RGS Worcester students excel at national Young Fashion Designer awards

09 Jul 2012

Two local students swept the board at the final of the Young Fashion Designer 2012 competition, providing the winner and joint runner-up of this prestigious event.

Harriet Gale won the event with her tailored jacket in woollen tweed, while Leila Cattell’s evening gown secured the runner-up spot at the final, held at Kent College in Pembury, Kent. Both girls have just completed their A Levels at RGS Worcester and were selected from over 150 entries to make the final six, where they had to showcase their work in front of ten judges drawn from all parts of the fashion world.

“When I saw all the entries I was flabbergasted at the standard,” said Harriet. “So to win was a real surprise, because this sort of thing never happens to me! The judges all gave me their business cards and offered work experience, which will give me a real step up in my dream of a career in visual merchandising.”

Both girls have studied Textiles at RGS from GCSE through to A Level and had to undergo a rigorous judging process. After setting up their display, featuring their chosen garment and other work, they had to give two presentations to the judges. These included representatives from the Design and Technology Association, the Textile Institute, a fabric agent who supplies Burberry and Paul Smith, the London College of Fashion and a designer and garment technologist.

The competition was devised by Karen Wintle, Head of Textiles at Kent College, to showcase excellent fashion design on a national basis. The guest speaker was Dr Julia Gaimster from the London College of Fashion, who stressed that the pupils needed to show technical development, innovation, commerciality, print design and fabric creativity in their work.

“It was such a fantastic experience,” said Leila. “Seeing all the other candidates’ work was fascinating, as were the textile workshops that were organized as the judges were busy deliberating. It has given me a major boost before I start my Art Foundation course in Manchester in September.