UCA dominates Gold Award final at GFW
Fashion students from the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) starred at Graduate Fashion Week (GFW) 2012 by taking three of the top ten places in the prestigious Gold Award final.
Fabulous collections from James Walker, Alice Griffiths and Emma Beaumont ensured that UCA had the most students shortlisted for the £20,000 grand prize at Earls Court on 13 June, out of the 40 institutions and 1,000 students entered.
UCA did not leave GFW empty-handed as BA (Hons) Fashion Journalism student Kerrie Donnelly won the Media & Design Award.
Now, in its 21st year, GFW showcases the best BA Graduate fashion design talent in the UK and offers students a platform to launch their careers thanks to the national press coverage and industry engagement.
Gold Award nominee, Emma Beaumont who studied BA (Hons) Fashion Atelier at UCA Rochester, said: "I'm so happy to have got this far in such a major, national competition.
"GFW has been a fantastic experience: I've met lots of important people, received great exposure and feel really positive about starting a career in the fashion industry."
Fellow nominee, Alice Griffiths who is about to graduate from BA (Hons) Fashion at UCA Epsom, said: "I'm really proud to be selected for the Gold Award and reach the Top Four in the Menswear competition out of so many strong designers.
"GFW has been inspiring - it's taken me out of my comfort zone, I've networked with some important people, the publicity is great, so I've really enjoyed the whole experience."
UCA Epsom classmate, James Walker, said: "I've really enjoyed GFW and had some brilliant feedback.
"It would have been amazing to win an award but I think getting through to the final will open lots of exciting door because a lot of influential people have seen my work, so I can't ask for more."
Away from the catwalk, UCA Epsom's Bianca Hammond missed out on the Per Aquum Marketing Award but Kerrie Donnelly won the Media & Design Award, which was judged by Dazed & Confused co-founder Jefferson Hack and journalist Melanie Rickey.
Kerrie Donnelly, who is 20 and from Louth, Ireland, said: "It feels amazing to win here at GFW. I can't believe that my magazine was chosen out of so many great projects by such big-name judges. It's crazy to think that a little idea I had a few months ago can lead to a big award like this."
Donna Ives, Associate Dean of Fashion at UCA, said: "I think it's a really big achievement for UCA to have three students reach the Gold Award final. It's great to see that our students are producing some of the best work in the country which is re-affirming for the staff and the University.
"Many of our students who didn't reach the final are also winners because brands such as Burberry have approached our students after seeing their work at GFW - so it's an amazing event for all of our graduating students."
UCA is no stranger to success at GFW - UCA Rochester's Myrto Stamou beat 300 hopefuls to win the overall Gold Award in 2009. After being crowned the best young fashion designer in the country she was asked to recreate two of her dresses for River Island, who sold her designs nationwide, and has just launched her own fashion label in Greece.
Last year's Gold Award finalist, Lyudmila Lane, was selected to show at Pret a Porter in Paris in January 2012.
For more information contact:
David Reilly, Press Officer, UCA
T: 01252 892939