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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Ravensbourne: Graduate Fashion Week 2013 Catwalk Review

Burger bags, bondage, the Venga Boys and so much more - Ravensbourne delivered a 40-minute-long treat at Graduate Fashion Week on Monday 3 June…

Written by Matt Bramford


Illustration by Francesca Valorsa

As Northumbria University alumni, I haven’t missed one of their Graduate Fashion Week shows in the last eight years. Sadly, I broke this record this time around due to a rather tedious, but completely incapacitating 30th birthday hangover.

On top of this, I’ve had a holiday on the brink of collapse and a molar having a disco in my mouth. My chances of having any fun at GFW this year, thus, were minimal, but I couldn’t resist hot-footing along to Ravensbourne‘s outing on Monday. I had to get my fix of the latest fashion talent somewhere.

The A/W 2013 womenswear shows feel like only days ago and London Collections: Men kicks off in a couple of weeks. I always forget that it’s bloody hard work with the graduates: Ravensbourne presented no less than 25 collections, covering womenswear, menswear and textiles; all capable of catwalk conquering away from Earl’s Court. What I’m trying to say is that it’s like viewing 25 on-schedule shows at once – pretty exhausting.

Do you care? Probably not, so here’s a fruity rundown of some of my favourite graduates:


Graduate illustration by Phiney Pet

Josephine Pettman, aka Phiney Pet, opened the show with a stunning display of vibrant, illustrated textiles, sporty cuts and badge-emblazoned jackets.

Sofie Malmgren swiftly followed with a collection that couldn’t have been more different: a futuristic set of white, linear pieces with contrasting panels in varying materials and rectangular transparent clutch bags:

Tabitha Williamson‘s ethereal collection followed. Floor-sweeping numbers with balaclava hoods and masses of thick fabrics enveloped her models:


Illustration by Jack Bebbington

Menswear was abundant, with as much emphasis on radical fashion as well as commercial viability. William Baxter was the first to bring menswear to this show, presenting a selection of sharply tailored suits with an enlarged herringbone pattern, styled with a Great Gatsby influence:

Jane Swansbury‘s men were covered in tropical prints, featuring gorilla faces, hibiscus leaves and fruit and vegetables:


Illustration by Jane Swansbury

Sarah Frances Ratcliffe‘s expedition aesthetic proved popular, particularly metallic overcoats with hoods:

Jack Bebbington‘s oversized faux fur jackets and shorts also favoured the A/W season – I liked this a lot:


Illustration by Leanne Warren

Leanne Warren‘s capes featured intricate illustrations in vibrant colours:


Illustration by Chen-Yu Wang

…whilst Chen-Yu Wang drew inspiration from childhood, with this playful collection mastering oversized silhouettes. Knitted eyeballs and doll-like frayed hems featured:

Clio Peppiatt‘s collection was one of my favourites. Plastics, acid prints, chavvy styling, ridiculous blingy heels, burger handbags on chains and graffiti-esque burger patterns – what’s not to love?

In stark contrast, Madeleine Ayers‘ sleek collection drew comparisons to Japanese couturiers, with straight lines, unfinished hems and a monochrome colour palette:


Illustration by Anne Lina Dingsor Uudelepp

Anne Lina Dingsor Uudelepp‘s street fashion featured lots of striking prints and textures, styled with gold hoops and ghetto-gold jewellery:

Francesca Valorsa‘s ethereal veils, decorated with obscure faces, created drama and complimented her collection of intricate, haphazard fabrics:


Illustration by Charlotte Harris

…but it was to Charlotte Harris to close the show, whose collection of chunky knitwear, vibrant colours and metallic jackets brought whoops and cheers.

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