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Day 4 at GFW


Day Four
Its’ the final day of the ultimate celebration of young British fashion talent.
LFF reporter Didi Okoli went backstage after the Salisbury and Berkshire show.
Through the sweltering heat I managed to catch a very flustered Charlotte Chrispherson, final year student at Salisbury College she’d just finished her show and was in the middle of a post show huddle and tipple, with well wishers and tutors congratulating her in between sips of champagne.  The 27 year old has been nominated for tonight’s gala show which she describes as “a massive fantastic honour, especially for me, as I’ve been out of college for 5 years, to come back and be nominated for the gala is unbelievable.”
Charlottes’ collection is based on the military with parachutes and camouflages a running theme.  She chose to steer clear of the obvious khaki prints and opted for daring reds and blacks instead.  Her 3 piece menswear collection was a mix of ripped matt satin, and chiffon sort of military style club wear.
Charlotte has already received a lot of interest, namely from Disorder magazine, who hope to arrange a shoot based on the black savage theme.


Charlotte Chrisherson

All images obtained from www.wgsn.com

Another college that can boast a good graduate fashion week are Ravensborne College of Design and Communication.  “There’s’ been something to say about Ravensbourne everyday I’ve been here says a passing trade visitor.
Chloe Constantinidi’s collection was particularly influenced by the modernist novel, ‘Orlando’ by Virginia Woolf, making clothes that defy the gender restrictions of the past and present.  “It was the Bloomsbury set of the 1920’s that inspired me.  Those girls who existed as an elite creative group, challenging the glamorous housewife role represented at that time.”

From the Berkshire came Dyana Elba 23, final year fashion and textiles student, Reading college.
Through the backstage manic she managed to spare a few words for LFF. “Although it’s hot and stuffy back here I’m still glad to be a part of graduation fashion week I’ve looked forward to it since the first year of my course.”
Dyana’s collection was the only African inspired collection and adopted a since approach to the African high fashion.  Her obvious inspirations were from being African herself, “I wanted to show young Africans like myself that they could wear African designs in their everday contemporary clothes.”  Judging by the interest shown in her pieces it looks like she has succeeded in bringing a glimse of African fashion to the western world.



Jay Shipley                            Shane Rhone                    Hatice Kavak

Graduates from: Kent Institute of Art of Design


Loretta Franklin                      Andrea Saiano                 Werda Lahfa

Graduates from: University College of Northampton


With a few moments to spare after judging the Salisbury and Berkshire show, I asked David Jones on his thoughts so far;

“Everything is building up now to the big evening gala, judges are extremely busy making their final decisions, and the catwalk shows continue unabated.
Again, I’m impressed by the large numbers of industry people making their way to Battersea park for this very important event.
This four day promotional programme of British designer talent, graduate fashion week is such an inspirational part of the total fashion scene and an ideal opportunity for new designers to meet the real world and four the real world to meet designers.

I hope tonight’s event will go well and I applaud all of those associated with the organisations of the event for the smooth way in which the whole operation has gone, including managing as best as possible, the problems associated with the heat.  Well done to all involved !”

The finale is always the best day for celebrity spotting; Zhandra Rhodes, walks past are stand, her hair as bright as ever; GQ magazine editor, Dylan-‘I think i‘m a celebrity’-Jones, enough said!
A friendly T4 presenter June Sarpong accompanied by Footballers Wives actress Caroline Chikiezie; A very pink looking Karen Franklin (ex clothes show presenter) and as I’m binning my ‘borrowed’ press pass I bump into a very tanned Tamara Beckwith who was “very pleased to be here”.
Big thanks to Glamour magazine editor Jo Elvin, for sparing a few moments, Dylan could get some tips from her.

Celebrity spotting stops as I haven’t succeeded in blagging a ticket to the gala, my day inevitably draws to a close.  I’m left inspired by the inescapable creativity and talent that surround me and the humbleness of the young designers.
Desperate for a ‘no limits’ shopping spree I’ll go armed with the tips picked up from Graduate Fashion Week 2004.


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