The British Fashion Council (BFC) has now opened applications for designers to participate in London Fashion Week September 2011. There are five categories which designers can apply for: On schedule applications, which includes catwalk, presentation, digital presentation and menswear; The Exhibition; Estethica; NEWGEN, sponsored by TOPSHOP and NEWGEN MEN, sponsored by TOPMAN.
London Fashion Week is one of the worldвЂ™s leading designer showcases alongside New York, Paris and Milan. With over 5,000 visitors, the audience is made up of UK and International press, buyers and industry professionals including key opinion formers. Last season London Fashion Week generated over ВЈ100 million worth of press coverage in the UK alone.
The Exhibition at LFW, based at Somerset House, showcases around 170 of the industryвЂ™s most creative UK and International designer businesses including both emerging and established accessories, jewellery and ready-to-wear labels. The BFC aims for The Exhibition to mirror the energy on the catwalk and presentation schedule.
Estethica is the BFCвЂ™s sustainable initiative sponsored by Monsoon. All potential Estethica designers must adhere to at least one of the three principles of fair-trade and ethical practices, organic and recycled materials and are selected for both their ethical credentials and design excellence. Estethica is the hub of LondonвЂ™s ethical fashion industry and recognised internationally as a leading showcase of ethical fashion.
The BFC NEWGEN scheme, currently sponsored by TOPSHOP was set up in 1993 with the mission of supporting the growth of original new collections which have the potential to make a mark on the international scene. Designers who have been in business for three years or less and are eligible to apply for the NEWGEN scheme and those selected will receive sponsorship and mentoring tailored to the scale and positioning of their products and businesses.
Judging is undertaken voluntarily by a panel of BritainвЂ™s top editors, buyers and talent scouts who compare entrants against the standards of excellence attained by former winners including some of BritainвЂ™s highest profile designers including Alexander McQueen, Matthew Williamson, Julien Macdonald and more recently Giles Deacon, Gareth Pugh, Christopher Kane, Marios Schwab, Richard Nicoll and Todd Lynn. Sarah Mower is the BFCвЂ™s Abassador for Emerging Talent and is the chair of this committee.
NEWGEN MEN, sponsored by TOPMAN, launched with success in September 2009. It provides menswear designers with business support, funding and the opportunity to use the official BFC venue, Somerset House, to host a catwalk show during London Fashion WeekвЂ™s Menswear Day. Menswear Day is now going into its fifth consecutive season and has become instrumental in raising the profile of both emerging and established British menswear designers. Last season saw over 20 menswear designers, the highest number to date, showcase to a targeted audience of key menswear press and buyers.
London Fashion Week will run from Friday 16th вЂ“ 21st September 2011 and is located at Somerset House, WC2.