Graduate Preview: 2013 FAD Competition Finalists

FAD Competition
In the second of our young designer previews, we talk final collections with five of the 2013 FAD Competition finalists ahead of Graduate Fashion Week next month.

See graduate collections by the 2013 FAD Competition winners in our first blog post preview.

Joseph Horton, Nottingham Trent University

GFW_Joe Horton

GFW_Joe Horton (1)

My final collection inspiration: is contrasts of scale, for example how we as humans use architecture as huge living vessels, just as micro organisms use our bodies.

My favourite piece: is either the white wool and patent leather jacket, or the white wool and patent leather dress. This is because I like how clean and crisp the silhouette looks and that the detailing isn’t lost, as it can be when you work in black for example.

Taking part in the FAD Competition: was my first important deadline. It prepared me for my final collection deadline and helped me understand what would be needed from me. It has also helped my pattern cutting skills. I now feel much more confident.

After I graduate: I’m going to apply for an MA but I would also like to further my knowledge of the industry by working/interning with UK and London based designers.

At Graduate Fashion Week I’m most looking forward to: seeing student’s work from other universities.

Lucinda Roberts, UCA Rochester

Lucinda Roberts

My final collection inspiration: was taken from the shapes that represented the Bauhaus ( circle square and triangle), also looking at minimalist art, architecture and design for the colour palette and silhouette.

My favourite piece: would probably be the square quilted jacket,  down to the fact that it looks so simple but effective and it was probably the piece that I spent the most time on, as quilting the fabric alone took a whole weekend!

Taking part in the FAD Competition: was a good source of making contacts and meeting other people within the industry. It also helped me to realise there are people who appreciate and like my work other than me!

After I graduate: My plan is to get a job within design, also to save up and eventually do a Masters.

At Graduate Fashion Week I’m most looking forward to: showing my collection and spending time on the UCA stand with my portfolio, meeting people from the industry.

Matthew O’Brien, Liverpool John Moores University


IMG_6994 IMG_7000

My final collection inspiration: is from looking at how technology and fashion have become one, and how fashion has taken different routes due to the technology now available. I concentrated on how every social space is designed to suit a user’s need. I wanted my garments to adorn the body, while also reacting to the wearer’s needs and requirements, for example altering in shape and form to cool the wearer down through moving flaps.

My favourite piece: has to be the garment that moves. After showing it in the final of the 2013 FAD Competition I think it was a great success, and I have since been able to improve and increase the movement in the garment.

Taking part in the FAD Competition: really helped in the development of my work. It forced me to explore my idea of electronics in fashion, but also to look at how my garments could be more commercially viable. After FAD I have been able to look at my work with a fresh eye, and it has given me confidence in my unconventional ideas.

After I graduate: I will move to my new studio ready to start work on my collection for London Fashion Week in September, alongside other projects and  freelance work. I will be looking to get employment in the industry to gain the experience I need to enable me to go as far as I can with my fashion career.

At Graduate Fashion Week I’m most looking forward to: being a part of the whole experience and having the chance to show my work to industry experts in the hope of furthering myself in any way possible.

Kimberley Phillips, De Montfort University

DMU 3rd Year Graduate Fashion show judging. Kim Phillips

My Inspiration: Was my take on Britain today. I focused in on the idea of Posh vs. Poor, looking at stereotypes from both cultures, and drawing on prints and silhouettes from these specific areas. I have used a lot of plastics and vinyl coatings because everyone needs to keep dry in the British summer!

My favourite piece: is the coat seen in the photograph. It’s where my collection started and what has driven all the other pieces in my collection. My true love is designing outerwear, and even though I hated the process at times, it’s definitely the piece I’m most proud of.

Taking part in FAD Competition: gave me a massive confidence boost. Having my work judged from outside people was really insightful, and to be chosen as a finalist in the FAD competition was a huge compliment!

After I graduate: I’m hoping to get a job in either outerwear or sportswear design.

At Graduate Fashion Week I’m most looking forward to: Once again, seeing my designs come to life and go down the catwalk in London! It’s so unreal, and I’m so excited! This is something i have been working towards for three years and it’s all coming together now, and it feels so exciting!

Estela Nevinskaite, University of East London

estela nevinskaite final collection

spiritual purification line up

My Inspiration: was initially influenced by a spiritual belief that every human being has a soul and reincarnation actually exists. Every innocent soul is embraced by several layers of imperfection, evolving from our dubious decisions and actions from previous lives. Unbelievably, some minerals and especially geodes are parallel to our souls, as they are formed in similar ways. These Earth’s treasures have inspired this concept – a hidden beauty beneath an ugly surface.

My favourite piece: is the first garment I made – a dark grey, burnt taffeta coat. This outfit was the beginning of transforming my previous experiments into a wearable structure.

Taking part in FAD Competition: was an amazing lifetime experience. I would definitely say the FAD competition increased my self-confidence as a young designer. My hard work was noticed and all the feedback that I got pushed me to go forward. It was so much easier to make my final collection after the experience of participating in FAD.

After I graduate: I will definitely do a few internships during the summer. Of course, I would love to go into fashion design eventually. Maybe even a Fashion Design MA in couple of years? Why not! The only thing I am sure about is that I’m not moving away from the fashion industry.

At Graduate Fashion Week I’m most looking forward to: my university catwalk show. It is going to be an amazing moment, when our hard work will be presented to the public. The moment we have been waiting for over the past three years!

Read the first of our graduate previews showcasing collections by the 2013 FAD Competition winners here. You can see the 2013 FAD Competition finalists and winners at Graduate Fashion Week from Sunday 3rd – Wednesday 5th June. For the full catwalk schedule and to purchase tickets visit

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