Following a successful catwalk show at Graduate Fashion Week, 21 year old Bethany Hilton managed to retain some attention as her recent collection brought further opportunities to light.
The organisers of ‘Fashion Designers and Craft-makers Young Designer Awards’ (FDCYDA) invited Bethany to take part in their event after discovering her on Instagram.
Renowned for increasing visibility for exceptionally talented young designers, FDCYDA has previously taken place in New York, Atlanta, London and now at the Cube in Birmingham.
Please can you tell us about the FDCYDA young designer awards and what is means to you?
Organised by volunteers, the recent fashion show raised funds for Angelman syndrome.
There were a lot of bloggers and photographers at the event so it was exciting to network as well as showcase my collection- It was great to take part.
Tell us about your project and the process you went through on the run up to the event?
On the run up to the event, I did model casting and fittings to ensure the girls looked great and felt comfortable wearing my clothes.
My collection is derived from the German term, meaning and longing to travel to a place where you feel at home. My debut collection ‘Heimweh’ looks at traditional nomadic qualities in a contrast to a modern society.
I explored the idea of clipping elements on to the body- merging garments with accessories to develop interchangeable looks. The idea being a pocket on the bag or belt may be exchanged with a pocket from the jacket creating the option to alter the desired look.
Can you describe how you felt when your name was announced as the winner?
I felt so honoured that all my hard work had paid off! It was amazing to be R E C O G N I S E D.
How has Birmingham City University supported your journey?
I gained a lot of support from the academics, my tutors encouraged my ideas and gave me the confidence to try new techniques and styles. The technical tutors from pattern cutting and sewing were very helpful as they taught me new elements that were useful to my designs.
Course lecturer Michelle Wetherell had some positive words share about Bethany:
‘We are so proud of Beth, she has been a truly dedicated student and a pleasure to teach. What an amazing end to a fantastic year, firstly showing her collection at Birmingham museum, then Graduate Fashion Week and finally winning the FDC Young Designer Awards. Congratulations to Beth, such a worthy winner.’
What are your next steps and future aspirations?
I will be taking part in another show in October. I aim to continue showcasing my current collection and I would love to be recognised as a new designer whilst developing on a new range.
If the opportunity arose, I would like to get a studio space set up so I can continue hand crafting elements of my work. Currently, I am looking for a design assistant role to gain more experience and save for funding my next collection.
What advice do you have for someone thinking about studying fashion at BCU?
It is a great course with loads of opportunities. You have to be prepared to give it your absolute all, I did and I’m pleased with my outcomes.
What is your overall course highlight?
Graduate Fashion Week- It was an I N C R E D I B L E end to my course.