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M&S launches collection designed by UCA alumna

High Street giant Marks & Spencer has launched a womenswear range designed by our Fashion Textiles: Print graduate, Claire Tagg.

Just five months since graduating from UCA Rochester, Claire has seen her designs – a collection of oriental-themed evening wear pieces – go into production with the retailer and be sold on the shop floor.

Claire says: “Marks and Spencer asked me to design a collection which was glamorous and high fashion yet wearable for the Marks & Spencer’s customer. I had to bear in mind that women of all ages and sizes would want to wear this collection and so I learnt a lot about how to make my designs commercial.”

The graduate first came to the attention of the major retailer at Graduate Fashion Week when she was selected for the Gala show and named runner up for the M&S Womenswear award.

“Straight after the event Marks and Spencer rang me to offer me a three-month graduate placement,” Claire adds. “To design the collection I had to create a concept on which it would be based, and I chose oriental glamour. I presented this to the heads of design at Marks and Spencer and from this I was introduced to the important people that I was to work with, which included the fabric sources, the print team, the colour specialists and pattern cutters. I worked alongside all of these people to create the designs and their guidance and excellent knowledge of the industry helped me to put together the collection.”

Earlier this year, Claire’s graduate collection – inspired by her former career as an air hostess – caused a real splash, with one of her designs being worn by British singer Hatty Keane on the red carpet of the world premiere of Transformers: The Last Knight.

To view Claire’s M&S collection, click here.

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