties can track you down. Is it any surprise that Tomas Hein, with his great website, blog and twitter feed, has received such notable accolades already? If not now, then when?

Categories ,2011, ,43 Gerrard Road, ,64 Althea Green, ,Aniela Michalec-Perriam, ,Art Car Boot Fair, ,Awareness and Perception, ,Beth Vieira, ,Bosnia and Herzegovina, ,Council Estates, ,Croatia, ,Dementia, ,Ed Hannan, ,Eviction, ,Free Range, ,Genevieve Rudd, ,Graduate Shows, ,Hoarding, ,Islington, ,It’s Nice That, ,James Pettigrew, ,Jason Pierce-Williams, ,Jorge Anthony Stride, ,Lens-based artist, ,Louise Smith de Vasconcelos, ,Lydia Anne Stott, ,Nottingham Trent University, ,photography, ,Plitvika Jezera, ,Pur-spi-kas-i-tee, ,Samantha Cawson, ,Scouting for Boys, ,Search Engine Optimisation, ,Shanna Taylor, ,The Garage, ,Tomas Hein, ,Uncertain States, ,University of Westminster, ,video, ,Zara Ilic, ,Zeitgeist, ,zine

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