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UKFT launches Made It to support graduate designers and UK manufacturers

Lauretta Roberts
09 November 2016

UKFT has launched Made It, a collaboration between the trade body, Graduate Fashion Week and Marks & Spencer designed to bring together graduate designers and UK manufacturers.

As part of the initiative, which was launched at a reception at the Houses of Parliament last night, Marks & Spencer and the UKFT will sponsor a number of Graduate Fashion Week winners to have their collections made in the UK.

In addition, to promote a better understanding of UK manufacturers and to encourage designers to use them as their preferred source of manufacturing, the UKFT, Marks & Spencer and Graduate Fashion Week will host a series of Masterclasses at five select universities across the country.

Hosted by Damian Collins MP, UKFT and Graduate Fashion Week, the reception included a catwalk show and was attended by key policy makers, industry influencers, major retailers, leading brands and UK manufacturers, with special guests including Graduate Fashion Week ambassadors Alesha Dixon, Mandi Lennard and Caryn Franklin as well as designer Zandra Rhodes and fashion critic Suzy Menkes.

"The UK has some of the best designer graduates in the world and some of the most talented manufacturers - Made It brings them together. Not only will we see the creation of some stunning collections, the project will also help to ensure the success of the next generation in understanding the business of fashion, which is a fundamental part of UKFT’s purpose and key whether you are developing a new brand, working with manufacturers or growing business overseas," said UKFT chairman Nigel Lugg.

Graduate Fashion Week managing director Martyn Roberts said the initiative was "a wonderful opportunity" for GFW students to get first hand knowledge and experience of working with British manufacturers. "These are vital skills for fashion design graduates and essential for keeping Britain at the forefront of design," he said.

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