- Danielle Wightman-Stone |
The British Fashion Council has announced its emerging designer platform NewGen will now be awarded annually instead of seasonally and will combine menswear and womenswear designers under one single initiative.
The move it says is to “strengthen and streamline the support offered to designers” and to relieve pressure from current and prospective designer recipients and to allow the initiative to further tailor the support offered to each individual designer or brand.
In addition, the British Fashion Council stated that the platform’s primary focus will be on business growth, to offer the brands and designers involved a “strong foundation of business skills”.
British Fashion Council chief executive Caroline Rush, explains: “Our NewGen initiatives have supported so many incredible designers since their inception, and have been a strong foundation for so many brands. Moving forward, in recognition of the changing nature of fashion business models and the varying approaches brands now take to showcasing, the combined Newgen format will focus on building a strong foundation of business skills.
“This will allow us to nurture and support designers as part of a tailored and flexible initiative, which will allow them to build and showcase their brands in close alignment with their creative vision.”
BFC announces new format for NewGen and names 2017 designers
Designers will continue to receive support for a catwalk show or a presentation at either London Fashion Week or London Fashion Week Men’s each season, as well as a comprehensive mentoring scheme. In addition, each NewGen recipient will also be allocated a dedicated pop-up showroom slot within the Designer Showrooms at The Store Studios. Each designer will take residence after their show or presentation to maximise sales potential.
The designer’s receiving NewGen support for January and February 2017 are: menswear designers Alex Mullins, Cottweiler, Craig Green, Kiko Kostadinov, Liam Hodges, Phoebe English Man and Wales Bonner.
While womenswear will feature Ashley Williams, Faustine Steinmetz, Marta Jakubowski, Molly Goddard, Paula Knorr and Sadie Williams.
Designers Bobby Abley, Diego Vanassibara, and Ryan Lo have all graduated from the initiative this year, said the British Fashion Council.
This year for the first time the platform will be funded by the BFC Education Foundation, which raised 700,000 pounds at last year’s The Fashion Awards in partnership with Swarovski. 400,000 pounds of the funds will be used to support schemes including NewGen, Business Support and the BFC Colleges Council.
The initiative calendar will run from June to February, and applications for next year will open later in 2017.
Images: Ashley Williams, Molly Goddard and Paula Knorr SS17, courtesy of the British Fashion Council