Introducing The New Fashion Talent You Need To Know About From Graduate Fashion Week

Here's the run-down from the world's biggest ever student fashion event


by Alexandra Haddow |
Published on

In Britain, we might be overly polite, love a queue, can’t fathom rudeness and find it impossible to say what we actually feel (please do step on my feet, please!). But we also know how to produce great young designers that shape the international fashion landscape.

The finale of Graduate Fashion Week earlier this week began on a poignant note: there was a moment’s thought for the late Louise Wilson, the formidable Central St Martins tutor who ensured the likes of Chistopher Kane, Jonathan Saunders and Mary Katrantzou, amongst countless others, became the names on everyone’s lips and in everybody’s (dream) wardrobes.

With her in mind, 25 selected collections from the hundreds shown over the last few days strode moodily down the catwalk – leaving it hard to believe that these clothes were made by mere students. Remember feeling like you were never going to see the light of day again when writing your dissertation? Well imagine doing that, as well as producing a collection of clothes, which are going to have a definite impact on your career.

So here are our pick of the super-inspiring bunch. Keep your eyes peeled for future sightings, too, because we’re pretty sure that one of them will be the next Alexander McQueen. As for what we’re taking from it? You’ll soon see us a mile off in our pastel fur, oversized trousers, exposed ankles, block shoes and silver metallic skirts, with not a muted colour in sight.


Aimee Dunn – Nottingham Trent

Yes, we know it’s menswear, but who doesn’t love stealing their boyfriend’s clothes? Dunn’s collection of monochrome looks were superbly put together. And Thatcher on the front of a jumper? You can’t say that didn’t stand out in our minds. This collection won the Menswear Award at the end of the evening.


**Grace Weller – Bath Spa **

The embroidery and workmanship that had gone into Grace’s beautiful collection of Erdem-esque floral and sheer dresses was incredible. Not only did she pick up the Womenswear Award, but she walked away with the £10,000 Gold Award to kick start her label. More of this, please.


Rebecca Rimmer – UCLAN

How do you feel about brightly coloured clothes painted onto bigger clothes? Sounds ridiculous but works amazingly on the catwalk, as Rebecca Rimmer proved. Her cartoonish collection was both innovative and original, as well as having a high impact on the audience when it closed the show.


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 backpacks which are incredibly relevant to right now.


Lauren Lake – Kingston

Coloured faux fur made its mark last season and Lauren Lake’s first model strode out in a huge, oversized, pink, fur-lined, shearling coat, so it was always going to be a winner. Teamed with silver metallic skirts and block boots, pink PVC and top knots, we just loved everything about it. Super kitsch, yet fresh at the same time.


Colleen Leitch – Edingburgh College of Art

Eighties’ 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. Wear with a slick of red lipstick and channel Melanie Griffith in Working Girl.


Camilla Grimes – Manchester School of Art

Pink fur permeated this collection (are you spotting a trend here? These girls are following in Shrimps’ footsteps), but this time alongside a more delicate and feminine ensemble that had hints of Jonathan Saunders (never a bad thing). Sheer embroidered shirts and a hooded bomber jacket with a dog’s face print were just two items we need for next season already, and it’s not even off the catwalk.


**And The Best Accessory of the Night?


An orange briefcase bag disguised as a boom box. Need we say more?

Follow Alexandra on Twitter @MissAHaddow

Pictures: Alexandra Haddow, Getty

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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