A student from the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) has won the prestigious Womenswear Award at Graduate Fashion Week (GFW).
Hannah Williams, who studied BA (Hons) Fashion at UCA Epsom, also picked up the GFW Fashion Innovation Award for her ground-breaking silicone collection during a star-studded ceremony at London ‘s Earls Court last night (6 June).
It brings the total number of awards for UCA at GFW 2013 to four, with Jessica Kelly winning the Barclays New Business Award and a £15,000 scholarship and Danya Sjadzali who picked up the All Walks Diversity Now prize. UCA Rochester’s Lauren Dutton made the Gold Award final.
Hannah Williams, who is 22 and from Barry, Wales , said: “It feels incredible to win this award. As a womenswear designer, you dream about winning a womenswear award but you never actually think you’ll win one – it’s truly amazing.
“Showing at Graduate Fashion Week is the aim for every fashion student, so to be shortlisted for the Gold Award and win these awards is beyond my wildest dreams.”
Simon Ofield-Kerr, UCA Vice-Chancellor, said: “This is a great personal achievement for Hannah and indeed for the whole Fashion team at UCA Epsom.
“At UCA we are committed to making it possible for our students to produce extraordinary work and with a broad-range of prize winners this year across it is clear we are at the forefront of UK creative arts education.”
Steven Dell, BA (Hons) Fashion course leader, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Hannah has won the Womenswear Gala award – she is such a talented and highly creative designer, who has certainly earned this very prestigious accolade.
“I believe this award is in recognition of Hannah’s use of pioneering techniques and unconventional materials, which she has used sympathetically to create a very wearable but groundbreaking womenswear collection.
Fellow Gold Award finalist Lauren Dutton who studies BA (Hons) Fashion Design at UCA Rochester, said: “I’m really proud of myself to have got so far in a national competition so I’m not disappointed about not winning at all.
“Getting to the Gala Show and having this experience has given me a lot of confidence and recognition so I’m very excited about taking the next steps in my career.”
Away from the catwalk, UCA Epsom BA (Hons) Fashion Management & Marketing student Jessica Kelly won the Barclays New Business Award and a scholarship for a Masters degree at Instituto Marangoni London.
Jessica, who is 21 and from Iver, Bucks, said: “I feel very lucky to have been picked for this award. It’s great to be recognised at such a prestigious event and win an award which is judged by top industry professionals.”
UCA Epsom Fashion student Danya Sjadzali won the All Walks Diversity Now award which will see her design go into production at Own Label.
Danya, who is 21 and from Jakarta , Indonesia , said: “It’s such an honour to win this award and to receive recognition for my work around the issues of equality and diversity.”
All Walks co-founder and TV presenter Caryn Franklin, said: “We loved Danya’s work, we got a real sense of her drawing on her own heritage and combining it with a high fashion aesthetic very successfully. Her designs are innovative and classic, we’ll be watching out for her.”
Graduate Fashion Week is the world’s leading event for fashion graduates.
Showcasing the work of over 1,000 graduates from some of the most influential UK and international universities, GFW represents the future of creative design talent. Attracting over 20,000 guests each June, the event features 22 catwalk shows, large exhibition from over 40 universities and an acclaimed Gala Award Show.
UCA is no stranger to success at GFW – UCA Rochester’s Myrto Stamou won the overall Gold Award in 2009.