"While I was on the course and after I graduated, I felt as though there was something missing to help bridge the gap between students, graduates and the fashion industry," explained Wilkinson to FashionUnited. "I wanted to create something which helped students and graduates who were trying to break into the industry, which could empower, inspire and inform them - so in addition to providing careers advice, industry news and interviews, the magazine will also cover issue which affect the industry such as sustainable fashion, the relationship between body image and fashion photography and the laws and rights regarding unpaid internships, for example."
Wilkinson has launched the Fashion Grads website, and depending on how well the crowdfunding campaign goes, the first issue of the Fashion Grads magazine will launch sometime this April. "I decided to run a crowdfunding campaign because I want people to feel a part of the magazines. I want people to connect to it and resonate with it. I am creating this magazine to help support other people, who are in the position I was in a few years ago - and I very much see it is as their magazine, so it felt right to let them take ownership of it and get involved - even before it has been officially launched," she added.
The first issue of the magazine will focus on sustainable fashion and will cover ethical brands as well as casting a spotlight on Fashion Revolution Day, which occurs annually on April 24, in remembrance of those who lost their lives in the Rana Plaza factory accident in 2013. Wilkinson aims to not only share knowledge with fashion students and graduates by exploring key areas within the industry, but she also aims to open their eyes to all aspects of the industry: "I want to help the future industry leads to make informed choices and decisions, which will hopefully take away some of the negative perceptions which are out there."
Since the launch of the crowdfunding campaign, Wilkinson says she has been overwhelmed by the responses she has received. "The support I've received while developing the magazine has been incredible, there are so many helpful and well connected people within the industry, it is just about knowing where to look. The support from the fashion blogging community has also been overwhelming. The best advice I could give about making contacts is to keep in touch with people who you go to college or university with, even if it's just on LinkedIn, it is crazy where people end up a few years after graduation - or if you can find people who have previously attend your university and studied your course then introduce yourself and speak to them. "