A Stitch in Time For British Fashion
I was very pleased to be invited along to the launch of the ASOS Stitching Academy at Fashion Capital last week.
The school has been set up in response to the high numbers of youth unemployment in the area and as part of Fashion Capital’s continued commitment to help retain skills in British manufacturing. There will be 10 learners going through the school every 6 weeks, each graduating with a Level 1 award in Fashion and Textiles. With its first learners due to start on Monday the factory was a hive of activity.
Engineers and electricians left the Mezzanine floor at 3am the night before and we could see the space was really taking shape. What better place to learn about the industry than above the buzzing Fashion Capital factory floor whose team were working on orders for ASOS. The skills gained will include sewing, stitching, machinery operation, inspecting & measuring and health & safety, all trained at The Factory in Haringey, London.
There was great excitement and slight relief in the air when the brand new Juki machines arrived as we toured the factory. ASOS has not only donated this equipment but also a number of reconditioned specialist industry spec machinery and a suite of new computers. I am sure the first cohort enrolling on Monday will not have an inkling of how madly the graceful swans have been paddling under water this week, and indeed for the last year in preparation. They will be greeted by a shiny new sign to label the stitching school, a suite of top spec equipment and an enthusiastic team.
Creative Skillset has been happy to help write the qualification and are looking forward to coming to meet the learners to discuss the wide array of careers available to them in the fashion and textiles industry.
Best of luck stitchers with this fantastic scheme. I’m looking forward to hearing your success stories in the coming months!