Concept to Catwalk Final at the Olympic Park

Learning and Interpretation
April 14, 2015
A full house for the catwalk © London Legacy Corporation
A full house for the catwalk © London Legacy Corporation


Last week, students from across London displayed designs inspired by London and V&A at a glamorous event at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. With close to a thousand students entering the competition, seven finalist teams worked with mentors from Central Saint Martins’ MA Material Futures to create stunning pieces that brought together London influences, cutting edge fashion technology and stylish tailoring.


Ayeisha and her mentors collect the trophy © London Legacy Corporation
Ayeisha and her mentors collect the trophy © London Legacy Corporation


Judges including design entrepreneur Wayne Hemingway, V&A fashion curator Oriole Cullen and design commentator Caroline Till, were dazzled by the quality of designs from the next generation of fashion designers. At the event at the Park’s London Aquatics Centre, seven pieces were showcased with the winner announced as Ayeisha Khalifa from The Ellen Wilkinson School, in Ealing. Ayeisha was presented with a bespoke 3D printed Concept to Catwalk trophy produced by Wonderluk.


The “Concept to Catwalk” challenge was launched in June 2014 for students in Key Stage 3 and 4 and explores and celebrates the links between fashion and technology, focusing on the textile heritage of east London. During the project, students aged between 11 and 16 were invited to design a new item of clothing that reflects twenty-first century lifestyles and technology-led innovation in fashion.


Almost 1,000 students entered the competition from which just 7 were picked to work with mentors from MA Material Futures. The mentors helped the students to realise their designs by introducing them to new materials and processes and leading them through the process of conceptualising their work. Students collaborated in different ways, visiting the new Central Saint Martins’ campus in Kings Cross, working after school and recording their process to share as part of their displays at the final event.


© London Legacy Corporation
Ayeisha Khalifa’s street art inspired prints © London Legacy Corporation


The final catwalk show showcased the final creations in a spectacular style. Inspiration came from far and wide: from the Olympic Park’s architecture and Brick Lane graffiti to Edwardian fashion in the V&A and wearable technology. Ayeisha Khalifa’s winning entry used collaged digital prints of street art collected in East London tailored to form a futuristic shillouette.


Concept To Catwalk 2015 Jude Furey Emily Jerez Ursuline School Valentina Coraglia Ying Shen Natalia Krajcikova (model)
Jude Furey and Emily Jerez’s Orbit inspired design. The students from Ursuline School used lasercutting, heatpressing and digital print to create structural effects © London Legacy Corporation


Ajith Kurian and Vikran Sangha's interactive streetwear
Ajith Kurian and Vikran Sangha’s interactive streetwear. The students from Sutton Grammar School wanted to encourage people to exercise and the hoodie uses embedded sensors which react to movement to create digital artworks on a smartphone or screen © London Legacy Corporation


Ece Dogan's design using neon and woven plastic details
From Woodside High School, Ece Dogan’s design used neon and woven plastic details to mimic arhitectural forms.  © London Legacy Corporation


Jessica Tang's aquatic inspired outfit with pleated headwear © London Legacy Corporation
From Sarah Bonnell School, Jessica Tang’s aquatic inspired design with pleated headwear. This outfit was inspired by traditional techniques found in the V&A’s collections and imagines a future in which London is submerged underwater © London Legacy Corporation


Concept To Catwalk 2015 Chaneti Stevens Faye Gregan Lucy Ruff Minnie Riddle Stevie Johnson Prendergast School Nicky Vu Ines Marques Michael Gray (model)
From Prendergast School, Chaneti Stevens, Faye Gregan, Lucy Ruff, Minnie Riddle and Stevie Johnson’s aquatic centre inspired menswear. Inspired by designers found in the Clothworkers Centre and by Alexander McQueen, the hooded jacket mimics the forms of Zaha Hadid’s Aquatic Centre and stingrays © London Legacy Corporation


Concept To Catwalk 2015 Naomi Ormonde Chatel Omarsdottir Hannah Berhe Fahima Salha Christ's School Phoebe Quare Anne Vaandrager Yasmin Zolfaghari (model)
From Christ’s School, Naomi Ormonde, Chatel Omarsdottir, Fahima Salha and Hannah Berhe’s futuristic woven dress and top. The design uses the dynamics of Anish Kapoor’s sculpture to integrate it with the movement of the body © London Legacy Corporation


This is a partnership project between Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Victoria and Albert Museum, MA Material Futures, Central Saint Martins and MyKindaCrowd and forms part of the Mayor’s Challenge programme.

About the author

Learning and Interpretation
April 14, 2015

I'm Team Leader for Digital Programmes at the V&A and run events, workshops, talks and festivals with artists and designers who use and experiment with digital tools, processes and manufacturing.

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