Art and design students team up with top sustainable fashion designers Vin + Omi

Oxford Brookes University students gained real life fashion industry experience by creating and building a set for two top British designers as part of London Fashion Week 2024.

Students on the Art and Design Foundation course worked with leading designer duo Vin + Omi to create a set for their latest fashion show at The Other House in Kensington on 2 April. 

Vin + Omi are known for their passion for sustainability, and have recently partnered with King Charles III to create a fashion exhibition using plant waste from the gardens of the Sandringham House estate.

For the project with Oxford Brookes, Vin + Omi wrote a brief for the students who then had two weeks to design and create the set before the show. The project was part of the students’ studies and counts towards their assessed work.

Students also worked on clothing designs for the show, decorating shoes and bags as well as creating headdresses, all made from recycled materials. The students also assisted the backstage team.

The partnership between Oxford Brookes and Vin + Omi started in 2018. Since then, students have worked with the designers twice a year, gaining valuable hands-on experience of sustainable design practices. 

Amy Harris, Senior Lecturer in Art & Design at Oxford Brookes, helped the students with the project and attended the show.

Amy said: “This project is an excellent opportunity for students to get an insight into working in the fashion industry. Professional working practices are really important, students work to really strict and time-pressured deadlines. Punctuality, attendance, dedication and commitment is essential, but also the quality of the work produced. When working in London, students are working alongside the wider Vin + Omi team, collaboration is really important.

“The show was a great success. This year the time pressure on the day was particularly tight. All students worked continuously for the whole day. The venue was absolutely beautiful and the set looked incredible. Every student involved should be really proud of what they achieved.”

London Fashion Week takes place twice a year, in February and September. However, VIN + OMI usually show outside of London Fashion Week; usually just before or after. This year they decided to hold their Feburary show in April.

Tilly Tyson, a current student on the Art and Design Foundation course who took part in the project, said: “Getting the chance to work on this internship has been amazing. It has helped to give me a better knowledge of how the industry works, with the chance to help run the fashion show itself. But it has also given me valuable knowledge on how sustainable practices can be used, having a big emphasis on recycling materials that would otherwise be thrown away, with myself getting to use discarded fabric strips to decorate a jumper. 

“This project has also helped to let go of traditional ideas when it comes to the creative process with both the types of materials being used but also the ways in which things can be made, with some of the other students creating jewellery out of expanding foam.”

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