TWO fashion design students from Huddersfield University made a bid for glory.

They were among 12 finalists in the prestigious Fashion Awareness Direct Competition.

Sophie Brownson, 20, and Charmaine Bould, 19, heard about the competition through their tutor and travelled to a lecture held in London by FAD to receive the brief.

The audience at the final was very impressed by the creativity and quality of work by all the finalists.

The FAD Competition is directed at young designers studying fashion across the UK as a way of supporting and spotlighting new designers. It also helps fashion students to bridge the gap between education and industry.

“It’s really important to support competitions and events such as the FAD Competition,” said Luisa de Paula, merchandising and buying director for and one of the judges at the competition.

“The fashion industry is incredibly competitive and students need the experience and feedback gained from the process of research, the making of the garments and presentation of their ideas.Š

“The brief was very challenging and tested a wide range of technical and creative points. The resulting collections were of a very high standard.”

The students had to draw influences from the architectural blueprint of the Chinese pagoda in Kew Gardens by laying the blueprint on to the fabrics and to correlate with conventional clothing patterns to create a hybrid garment.

They then had to produce a second piece by transforming the first.

“The competition was a good opportunity for people to recognise my work before I graduate and will also be a good experience for my CV,” said Sophie, who is from Coventry.

“One day I hope to open an independentŠboutique of my own, though I understand the need to gain some industry experience to pick up confidence and contacts.

“I completed a sketchbook of research based on Chinese culture, including pagodas and three important symbolic plants, peony, mulberry and bamboo.

“The first design was based on Chinese pagodas and calligraphy, so I designed a dress using that basic structure.

“The second outfit was to include three layers to go on top.”