For the eighth year running, YKK will sponsor the Graduate Fashion Foundation Accessories Award, which celebrates graduate talent across millinery, shoes, bags, belts and jewellery. The award looks for a modern directional approach to accessories and previous winners have Natasha Finlay from Northampton University for her range of outerwear accessories and Dimitri Gabellier for his footwear collection, who went on to work for Givenchy and Adidas Originals.
To celebrate its support of emerging talent, the foundation and YKK have launched an online competition #TagYourYKK, challenging GFF member university students to tag their work featuring YKK zips and components on Instagram using the hashtag. For eight weeks, the best image showcasing innovation, technique and innovation with YKK products will be selected and win a cash prize, as well as appearing on both the YKK and GFW social channels.
In addition, the YKK team and ambassador Kei Kagami will be onsite at GFW this June showcasing the brand to graduates and scouting talent. YKK is also offering free zips and components for final year students to complete their graduate collection and supporting universities with deadstock fastenings for the fashion degree stock cupboards.
Joy Campbell, director and head of brand partnerships at Graduate Fashion Foundation, said in a statement: “Inspiring the next generation of designers is a key aim for us and having YKK support Graduate Fashion Week and the Accessories Award for the eighth year is helping achieve this. The brand’s offering of support to our final year designers and our UK member universities proves every year to be a hit and the Accessories Award is a fantastic way to celebrate emerging design talent across the accessories arena.”
Katie Doherty, showroom coordinator for YKK, added: “YKK London Showroom have been proud to sponsor GFW and the students that showcase their work. YKK has a long-standing tradition to give back to the community with its founding philosophy the ‘cycle of goodness’, where no one prospers without rendering benefit to others.
“Each year the student’s resilience to overcome obstacles shows persistent growth and how they are continuously dedicated to using trims innovatively is impressive. We look forward to seeing all the hard work in this year’s edition in June.”
GFW is the world’s largest event for BA Fashion talent and this year’s event will take place at Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross, London from June 20 to 24.