City and Islington College student Sindy Nguyen has won the Fashion Awareness Direct (FAD) award for Innovation sponsored by Natwest and George at Asda at the 2016 Fashion Futures Final.
Sindy was one of the 21 teenage finalists who were the youngest designers to showcase at London Fashion Week and were shortlisted from over 100 teenagers who took part in FAD workshops earlier this year. They presented garments inspired by the artistic heritage of the Indian Subcontinent, fused with London street-style.
Inspired by the way in which teenage boys in her area style their kameez with Nike Air Max and sports jackets, Sindy’s unique interpretation of the brief led to a garment that combined tailoring with creative draping. The judges highly praised the originality and clean construction and also awarded her with a design placement at George at Asda.
“I’m still shaking from the experience! Seeing my garment walk down the catwalk was the most exciting and emotional experience ever!”
“I’m still shaking from the experience! Seeing my garment walk down the catwalk was the most exciting and emotional experience ever!” said Sindy after the show, still in shock.
“The winner of the Innovation Award is amazing. It’s not the sort of thing I’d normally like as a traditional sewer, but it shows such flair and ingenuity. The use of the fabrics, the techniques and the distressing make it a really, really interesting garment. The sketchbook was also very impressive, with beautiful drawings and use of colour,”– May Martin, textiles tutor and former presenter of the BBC’s Great British Sewing Bee
The show was followed by an exhibition of the finalist’s work at Startisans. Many past FAD teens attended on the night along with industry supporters from George at Asda, All Saints. Karen Millen and Next.
To be selected for the Fashion Futures Final, the teenagers undertook ten weeks of practical workshops with FAD before presenting their finished toiles and portfolios to a panel of industry experts. The selected finalists, chosen from over 100 entrants, then spent five days with FAD mentors at The University of East London creating their garments for the London catwalk.
Now in its fifteenth year, the Fashion Futures project sponsored by George at Asda and Natwest provides hands-on training and industry experience to 16-19 year olds, targeting disadvantaged young people with free places and mentoring support.
“These opportunities are life changing. People that adopt and grow with sewing skills gain confidence within themselves, meet likeminded people and extend their knowledge. This is a really stimulating and challenging environment to be in, but Fashion Futures builds people’s confidence,” – May Martin, textiles tutor and former presenter of the BBC’s Great British Sewing Bee