Recently, De Montfort alumni were invited to Hong Kong, to take part in the GREAT Festival of Innovation! The four day festival imagines the future by exploring how technology functions in various industries- including fashion. We've already seen the potential of fashion working alongside technology to decrease it's carbon footprint, but the potential for greatness is limitless. 

De Montfort University is the lead education partner at GREAT and showcased the work of students, graduates and academics in VR, Game Art, Fashion, Architecture and Cyber Security. Fashion Design graduate Abisola Akanni and Master’s student Raabia Arif brought their stylish, colourful collections to Hong Kong. Hair and make-up was arranged and the models were made up at the British Consulate before heading for the venue, where the innovative designs captured the attention of the international audience. 

Abisola Akanni has presented her designs at both Africa Fashion Week and was chosen to participate in the Best of GFW17 show last year. Her focus on loud prints and using shape and colour to explore the notion of 'clashing' was a primary talking point at GFW17, and led to Abisola taking her designs to Fashion Futures in Dubai along with other creative emerging designers from the event. 

“To have the chance to show my designs here and to have such great feedback – it’s amazing.”

Abisola Akanni, De Montfort University Graduate & GFW17 Alumni

Contour Fashion student Carys Gill was also on hand to help organise and co-ordinate the pop-up fashion salon, and helped show the work of DMU knitwear designer, and Best Of GFW17 participant, Bethany Griffiths, to the audience. Hong Kong is a major hub for the fashion industry, with a booming design industry and a base for many international brands . As part of their #DMUglobal experience, Fashion students visited lingerie company Clover and Royal Spirit, which produce garments for high end and mass market names.

“Coming to Hong Kong and having this experience has definitely made me think of working overseas. You talk to people who have moved away to work and it makes you think, ‘I could do this’. Opportunities like this are so important for young designers. It’s our platform to show industry and the general public what we can do on an international stage.”

Raabia Arif  

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