The crème de la crème of the fashion industry have joined MPs at the Houses of Parliament for a special catwalk show which featured work by University for the Creative Arts (UCA) graduate Qiwei Jiang.
Having recently won the Marks & Spencer Best Womenswear Award at this year’s Graduate Fashion Week (GFW), Qiwei, who studied BA (Hons) Fashion at UCA Epsom, was invited to show her designs at the event, held to mark the launch of next year’s programme.
Qiwei’s collection, ‘trompe l’oeil’ which translates to ‘deceive the eye’, wowed the judges earlier this year. “I think the collection is innovative and creative, and some new ideas have come out of it. But it still keeps in touch with the emotional side,” Qiwei said when asked what she thought made her designs stand out to the judges. “My favourite piece in the collection is the print knitwear and skirt with handbag outfit.”
Inspired by the work of architect M.C. Escher, Qiwei adds: “I am interested in his mix of realism and impossibility. Escher was an architect and his precision of measurement, perspective and his use of pattern shows great calculation. His drawing is skilled. As some of M.C. Escher’s work was done in 1920s America, I researched the 1920s, particularly women’s fashion in Europe and America.”
Graduate Fashion Week is the premier event in the university fashion calendar – it has helped launch the careers of such household names as Stella McCartney, Julien Macdonald and Burberry boss Christopher Bailey.
The Houses of Parliament event rounds off a successful year for Qiwei, who is originally from China. In addition to the Marks & Spencer Best Womenswear Award, Qiwei also collected the runner-up prize in the David Band Textiles Award.