ten london fashion graduates to watch
Another year and another batch of insanely good designers all hoping to make it big in the industry. Here are 10 of London's graduates who made the grade. We've got our eyes on 'em, and you should too.
Grant-James Povey, LCF
Enter Grant-James Povey, the LCF graduate making some noise on the menswear scene. For his final MA collection, the menswear designer channelled all things Tudor, with a series of ruffles, puffed up sleeves, smocking, and quilting, but reimagined for a modern generation. Think King Henry VIII meets Issey Miyake. This one will go very far, indeed.
Lydia Smith, Westminster
From her BA menswear collection's bright orange velvet suits and leafy prints to its patchwork jackets teamed with velvet shorts, Westminster graduate Lydia Smith channelled 50 shades of fall. One to watch for sure.
Joseph Standish, LCF
Joseph Standish. Now, where to start? The LCF graduate blew our minds with his recent BA collection, in which he sent out a horde of masked models — part human, part monster (think shredded denim hair and furry orange eyebrows), and part Basquiat painting. Truly bizarre, but utterly incredible. Inspired by Japanese cartoons and traditional men from the Midlands who've worn the same denim jackets for over five decades, Joseph's collection is a backlash against high-end fashion not being relatable to normal people.
Supriya Lele, RCA
RCA womenswear graduate Supriya Lele's plastic fantastic MA collection — titled An Intimate Distance — is a dreamy, candy-colored exploration of femininity. Lele offered a new spin on materials that may be deemed as trashy, transforming them into a luxurious collection of floating bubble-gum pink PVC pieces, pulled together with gold tape and modeled by Jess Maybury.
Sophie Schmidt, RCA
We want to visit the galaxy where RCA womenswear graduate Sophie Schmidt's designs have hailed from. In her otherworldly collection, Schmidt explored light, form, and its correlation to the human body through iridescent floating structures. Like a vision of the Northern Lights (highlighted by the minimal, sheer dress underneath) Schmidt's sculptural pieces nail that futuristic cyber-babe look. Yes please!
Yasemin Cakli, Westminster
Oversized cuts were the order of the day for Westminster's Yasemin Cakli. Her menswear collection mixed heavy denim and flowing cotton, surf-shack gradients and tie-round-the-waist color. With a presentation this strong, it's no wonder she stuck her name all over it — patterned scarves were emblazoned with the moniker "YAZ" for all to see.
Philip Ellis, CSM
CSM graduate Philip Ellis draws inspiration from the multiculturalism of his hometown in the Peak District. For his BA menswear collection, the former Vetements and Meadham Kirchhoff assistant sent an array of models turned activists down the catwalk, armed with politically charged slogans ("don't bite the hand that feeds you" was sprawled across some of the models' chests) and colorful badges. The collection borrows cultural tropes from all over the world, from the Palestinian Keffiyeh — a type of traditional headscarf — to Rupert Murdoch's divisive newspaper The Sun.
Sergiy Grechyshkin, CSM
Ukrainian designer Sergiy Grechyshkin has been making all the right noises. In 2015, he won the LVMH Scholarship Grand Prize before scooping the Sophie Hallette Award for being, well, just fabulous. Inspired by the ritual of bacchanalia throughout history, Sergiy sent a procession of 20s style flappers down the catwalk for his CSM graduate collection. Using a combination of mesh, lace, and wire structures — and a palette of shocking pinks and violet — Sergiy perfect tempered a feminine look with a masculine attitude.
Philip Luu, Westminster
Turning the Brexit storm clouds peach, purple, yellow, and blue — that was the modus operandi of Westminster graduate Philip Luu's BA womenswear collection. With billowing rosettes of color layered both over and under the well-constructed garments, the strong silhouetting read as a both nod to the proto-power dressing of the women's suffragette movement, as well as a testament to keeping your head in the, well, clouds.
Mao Tsen Chang, RCA
Womenswear Knitwear student Mao Tsen Chang tackled animal rights issues with her wild and hard-hitting collection. Rethinking the fur industry and animal rights, the young designer explored the relationship between humans and animals. Her eclectic pieces used a wide range of fabrics, patterns and colors including faux fur and leopard print.