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From nostalgic knitwear to playful silhouettes – Kingston School of Art fashion students showcase latest catwalk creations at end of year show

Posted Wednesday 5 June 2024

From nostalgic knitwear to playful silhouettes – Kingston School of Art fashion students showcase latest catwalk creations at end of year show Miranda Mallinson-Pocock is one of the students sharing their collection on the Kingston School of Art catwalk.

Up and coming fashion designers from Kingston School of Art lit up the catwalk with an array of innovative and ambitious collections in a prestigious show marking the culmination of their undergraduate studies.

Twenty two designers each revealed six looks before an audience of industry leaders and media influencers at their end of year show on 8 June. Featuring a mix of menswear, streetwear, knit, womenswear and haute couture, the runway show is a longstanding highlight of the annual graduate fashion calendar.

Among the young designers was 24-year-old Miranda Mallinson-Pocock, from Twickenham, whose garments focus on homecoming, emphasising the comfort and nostalgia found in returning to familiar surroundings. The pieces featured were created by unravelling knitwear and overdying faded fabrics to extend their lives beyond their original purpose, inspired by her parent's attitude to mending and repurposing when she was growing up.

Miranda's menswear collection uses old bedsheets and fabrics from her family home, which are  filled with memories of her childhood.Miranda's menswear collection uses old bedsheets and fabrics from her family home, which are filled with memories of her childhood.

Miranda's menswear collection uses old bedsheets and fabrics from her family home, filled with mementoes of her childhood, alongside items donated by family and friends, and garments found at boot fairs and on eBay. The quality of the work has already seen her recognised as a finalist of the Redress Design Award 2024, widely regarded as the leading sustainable fashion design competition in the globe, with the winners due to be announced in Hong Kong later this year.

"My looks are a reminder of the human craft and labour that goes into our textiles, as well as the memories contained within them," she said. "They are designed for real life use and longevity. The aim is to use fabric and knits to produce an item of higher value. For the knits I used moth-eaten jumpers or garments with other imperfections, ensuring they were made from the same fibre and could be re-used once they reached the end of their lives."

Fellow student Rio Aso also found inspiration from her childhood to inform her menswear collection's playful designs. Rooted in the sense of security provided through relationships between a child and caregiver, her looks embody feelings of safety and reassurance.

The initial visual narrative builds on her own secure base, particularly moments spent with her mother reading picture books in bed. "I was enchanted by the whimsical aesthetic of Japanese picture books, such as cut-out pictures by Jiro Takidaira and silhouette pictures by Seiji Fujishiro," the 24 year old from Aomori in Northern Japan said. "The solid black colours, wonky lines and shapes found in those pictures are reflected in my textile designs."

Rio Aso also found inspiration from her childhood to inform her menswear collection's playful designs. Rio Aso also found inspiration from her childhood to inform her menswear collection's playful designs.

The garments are based on children's ill-fitted shapes and proportions, using elongated torsos, more central armholes and with emphasis placed on the twisted spaces found between a developing body and fabric. "Through 3D experimentation, I transformed child-like silhouettes into contemporary menswear that proposes new garment structures and body proportions," she explained. "The silhouettes aim to make the wearers' bodies transport back to their childhood, serving as a wearable homage to the enduring comfort of a secure base, creating new and innovative garments that people feel comfortable to wear in everyday settings."

Course leader of BA (Hons) Fashion David Frizzell said the catwalk show, sponsored by ME+EM and The White Company, demonstrated the high quality of work, commitment and innovation of the graduating students. "At Kingston School of Art, we are world-renowned for producing designers who are fully prepared to embark on a career at the cutting edge of the fashion industry," he said. "This year is no exception. The range of themes in this year's catwalk show demonstrates the active concerns of the new generation of designers, and reflects the in-depth research and inspiration they collect from the world around them. The fashion outcome competes at the highest graduate level"

This year's show also marks the first collaboration between the Departments of Fashion and Music at Kingston University. Music students have created a bespoke soundtrack for the eagerly anticipated event, which took place at Shoreditch Town Hall.

Categories: On campus, Students

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