Sunday, January 18, 2009

NAFA Open House 09

We visited NAFA on saturday to take a look at the student works and the campus (even though we were going to junior college). There were many other young sec 4 students too. It was really an eye-opening experience and I particularly enjoyed the works which won the Crowbar awards done by the Design and Media students, and touring the fashion campus.

I really loved Ridhwan's illustrations on anorexia (first came upon his work at here through vogueite's blog). They were really stylish and fun. The fashion campus on bencoolen street was not very big, but it had really high-tech equipment used in the industry other than just sewing machines, such as those that create buttonholes, smocking and so on. There were student works like mood boards and sketches, and photos of graduating collections on display that were rather impressive. We also attended two talks on the fashion industry.

The one titled Insights into Fashion Business was by lecturer Stephanie Besserer, who is a swedish visual merchandiser and fashion designer, who worked for H&M (wow) before, and studied at ESMOD tokyo. She designed many window displays and described her job as something challenging yet interesting, as fast paced fashion retailers will need to change displays often and she has to follow with the flow. She is now starting a label in dancewear.

The second was by designer Bernie Xu, who gave us a talk on Starting a Fashion Label. He talked about the research and design process, followed by a Q&A. It became more interesting when he talked about an interview he had with the board of Central St Martins when he studied fashion in NAFA. They rejected him and encourage him to join London College of Fashion instead. He was really frustrated and when he asked them why he was not accepted, they told him that he has no tattoos, does not drink/smoke etc. which was prevalent in their school. Now he's really thankful that he did not enter CSM too as the school's culture may not be suitable for everyone.

The trip to NAFA was really enjoyable as we got a free goodie bag! And we learned much about fashion education and this competitive business. Will definitely look out for more similar opportunities in the future.

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