News: Students' Designs On Success At London Alternative Fashion Week

Ancient tradition and the literal cutting edge of fashion design are combined in the University of Derby's collection for one of the UK's biggest catwalk shows.

Alternative Fashion Week 2012 - running at the Spitalfields Traders' Market in London this week until Friday,April 20 - attracts thousands of visitors to see hundreds of fresh and exciting designs from around the country.

Twenty designs by the University's third-year BA (Hons) Fashion Studies degree students will have their own show on Thursday afternoon, April 19, on a 'Hues of Blue' theme - with the collection taking inspiration from both centuries' old tradition and the latest textile techniques.

Designer Emily Platt, 22, originally from Milton Keynes, looked to traditional knitwear worn in countries such as Russia, Mongolia and by native Arctic tribes for her creation.

She said: "The whole outfit had to be handknitted. I'm really excited to be going to the fashion show with it."

Fellow Fashion Studies student Jessica Brown, 23, originally from Birmingham, used the latest in laser cutting techniques - where fabric patterns are cut out and edges sealed using a laser beam instead of scissors - to produce her intricate womenswear design inspired by the textures of nature.

Jessica added: "The top was made using a 'plush' technique to give a bush-like texture to it. That took about two days with a knitting machine.

"The bottom is made up of layered material in a leaf pattern cut using a laser cutting machine, which works very quickly."

Fiona Hawthorne, Senior Fashion Lecturer at the University of Derby, will be taking students down to London, who will help dress professional models in the designs for the catwalk show.

She said: "Alternative Fashion Week is a great opportunity for up and coming talent to show their work for free. It is different to London Fashion Week, where the costs of putting on a show are huge and you don't get to see fashion creatives from all over the country.

"University of Derby students have been working tirelessly on their independent collections for months. The outfits chosen for Alternative Fashion Week are just a snapshot of the creative concepts each student has researched and developed, using the latest fashion and textiles technologies.

"Working to a deadline adds extra pressure to an already rigorous final year for our students. The end result is always a great surprise, a real mix of creative talent collaborating for the show."

To see more examples of work by the University's Fashion Studies students go to

For more information please contact Press & PR Officer Sean Kirby on 01332 591891 or 07876 476103, or email

Original article and photographs sourced from: