We asked some of the most important judges, trustees and friends of the event why they think it’s important to be involved with Graduate Fashion Week.
As a retailer it’s a privilege to be involved in Graduate Fashion Week to see the phenomenal talent that is coming through. We are always looking for new designers to excite our customers and to bring something fresh and new to the collections that we present each season. When you think of the incredible success that past winners such as Christopher Bailey, Giles Deacon and Stella McCartney have had, it shows how important it is to support and nurture young talent from the start.
I am delighted to be involved in Graduate Fashion Week. I remember the dedication, hard work and sleepless nights that go into producing a GFW collection and show.
It’s the starting point for many successful careers and I’m looking forward to seeing our future stars.
Chief Merchant, Harrods
Graduate Fashion Week offers the first opportunity to view the collections of the future of British fashion. The awards provide an important platform for a new designer, giving them the chance to demonstrate their talent to leading figures. At Harrods, we always look for new designers with great creative and commercial value and recognise the importance of initiatives such as GFW that provide a national focus for the talent of students.
Graduate Fashion Week Trustee
Graduate Fashion Week is the biggest platform for fashion graduates in the world, and this is really a chance to see the birth of new fashion talents. It is an opportunity to see hundreds of collections under one roof, both in the exhibition and on the catwalk and it is exciting to share in the enthusiasm of the students showing on the catwalk for the first time. There is incredible teamwork and spirit as different colleges get together and it is a complete melting pot of ideas. Not just the fashion, but also other areas of the industry can be seen in their infancy, such as the marketing course at Northumbria which always has an amazing stand.
Brand Director, George at asda
George continues to be one of the biggest supporters of young talent and we’re proud to be the title sponsor of Graduate Fashion Week for the second year running. We are committed to nurturing the next generation by investing in skills, promoting fashion as a career choice and highlighting the breadth of roles in the industry, and providing job opportunities and experience as they progress in their futures.
London is the best place to find new designers and Graduate Fashion Week provides the perfect opportunity for spotting new labels. Nothing beats the buzz you get when you spot a collection that has a point of difference from everything else in the market. The follow up to this is also incredibly rewarding: working closely with the designer on fits, quality and production and seeing the end result when collections are in our stores and selling like hot cakes!
Managing Director, Liberty
It is a distinct pleasure to be involved this year with Graduate Fashion Week. Coming from America, one continually hears of the tremendous talent showcased each year. I am particularly grateful to be able to see the newest talent, latest innovation and future trends all first-hand. It is invaluable for a retailer looking for the next big talent, a supplier looking for a future design director or for a textile house to find the next ‘eye’ to be present at GFW and take note. This represents the future.
As a graduate it is important to be represented in the best environment. Graduate Fashion Week provides young, fresh talent with a platform to showcase their collections to be seen by the best people in the industry.
Fashion editor, International Herald Tribune
All events involving fashion students are important. They are the industry’s future – it’s as simple as that. But I do think that Graduate Fashion Week is particularly important because of its strength in numbers. The idea of bringing different colleges together creates a unique showcase for London. There is a chance to survey in one area a great deal of talent. The volume of professionals from across Europe and beyond who both sponsor projects and attendthe event speaks for itself. The UK is also fortunate in that sponsors really seem prepared to invest in the future of fashion, which is something about which I am passionate.
I’m delighted to be involved with Graduate Fashion Week. It’s so important to support new talent, particularly in these difficult times when getting a job is harder than ever. There is a wealth of talent in the UK and it’s really important for the retail industry to invest in original design to set itself apart and compete with competitors.
By putting a spotlight on the new creatives British fashion universities are producing, I hope we can help give them a leg up onto the career ladder, while continuing to grow and develop the British retail industry.