In June, our 21 Fashion Futures finalists took part in an intensive Summer School at the University of East London. With only 5 days to produce their final garments for London Fashion Week, the pressure was on.
The week had its highs and lows, with days filled with excitement, stress and a good few learning curves! The challenge was tough, but with plenty of help on hand from FAD volunteers and each other, the finalists perfected their pattern-cutting skills and learnt to sew on industrial machines. They painted, beaded, quilted, laced, fringed and embroidered until their garments were complete, ready to be showcased at Fashion Scout on Monday 19th September.
We caught up with finalist Lauren Algar about her Fashion Futures experience so far.
Why did you apply for Fashion Futures?
“I applied for Fashion Futures because I thought it would help me to develop my confidence and I know it’s a really good opportunity. I want to apply for fashion design at university and Fashion Futures is really highly regarded.”
Tell us about your design and how it was inspired by the brief.
“My design is a man’s poncho influenced by the architecture of the Taj Mahal and by Indian streetwear and the Holi festival. I liked how the shapes of the buildings were all really curved so that was a big influence in my work. Researching another culture was my favourite part, I loved doing the research, creating my moodboards and finding everything out in depth.”
How has your week been at our Summer School at UEL?
“My week’s been stressful but I’ve really enjoyed it. I’ve made some really good friends so hopefully they’ll be friends for life and we’ll support each other at university.”
How excited are you for LFW?
“I’m super excited about the fashion show; I can’t wait to see my designs go from concept to catwalk. It will feel like such a big sense of achievement…hopefully it’s like a glimpse of what is yet to come in my fashion future.”
What has Fashion Futures taught you so far?
“Fashion Futures has taught me a lot of independence, before this I would never have travelled up to London on my own, but because this is something I really wanted to do I forced myself to travel this far. I’ve also learnt a lot about communication and teamwork. FAD has taught me so much it’s really helped me develop as a designer, looking back at my drawings at the start to the illustration at the end, I can see how much my technique has improved, I feel like I’m finding my style and identity as a designer in the industry!”
What’s next for you?
“I’m going to do a fashion internship over the summer and I’m going to look for more opportunities, whether I just work in retail or something, I’ll still be learning about fashion.”
What challenges do you think young people face when trying to get jobs in the fashion industry?
“It isn’t an easy industry to get into and I think FAD has really helped me make connections with people. In fashion you have to be very driven and help yourself to reach your goals, so I think it’s very hard to make connections and it’s very hard to know what needs to be done.”
Fashion Futures would not be possible without our sponsors at Natwest and George at Asda.