Menswear triumph at FAD


Sing Yu Chan & Tian Yuan (London College of Fashion)

FAD (Fashion Awareness Direct) is a charity which aims to provide young people (from 13 – 25) with a realistic insight into what it means to work in fashion. Workshops, industry days and work placement opportunities, allow the young people to learn the important practical skills needed to succeed in what can be a difficult industry to get into.

Brining together industry professionals and young people in schools/sixth form colleges and universities, the FAD projects not only encourage creativity and an intelligent approach to design, they also help to develop students confidence, which is key to encouraging students who may not have previously considered fashion as a career.

I have worked with FAD for some time now and feel passionate that the fashion industry should be more inclusive. After all, some of the best and most successful Uk designers have come from diverse backgrounds and organisations like FAD not only actively encourage everyone to follow their dream, they also give them the tools to do it.

The FAD competition is open to all BA design students in the UK  and this year I was one of the judges. The standard of the work was excellent and the students had worked very hard (on top of their uni work – the project is entirely voluntary) both on their design concepts and finished garments.


Lucia Graham (De Monfort University) and Amy Konig (Winchester School of Art)

The overall winner Rhiannon Wakefield became the first menswear finalist to win the FAD Competition since it was established in 2001. With her intelligent approach she beat fifteen other talented students from universities nationwide with her winning collection, which translated Debussy’s emotive prelude La Cathédrale Engloutie through original prints and masculine silhouettes.

FAD winner

Rhiannon Wakefield (Middlesex university)

FAD 6Two secondary prizes also went to menswear finalists, with a collaborative win for Fashion and Textiles students Nobuyuki Matsui & Moe Takahashi from the London College of Fashion and Benjamin Callery of Bath Spa University, for his highly wearable, fisherman inspired menswear.


Sing Yu Chan and Yuan Tian (London College of Fashion)


Benjamin Callery (Bath Spa University)

With funding being cut for projects like FAD (the conservative government don’t take fashion or creative subjects seriously in schools) it’s important to support them, either through giving back as a volunteer, or offering work placements or sponsorship. If you are in fashion and think you can help, please do get in touch with FAD.


  • Monix says:

    That blue “stained glass” coat is stunning! A lot of these designs look considerably more commercial (ie wearable) than what we saw in NYFW. – well done to these young talents (though I have to add it’s not just a Conservative (coalition) government that doesn’t take fashion or creative subjects seriously, no government does).

  • Carole Robb says:

    Hi Jane
    Didn’t realise you were involved in FAD
    I applied to be a volunteer through Guardian Jobs in January and no- one got back to me. Do you have someone I can contact directly,

  • Jane says:

    Carol, Contact Maria, she would love to have you involved, I’m sure.
    [email protected]


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