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Halina North

Halina North

By: Kara Joyce

Cardboard coats x couture detail scooped Halina North of Edinburgh College of Art the top prize at Graduate Fashion Week 2017.

Designer Halina North and her womenswear collection created out of recycled papers and plastics snagged Graduate Fashion Week’s top prize, the Christopher Bailey Gold Award. She also nabbed the Hilary Alexander OBE Trailblazer award, in its inaugural year. Her models appeared to wear paper bags, albeit paper bags that had been couture-tailored in a style that nodded to the New Look of Christian Dior. The brown base of most of her creations allowed the bright red accents to catch the bright lights, and the occasional red and white checked design brought a playfulness to a serious and assured collection. Employing repurposed materials to create high fashion put sustainability at the heart of her collection, perhaps the dominant theme of the entire Week. Indeed, two of the event’s sponsors were The Sustainable Angle and The Ethical Fashion Forum. While it seems strange that both the Gold award and the Trailblazer award for innovation and creativity should go to the same Edinburgh College of Arts graduate, the School had a great Fashion Week and Halina’s designs did not sacrifice form or beauty in order to be sustainable. Abigail Coop from Nottingham Trent University also deserves recognition for her floaty feathery collection in navy and cream. She was named the runner-up for the Gold award.