We held our first American showcase in New York on Tuesday, partnering with SmartFocus the Digital Messaging Cloud. We worked closely with major brands and publications during the trip, to highlight 27 years of work with fashion's next generation.
Two exciting major events took place on Tuesday, aimed at showcasing the fashion talent around today. Firstly, in partnership with SmartFocus the Digital Messaging Cloud, we held a high-profile breakfast at the Madison Avenue headquarters of Ralph Lauren, for major industry players, with guests including representatives from Calvin Klein, Michael Kors, Reiss, Swarvoski, Boohoo, Barneys New York, Gap, Fatface, Department for Trade and Investment and Ralph Lauren; and secondly an executive lunch for journalists hosted by ex-Graduate Fashion Week Chairman and Hearst Publications Chief Executive, Terry Mansfield CBE, at Hearst Towers. Further one-on-one meetings were held with major industry representatives and US publications!
"Graduate Fashion Week is an incredibly important organisation and one that is close to my heart. It's support of young design talent at the beginning of their careers and its bridging of the gap between education and employment is phenomenal and I am so delighted to have been part of it.
I look forward to watching the initiative expand into its next exciting phase in New York, enabling and empowering British graduates to strengthen their ties and creative bonds in one of the most dynamic cities in the world through a series of brilliant programmes"
Christopher Bailey MBE
The American showcase featured a curated exhibition of final-year collections and portfolios from a selection of Graduate Fashion Week's Class of 2017, across all fashion disciplines.
The line-up included the work of Kate Clark, ex-Kingston University, currently working at Chanel in Paris; Daniel Rynne, ex-Arts University Bournemouth, winner of the 2017 Debenhams Menswear Award and currently working in Debenhams design studio; and four American graduates, Emelie Cleveland, of the New School Parsons; Lyudmila Sullivan, Pratt Institute; and Margarita Ng Ng and Cristina Ng Ng, both of FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) - all of whom were finalists in the International Catwalk Competition at GFW17 that took place in London last June.
“The trip has been so well received by the US fashion industry and publications houses based here in New York. We have had the opportunity to build new relationships during our week-long showcase which will go on to support our graduates. From this success, we plan to continue our international growth and visits to the institutes who take part in our annual International Catwalk Competition Show each June.”
Martyn Roberts, Managing Director of Graduate Fashion Week
Hilary Alexander OBE, Martyn Roberts and British designer and GFW Global Ambassador Holly Fulton visited the PRATT Institute in Brooklyn, to view the work of final students in the studio. From knitwear designs and creative portfolios, the team saw the intricate development work, learning about the pieces and their concepts from the students themselves. One student from PRATT will be selected to showcase their work as part of the International Catwalk Competition at Graduate Fashion Week 2018, taking place from 2rd - 6th June, in Truman Brewery, Shoreditch, London.