Her innovative menswear designs, which included extreme puffer styles, impressed the panel of judges that this year included fashion designer Julien Macdonald, renowned fashion journalist Hilary Alexander, fashion blogger Susie Lau, and George vice president of product development and design, Fiona Lambert.
In addition to being crowned the best collection in show, which earns the menswear designer a 10,000 pound cash prize from sponsor George at Asda to help launch her fashion career, the Manchester School of Art designer collection was also named the most creative, as the 24-year-old also won the Creative Catwalk Collection Award.
Commenting on her double win, Wallace said: “I’m completely overwhelmed at winning these awards. It’s a dream come true and I am just so pleased that all of the hard work has paid off. You dream about seeing your collection on the catwalk and being able to show at Graduate Fashion Week, with this result, is an incredible experience.”
Wallace follows in the footsteps of other prestigious Gold Award winning alumni such as Stella McCartney, Julien MacDonald, Christopher Bailey, and last year’s winner Grace Weller from Bath Spa University.
Fiona Lambert, from title sponsor George at Asda, added: “Every year, Graduate Fashion Week astounds us. I have been incredibly impressed by the creativity, level of detail and the workmanship. We chose Hannah Wallace as the George Gold Award winner because her designs showcased such dexterity of craftsmanship, which gave incredible silhouettes. Her collection is unique and shows pattern cutting skills at their best.”
Manchester School of Art’s Hannah Wallace wins GFW Gold Award
There was also a triple win for Edinburgh College of Art’s Melissa Villevieille for her creative ‘Fauve, Moi?’ collection. The womenswear designer added the prestigious Womenswear Award and Catwalk Textiles Award to her earlier win of the David Band Textiles Award.
While Ella Nisbett Nottingham Trent University went on to pick up the Menswear Award and the Stuart Peters Visionary Knitwear Award.
Other winners at last night’s gala, which closed the annual four-day event at the Truman Brewery in East London, included Hannah Sykes from Manchester School of Art who won the Fashion Innovation Award for her collection that featured rain reactive fabrics, Chloe Draper from University of East London was presented with the Fashion Marketing Award, while the University of Salford’s Jodie Cox won the Fashion Photography Award.
There were additional wins for Ravensbourne’s Jasmine MacPhee who won the Fashion New Media honour, while the Fashion Styling and Creative Direction Award went to Izzy Whitley from the University of Salford, and Chou-Yun-Ting from Shih Chien University scooped the Samsonite International Catwalk Competition for her inspiring menswear designs.
Martyn Roberts, director of Graduate Fashion Week, commented: “Graduate Fashion Week celebrates the industry’s newest designers, giving them a platform to showcase their creativity, individuality and the opportunity to introduce their talents to industry heavyweights and fashion fans. The charity has helped thousands of graduates find employment over the past 24 years and we look forward to working with this new set of talented designers to shape the future of fashion.”
Images: George Gold Award Winner, Hannah Wallace from Manchester School of Art