On Wednesday 11th October, GFW Managing and Creative Director Martyn Roberts and renowned British fashion journalist Hilary Alexander OBE held a Graduate Fashion Week masterclass at Northumbria University.

The GFW masterclasses were designed to give current fashion students an insight into Graduate Fashion Week, information about the prestigious event and how it can benefit their future careers in the industry. Martyn and Hilary are visiting universities across the country to educate students in how to present a coherent and successful collection and portfolio, to make the most out of participating in the largest showcase of BA graduate talent in the world. 

“It’s the talent that has got stronger, there is a real sense of confidence when it comes to the student’s creativity and design”

– Gok Wan, Stylist and GFW Global Ambassador


Without the guidance and knowledge based upon the years of experience of Martyn and Hilary, students may find themselves thrown in at the deep end of the demanding fashion industry. As an expanding sector, fashion finds itself being ever more competitive and Graduate Fashion Week provides the platform to ease the transition from student to work. Hilary and Martyn seek to share their insights through the masterclass program, sharing the valuable asset of knowledge with the approaching graduates, as their familiarity and experience allows them to provide discerning observations on the ever growing, changing and demanding business of fashion.

Northumbria offer several fashion based courses from Fashion Design and Marketing to Fashion Communication. At Northumbria, they offer a dynamic and exciting approach to fashion through active project-based learning, combining design practice knowledge with intellectual and transitional skills.  Students then apply their creativity in real life scenarios through placements in industry in the UK, US, Europe or Asia.  These placements give students the chance to develop specialist skills, a professional attitude, and the vision needed to challenge and lead as designers.

Graduate Fashion Week is the ideal opportunity for graduates determined to make it in the fashion world, it can open doors and lead to inspirational global collections. GFW has provided the initial platform for internationally renowned designers such as Julien MacDonald OBE, Stella McCartney OBE and Giles Deacon to name a few. Some of these incredible alumni have gone on to develop some of the worlds most influential brands, and with the industry being boundless, there are always opportunities for any graduate to do the same and concur their dreams. 

“I owe everything to Graduate Fashion Week. I was extremely fortunate to have won the GFW award over 20 years ago. It became a fundamental stepping-stone in my career, giving me a platform to pursue the incredible opportunities that I have experienced since.”

-Christopher Bailey MBE, Chief Creative Officer, Burberry (First winner of GFW gold award in 1991)


We look forward to holding several more masterclasses, across the country, from Brighton Univeristy to Nottingham Trent. Make sure to check our social media to see if we're coming to a city near you. 


The second Masterclass will be coming to the University of Brighton on the 3rd November 2017. Check back for more details!



Words by Amber Whitaker