Come May, for fashion students all over the country, it is a challenge not to go into complete designer meltdown as final collections are finished and the last touches added, or as has become common, months of work are completely scrapped and redone in the final weeks. But when the season of graduate fashion shows rolled around this year, assured that the quality and originality of collections this year was set to be even better than the last, I went to go and see the graduate fashion show at Liverpool John Moores University with fashion photographer, Matt Ford, to see whether this years batch of budding designers could live up to expectations and pick out our favourites to shoot with…
The standard this year was incredibly high, both in standards of quality and finish, and in design. Some showcased daring innovative fashion, while others chose to keep with strong classic styles and add a modern twist; some managed to seamlessly blend in with this season’s major designer collections.
After the show we rounded up a few of our favourites to chat about their inspirations, aspirations and snap them with their clothes.
Click images to see detail..
Twenty two year old Megan Woodhouse’s collection centres around a theme of protection; suits of armour and shells. “Well clothes are a form of protection,” she laughs, “cheesy as it sounds!” Structured shapes in soft pastel chiffons combine with creamy suede linings to make for a collection that is both classic but still very current. Megan’s main focus is Luxury Womenswear, simple with an edge, and her dream job would be working for Dolce and Gabanna, whose clothes are a complete contrast to her style, “It’s probably the reason why I want to!” She says the muse for her ready-to-wear designs is young, funky, but classy with her own style, and that’s just what I think her collection reflects.
Chio Ohajuru specialises in both couture womenswear and accessories, a combination which she is sure will make her stand out from the crowd, when, if her dreams come true, she starts her own label as an independent designer. Chio plans to make her label completely unique by offering women what she calls “the full M.O.T.” whereby she offers the clothes and styling, accessories, make-up and hair. So who is the woman she designs for? “She’s glamorous, stylish, unique, clothes for her a need not a want” Her collection of sculptural pieces used a palette of only white, while her origami-esque bags came in every colour of the rainbow.
Taking inspiration from her favourite designer, Stella McCartney, Shelley Harris’ collection of sophisticated, wearable sportswear exudes effortless athlectic chic with hints of this seasons pastel tones. Harris places impact of wearability and she says they are perfect for a woman who “is active, not a glamourpuss.” If she doesn’t go on to become a fashion designer, Shelley says she would like to teach Fashion based courses at university, to pass on the knowledge she has aquired herself.
Sharon Fernandex designs her contour fashion womenswear for “the average, twenty-five year old elegant sophisticated woman” paying great attention to detail and looking at many textile aspects. With this collection cleverly capturing the essence of nature and having a vintage aspect it’s no surprise that Sharon dreams of working for a world
renowned couture house. “Working under Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel would be amazing!” she beams. Her collection is luxurious but fresh, think flowing chiffon cut in an exciting new way paired with delicate flowers. And the standout piece? Definitely the exquisite camel coat with silk flower detailing.
Chantelle Mooney’s chic collection achieves “maximum drape with minimum seams,” by using immaculate pleating and rather unforgiving fabric! She said the stretchy fabric was a nightmare to work with, but the work has definitely paid off as she has created an expensive looking collection that is effortlessly beautiful in dusty pastel tones. Her muse is about 25, confident and fun loving. Chantelle says she wants her to be able to go to work in one of her pieces, then throw a pair of heels on and go for a night out. After uni, she says she wants to design ready-to-wear collections to sell in her own boutique because she doesn’t like the thought of having no say in the design in a big company.