The scene for this season’s London Fashion week was set by the memorial service for Professor Louise Wilson OBE who, as head of the MA at Central St Martin’s, had had a seminal influence on the development of fashion talent and the positioning of London as one of the major fashion capitals.
J Moon – Fashion Shout 2015
Representatives of the global fashion industry as well as her graduates attended her memorial on the first day of LFW. It was a celebration of her contribution to the fashion industry as well as that of fashion on contemporary life.
It also made me reflect on how talent emerges onto the catwalk and into the shops. Attending numerous shows and presentations over the weekend it underscored how well London grows its talent. Talent needs an ecosystem of support to survive. In London you can see recently graduated emerging talent at Fashion Scout. I went to see LCF graduates J Moon and Maryanna Jungman.
Here designers are provided with a platform to develop their collections and learn how to sustain quality of ideas and production over several collections away from the safer environment that a fashion education provides. Without Fashion Scout nurturing these designers and providing them with this opportunity it would be hard for new talent to gain the necessary and hard won experience of showcasing.
Alongside the young designers are the fresh-faced fashion photographers, PRs, journalists and illustrators all cutting their teeth on supporting and promoting the designers in putting on their presentations and shows. After their time at somewhere like Fashion Scout designers can emerge onto the schedules of for example Fashion East or gain support from NewGen and then ultimately find their way onto the main LFW programme.
Whilst the London factor can be summed up visually as with Sibling’s which was spikey, punk and uncompromising its in material, colour and shape or Sophia Webster’s installation where acrobatic models and cosmic sets provided an extraordinary showcase for her equally arresting shoes. For me it’s how London nurtures it’s talent that sets it apart from other fashion cities.