Thursday, 28 November 2013

EXCLUSIVE| Fashion Scout Selection Panel for AW14

Yesterday, our Fashion Scout AW14 panel joined together at Beach Blanket Babylon to decide who will be showcasing with Fashion Scout during London and Paris Fashion Week as well as who will be our esteemed Merit Award and Ones to Watch winners this season. 

It was the general consensus of our judges that this is set to be the strongest season on Fashion Scout yet and we're onto a new 'wave' or 'era' of designers. There was a really stong mix of wearability and contemporary design, prompting's Jessica Bumpus to say: "There's a lot of fresh, new designers this season. There seems to be a new spirit of design here".

The Merit Award and Ones to Watch winners will be announced in mid-December exclusively on British Vogue whilst we will announce the individual showcasing designers here on the blog in the run-up to releasing our provisional schedule for our AW14 London showcase in January. 

By Editor Cass Gowing @CassGowing
Photography by Hannah McGee @HannahMcG3e

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

INTERVIEW| Selection Panel AW14 and British Vogue Fashion Features Editor Jessica Bumpus

British Vogue's Jessica Bumpus returns to the Fashion Scout Selection Panel for another season to give her invaluable opinion to decide who should be part of our London and Paris Fashion Week showcase for AW14. 

Jessica has been part of British Vogue's online team as Fashion Features Editor for five years, has assisted on our Selection Panel for multiple seasons, as well as been an integral part of Fashion Scout's mentoring programmes.

Looking to impress Jessica? For her, it's more instinctual, "you know when you've seen something good, be it a mix of being commercially viable, extremely creative or just very cool", Jessica said when we caught up with her today. "It always helps, though, to see it both in the flesh and in lookbook format. Something on the rail might not work until you see it being worn and vice versa." 

Lucky enough to be picked today to showcase with Fashion Scout during LFW AW14? Jessica advises, "Be prepared and be enthusiastic about it, this is the chance to sell your work and yourself quite literally!!"

Written and interviewed by Editor Cass Gowing @CassGowing

INTERVIEW| Selection Panel AW14 and Founding Member of YBD Debra Hepburn

This season, we are thrilled to be joined by Founding Member of Young British Designers, Debra Hepburn, on the Fashion Scout Selection Panel. Launched in 2010, Young British Designers (YBD) is an innovative online retail platform that hand-picks emerging British fashion design talent and has worked closely with Fashion Scout and our designers for many seasons. In fact, "our very first season saw us find Eudon Choi, Charlotte Taylor and Felicity Brown", Debra Hepburn - one of four founding partners of YBD -  explains. Before Debra joined us at the Selection Panel today, we asked her a few quick fire questions to find out what will make designers stand out for her. 

The Ones to Watch initiative and Merit Award are acclaimed within the industry for scouting exciting new talent- what criteria must those designers meet for you personally?
To look like a real force in the making, however raw, and to hold together as a collection that is true to a uniquely held design point of view. To know that this season or next we can showcase them on Young British Designers and set the world alight further with even more of our brilliant Brit talent.

What are three qualities do you look for in a future Fashion Scout designer?
Standout, the tangible embryo (at least) of a design signature and an intangible thrill.

Any words of wisdom for Fashion Scout Designers who are picked today to showcase at FS AW14?
Take a big deep breath, concentrate hard, believe in yourself and your vision, don’t be swayed and emerge triumphant the other side!

Written and interviewed by Editor Cass Gowing @CassGowing

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

INTERVIEW| Selection Panel AW14, GFW Trustee and Journalist Hilary Alexander

Fashion Scout's Selection Panel are fortunate enough to once again be joined by Hilary Alexander. A renowned and inspiring journalist whose acclaimed journalism career includes working as Fashion Director of The Telegraph for 26 years, Hilary's contribution to the fashion industry have been recognised in countless awards include receiving the British Fashion Journalist of the Year accolade (twice!) at the British Fashion Awards and an OBE for her services in fashion journalism. 

In addition to being a trustee member of Fashion Scout's sister company, Graduate Fashion Week, Hilary has been part of the Fashion Scout selection panel for many seasons. 

"I look for something I haven't seen before, plus workmanship/talent for pattern-cutting and understanding of fabric/colour", said Hilary when we caught up with her ahead of tomorrow's Selection Panel. 

As an experience journalist, what advice does Hilary give for successful Fashion Scout designers ahead of their AW14 catwalk showcase? "[Shows should be] well-edited, well-lit, with interesting music, no waiting for the show to start longer than 20 minutes and brief but explanatory programme notes (especially if using unusual fabric/techniques)."

Designers, why not look to Hilary's past favourite Fashion Scout shows ("David Koma, Eudon Choi and Phoebe English") for inspiration!

Follow Hilary Alexander on Twitter @HilaryAlexander
Written and interviewed by Editor Cass Gowing @CassGowing

INTERVIEW| Selection Panel AW14 and Former Merit Award Winner Georgia Hardinge

Ahead of tomorrow's Selection Panel for Fashion Scout AW14, we caught up with past Merit Award Winner and Selection Panel member Georgia Hardinge to get her top tips for this season's applicants. 

Georgia Hardinge's SS14 collection was part of the Ones To Watch initiative whilst her AW11 collection was awarded with the Merit Award accolade in January 2011, provided her with the first stand-alone catwalk show. Since showcasing with Fashion Scout, Georgia's career rocketed; from receiving rave reviews in top titles including Grazia, Marie Claire, Sunday Times Style, British Vogue, Tatler and ID, to gaining celebrity fans of the brand such as Florence Welch, Lady Gaga and Erin O’Conner, to collaborating with Victoria's Secret, Lancome and most recently, River Island. 

1. What are the three qualities you will be looking for when choosing a future Fashion Scout designer?
Originality, authenticity and consistency

2. What criteria do you have for the Ones to Watch and Merit Award potential winner? What OTW/Merit Award winners of previous seasons really impressed you?

The design must show unique wear-ability and attention to detail. I loved Eudon Choi collection he's a great designer and the David Koma's Merit Award collection was a great success.

3. What advice can you give to designers who will be showcasing at London or Paris Fashion Week for the first time?
Get a good team together who are prepared to work hard!
Great advice from an incredible designer who knows being a OTW and Merit Award winning Fashion Scout designer first hand! We can't wait to find out who our designers are for AW14!

Follow Georgia on Twitter @HardingeGeorgia to keep up to date with her at the Fashion Scout panel tomorrow! 
Written and interviewed by Editor Cass Gowing @CassGowing
Images from Christopher Dadey and Push It Magazine

Monday, 25 November 2013

ANNOUNCEMENT| Fashion Scout Selection Panel AW14

The Fashion Scout Selection Panel for AW14 will take place on Wednesday evening at Beach Blanket Babylon, Shoreditch. With nearly 200 international designer applying, our reputation as the leading platform for global design talent in the industry is growing from strength to strength!

Key industry experts will be joining us to choose the designers for Fashion Scout's AW14 showcase at London and Paris Fashion Week, which will be taking place on February 14-18 2013 and February 27-March 4. In addition, the panel will be making the tricky decision of who receives the coveted Merit Award and who will take place in our prestigious One's To Watch showcase.

We are thrilled to announce exclusively, the Selection Panel for Fashion Scout AW14: 

Martyn Roberts - Fashion Scout Director and Co-Founder
Jessica Bumpus - Fashion Features Editor at
Hilary Alexander - Graduate Fashion Week trustee and legendary journalist
Debra Hepburn - Founding Member of Young British Designers
Georgia Hardinge - Designer & former Fashion Scout Merit Award Winner
Rebekah Roy - Renowned stylist

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram for exclusive behind the scenes snaps of the Selection Panel event - the countdown to Fashion Scout AW14 has officially begun!

By Cass Gowing, Editor @CassGowing