LONDON — Nine London fashion labels have secured support from the British Fashion Council’s Fashion Trust scheme, which doles out grants totaling 300,000 pounds, or $460,000, and mentoring from business experts.
The nine labels are David Koma, Emilia Wickstead, Holly Fulton, Marios Schwab, Mother of Pearl, Palmer Harding, Prism, Sibling and Sophia Webster.
“The fashion labels have shown exciting growth and, both individually and collectively, their businesses reinforce the U.K.’s reputation for creative strength,” said Caroline Rush, chief executive officer of the BFC.
On Thursday, the BFC also revealed the formalization of the Graduate Traineeship Program, which has been in pilot over the last year and is funded by donations from the Fashion Trust members.
The program offers B.A. and M.A. design graduates the opportunity to apply for a 12-month paid placement with a London Fashion Week designer. The program ensures that graduates are able to develop skills and are exposed to different elements of a design team.
The program is split into three stages, ensuring progression within the role and business. In the first year, two students from the Royal College of Art were placed at the Roksanda and Erdem businesses.
Tania Fares and Kim Hersov, co-chairs of the BFC Fashion Trust, said, “We need to support the industry at its grassroots. The Fashion Trust will continue to support talented designer labels so that the U.K. can continue to build the brands of the future.”
The Fashion Trust was founded in February 2011 as a philanthropic program offering selected designers business support through mentoring and financial awards.
Previous years’ recipients include Christopher Kane, Jonathan Saunders, House of Holland, Marios Schwab, Mary Katrantzou, Nicholas Kirkwood, Osman, Peter Pilotto, Richard Nicoll and Roksanda Ilincic. Funds are raised through membership fees and there are now more than 66 members.
The Founder Member Committee includes Felicia Brocklebank, Leon Max, Megha Mittal, Natalie Livingstone, Nicoletta Fiorucci, Tania Fares, and Terry de Gunzburg.