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Students Steal the Show with Creative Catwalk Collections

Gemma McCorry (left) and Lucy McLaughlin model outfits by University of Ulster fashion students Krystyna Scullion and Ashlee Coburn to launch the University of Ulster Fashion Show which takes place on 1 June


It’s the catwalk extravaganza which acts as Northern Ireland’s shop window for students with a passion for fashion.

The University of Ulster Fashion Show, sponsored by Victoria Square, takes place on Wednesday June  1 – and a new generation of enterprising designers will unveil to the public the trends of the future.

From funky knits to fluid gowns and bold prints to sophisticated elegance, the catwalk innovations reflect the high quality workmanship and skills of top class textile and fashion design students at the University of Ulster.

They have successfully created a diverse and exciting range of garments for the 2011 event, with first year students working on the retrospective theme ‘Cinematic’ – sponsored by Avoca – which takes inspiration from the 1950s.

Second year students were given the concept ‘Third World, Second Hand, First Time Around’ and have produced innovative and individual designs developed into knits, prints and embroideries.

Alison Gault, Ulster’s Course Director, Textiles and Fashion Design, said: “I am delighted that after a year of hard work and dedication our students now have the opportunity to showcase their collections at the end of year show.

“The opportunity to use the available equipment and produce fabrics in knit, weave, laser cutting, prints and embroideries certainly ensures a unique and diverse edge to their design ideas.

“It gives students the opportunity to experience a broad range of processes and develop essential skills required to increase their employability within the current market.” 

Janet Coulter, Senior Lecturer in Textiles and Fashion, added: “It’s tremendous to see how students, working across hybrid disciplines, create their own fabrics to generate original outcomes and there are some very novel garments on display this year. 

“Through their work we can see how the course has facilitated students to combine technology and creativity with a strong commercial focus, which makes the textiles and fashion students at the University of Ulster, highly skilled designers and very sought after in the workplace.”

One of the students, Jayne Bristow from Dungannon, has created an Autumn/Winter collection entitled Ndebelle (na-belle) which was inspired by an eclectic mix of traditional and modern day Africa.

“With a vibrant colour palette and clever use of bold print expressing linguistic skills, this collection presents a sophisticated style representing sharp silhouettes,” she explained.

Krystyna Scullion from Rasharkin designed a Spring collection called Kid K, which was inspired by childhood memories.

“The mood of this collection is fun with a quirky edge, making it perfect for the expressive, fashion forward extrovert who’s not afraid to stand out from the crowd,” she explained.

Grainne Campbell from Newry was inspired by planes, trains and automobiles to create her Loco collection.

“Transportation is always on the move, seeking new features and ideas, just like fashion,” she commented.

The gala fashion event marks the launch of the Ulster Festival of Art and Design, sponsored by leading law firm, Carson McDowell, which runs from June 1 until June 12.

It will welcome top local and international commercial designers as well as leading artists to a number of events, ranging from fashion to photography and art to architecture.   

The Fashion Show will take place at 7pm on Wednesday June 1 at the University of Ulster’s Belfast campus at York Street.

Tickets, priced at £10, can be booked through www.ulsterfestival.com or by contacting the Belfast Visitor and Convention Bureau, 47 Donegall Place, Belfast BT1 5AD, phone: 028 90246609.