LONDON, November 6, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
Thursday 5th November 2015 marked Graduate Fashion Week's 25th anniversary celebrations, with a catwalk show and reception inside the Houses of Parliament. One of the most celebrated Graduate Fashion Week alumni, Christopher Bailey, the Chief Creative and Chief Executive Officer of Burberry, has been officially welcomed at the event as its first ever patron.
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Bailey's history is significant. His work was a critical sensation when it appeared at GFW in 1991, and since his appointment at Burberry in 2001 he has been instrumental in helping London become the most important hub in the world for fresh creative talent and innovation in design.
Bailey was the first winner of what is now established as the prestigious Graduate Fashion Week Gold Award. Commenting on the Graduate Fashion Week Awards, he says, "I was extremely fortunate to have won the first Graduate Fashion Award over 20 years ago. It became a fundamental stepping-stone in my career, giving me a platform that allowed me to pursue the incredible opportunities that I have experienced since. It is a true honour for me to be able to support the next generation of exciting design talent in the UK, during Graduate Fashion Week's very special 25th anniversary year."
Joining Christopher Bailey as Graduate Fashion Week patron is award winning designer, Victoria Beckham. Since launching her label she has gone from strength to strength to become one of fashion's most celebrated international figures. On her appointment, Victoria Beckham says, "I'm honoured to become a patron of Graduate Fashion Week. It is so important to support and mentor young people and GFW provides an essential platform for them at this important time in their life. I'm delighted to be joining Christopher Bailey, working together on such a worthwhile project."
Additional alumni of the annual event include Stella McCartney, Antonio Berardi, Marchesa, Julien MacDonald, Christopher Raeburn, Agi & Sam and Sophie Hulme.
During the past 25 years, Graduate Fashion Week has become one of the most significant, international events on the fashion calendar - an innovative showcase for the next generation of creative talents, and a springboard for new design labels. With thousands of the most promising students from around the world taking part each June, the four-day event attracts 30,000 guests including many notable industry figures.
Mark Newton-Jones, Chairman of the Graduate Fashion Week charity, highlights the unique qualities of the June event, which sees 40 UK and 15 international universities and colleges take part: "Graduate Fashion Week has become a highlight in the fashion industry's calendar and, for many up and coming designers; it's the moment their careers begin. It's a fantastic opportunity to discover the very best of emerging global design talent. In the run up to our 25th anniversary celebrations, our remit is bigger than ever. We now have 1000s of graduates from around the world receiving our backing and support year on year. I consider myself honoured to be chairing Graduate Fashion Week and I'm delighted that Christopher Bailey, our first ever winner, is also joining us as our first official patron alongside Victoria Beckham.
The UK Fashion & Textiles Association and Damian Collins MP, chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Fashion and Textiles Group and one of the most powerful supporters of the modern British fashion industry, hosted the event. "There is growing recognition of the importance of the fashion industry to the creative economy of the UK," says Collins. "This is something we excel at, and fashion is an important export industry of which should be proud. I want members of parliament to be aware of the industry's breadth - from the catwalk to the factory floor and design studio."
John Miln, CEO of UKFT said: "Graduate Fashion Week is hugely important to the development of our industry's next generation and the UK Fashion & Textile Association's involvement with this event for a third year reinforces our ongoing support of new and emerging talent. We are thrilled to once again bring together some of fashion's brightest aspiring young designers with leading figures in the industry and key policy makers at the Houses of Parliament."
The Graduate Fashion Week 25th anniversary catwalk show and reception has been held in association with Barracuda Search.
SOURCE Graduate Fashion Week