Central St Martins graduate Cassandra wowed the panel with her yet-to-be-launched graduate collection of dresses in candy-coloured bombs of fluff, intricately beaded separates and goldfish-bowl handbags. “My tutor mentioned that I should enter and I love Grazia and Liberty – so everything about it made sense really!” she told us. Meanwhile Karen Mabon’s personality-filled printed silk scarves put her ahead of the competition. “It was so useful to meet the experts – the buyers and judges. And it was nice to not be alone in my studio, because when I’m in there I can go for days without talking to anyone!” she told us.
And Liberty were so impressed with both entrants that Cassandra will have her graduate collection displayed in a Liberty window around London Fashion Week, and Karen, whose scarves are already in production, will see her pieces stocked at Liberty in the autumn.
More than 80 budding designers entered FashFactor back in June, with five shortlisted candidates asked back for a more intensive judging session the following week in front of our esteemed judging line up – designers Roland Mouret and Peter Jensen, Liberty's Managing Director Ed Burstell and Head of Fashion Buying & Merchandising Stephen Ayres, Grazia’s Editor-In-Chief Jane Bruton and Fashion Director Susannah Frankel.
CSMBA graduate Cassandra was inspired by her grandma’s beauty pageantry to create this labour intensive love of super-shaggy pastel coloured pieces, inventive beading (made from drinking straws no less) and kooky goldfish bowl handbags.
Karen originally studied jewellery design but turned her hand to creating charming prints for silks scarves. Our favourite was the Stock Market – up close you’ll see city-slicker types in cartoon form, from far away it’s a pretty colour riot.
AND THE RUNNERS UP
The University of Northampton student was inspired by a trip to a scrapyard to create her hand-printed ultra-bright outfits.
Fine jeweller but not as you know it – Judy used Perspex to create her intricate creations.
Inspired by her fine art background Sarah’s Perspex and felt handbags are inspired by sculpture and using innovative materials.