This week our GFF Talent is Hannah Shaw from Manchester Fashion Institute. Her final collection is all about social media: the value of sharing a true reflection of yourself online vs. a curated image of perfection. Read on to find out why Hannah is passionate about showing your honest self online.

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What was the starting point of your inspiration for your final project?

I was flicking through Instagram, and I had a thought about how some people show this “perfect” life, and it made me think that no one’s life is actually as perfect as they make it seem — most of the time it is completely staged or only a small part of their life. My final collection is called ‘A Modern Day Fairytale’ around the idea that social media has a way of creating this fairytale life that people aspire to have, but in fact all people show is what they want us to think they have.

With my final collection being based around the idea of this fake and staged life, I have designed and made three outfits that are big, bold and completely over the top - emphasising that what we show on the outside isn't necessarily who we actually are or what we feel on the inside. My garments will be used to create a look book which I'm really excited about!

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How has it evolved from your initial ideas and what have you learnt along the way?

My initial ideas started off quite small, but after delving deeper and asking my friends opinions on social media, I noticed something quite sad - some people post things like selfies, because they want to be liked and they feel the need to post everything they do just so it looks like they are happy and have an amazing life. This project has taught me that it doesn't matter what other people are doing, as long as you're happy with what you're doing yourself.

What is the message behind your project that you want people to take away?

The main message of my project is to inform people that what you see on social media is not always the truth - it is what people want you to think is the truth, emphasising the idea of this ‘fairytale life’. I hope that people view my collection in a way that makes them think more about themselves and stop caring so much about what other people are doing and focus more on loving yourself. Don’t be anyone else, be you; and be proud of what you are doing!

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What is your plan once you finish your BA?

My plan for when I finish is to take some time for myself and have a break from academic life. Final year has been tough and I have put so much hard work into my collection that I think I’ll need a holiday. But after that, my aim is to find a graduate job in either styling, design or pattern making and hopefully earn enough money to be able to travel the world in the future... that is the dream.