The Great Yorkshire Show gives the county’s creative students a chance to demonstrate their talents. Stephanie Smith discovers some stunning designs. Pictures by Doug Jackson.
At York College, first year students studying the Extended Diploma in Fashion & Clothing, all aged 16-17, created pieces from donated men’s suiting as part of their British Heritage project, the brainchild of John Warburton, who spent 45 years in the fashion and textile industry and is now a volunteer at St Leonard’s Hospice’s Selby branch, as well as chief steward for the Great Yorkshire Fashion Shows.
“The garments started out as men’s suits which had been donated to regional St Leonard’s Hospice retail shops,” said fashion tutor Tara Berridge. “As part of the students’ final major project, the suits have been upcycled into ladies’ dresses, fit for the catwalk.”
The innovative and imaginative designs reflect a range of skills learnt on the course such as research, moulage modelling on mannequins, pattern cutting and garment manufacturing. Ms Berridge said: “This live project provided students with a fantastic opportunity to work in the wider community, on a live brief, for a real client, as would be the case in industry.”
After the show, some of the garments will be auctioned to raise money for the hospice, whilst others will feature in student portfolios.
There was also a heritage twist seen in the designs from Bradford School of Art, where second year fashion degree students created beautiful yoked and frilled blouses in vintage floral and geometric prints, teamed with neat tailored button-through A-line skirts and Frieda Kahlo-style flower headdresses – a look that worked very well in the farmyard shoot setting.
Bradford School of Art is a traditional art school with a strong reputation and a long history of creative education, has world-class facilities, in particular for printmaking, ceramics, textile weave, digital print and studio space.
Meanwhile, over at Bradford College, students of the Service Industries Hairdressing and Beauty Therapy department worked closely with Huddersfield-based model and catwalk team Morton Gledhill producing the hair and make-up for the shoot, and will do so again for the Great Yorkshire Show runway. “This is such an enjoyable event, allowing aspiring hair session stylists and make-up artists to gain valuable experience working with professional models and stylists,” said Janice Richardson, programme area lead at Bradford College.
Students from the University of Huddersfield will also showcase their work at Harrogate, as part of a partnership with disinfectant brand Zoflora, creating costumes inspired by Zoflora’s garden at the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show in July. The top five designs will be modelled on the runway at the Great Yorkshire Show where the overall winner will be announced.
Some of the youngest designers showing their collections here and at the Great Yorkshire Show are from Northallerton School and Sixth Form College, all AS and A2 students in the Design and Technology Textiles Department. With prints and designs inspired by Dolce & Gabbana and Vivienne Westwood, their work is assured and surprising – a well-deserved place on this important platform for Yorkshire’s creative design talent.
The Great Yorkshire Show takes place next week, July 12-14. The fashion shows run four times a day at the Skipton Building Society Fashion Pavilion.
Photography: Doug Jackson Photography; Models and Fashion Show Co-ordination: Morton Gledhill, The Fashion Team; Hair and Make-up: Bradford College.