Hallam graduate wins prestigious fashion week award

1st October 2020

As London Fashion Week 2020 draws to a close, a Sheffield Hallam University fashion graduate has scooped a prestigious award in recognition of the unique narrative and concept of her final year design project.

Vick Batey, who achieved a first-class degree in fashion design from Hallam this year, has won the Graduate Fashion Foundation (GFF) Fashion Concept Award. It is a new award that has been created to celebrate the research and concept development that takes place to produce cohesive and well thought through collections. The judges were Rebecca Hitchings, trading director at Tu, Rob Jones, co-founder and designer of Teatum Jones and Fabio Piras, MA course director at Central St Martins.

The Graduate Fashion Week Awards 2020 celebrated the ‘Talent of Tomorrow’. The awards were revised to a full digital criterion to reflect the Covid-19 situation and the change in delivery of final degree projects, which were completed from home.

Judging was completed in June via Zoom and socially-distanced judging sections with industry experts, including Henry Holland; GFF president Hilary Alexander OBE; designers Christopher Raeburn, Priya Ahluwalia, Bianca Saunders, David Koma and Patrick McDowell; stylist Rebekkah Roy, as well as team members from Tu, Getty, Size?, YKK and more.

Vick Batey said: “I’m absolutely delighted to win the Graduate Fashion Foundation Fashion Concept Award. I was up against so many other talented students; getting to the finalist stage itself was such a great achievement. The graduates of 2020 have overcome many challenges and disappointments during the Covid-19 pandemic, but my thanks go out to the Graduate Fashion Foundation as these additional awards have allowed more of us to showcase our work this year.

“As a womenswear designer, I prefer designing and taking inspiration from a concept I can relate to, whether that being personal or a topic which thoroughly interests me. ‘Growing Up Northern’ was inspired by my family members, especially my Nan as a Northern women herself and how she provided for the Batey family. Discovering that box of old family photos in my Nan’s cupboard unearthed lots of wonderful shared memories and so the concept began.

“The final year of my degree did not turn out as I would have hoped, and I had to adapt in order to succeed. It has been challenging during these unprecedented times, however with guidance from a fantastic team of tutors and technicians at Sheffield Hallam University I have been able to fulfil my ambition of graduating with a first-class honours in BA Fashion Design. I’m excited to see what the future holds – and good luck to my fellow class of 2020 graduates.”

Lee Harding, course leader in fashion design at Sheffield Hallam, said: “We are tremendously delighted and proud that Vick has won the award for Best Concept at GFF 2020. The award is an acknowledgement of Vick’s dedication and hard work through these unprecedented times. The BA Fashion course encourages students to reflect on their past and beliefs, bringing a personal point of view to their work, so to win an award for the unique narrative and concept of her graduating project is testament to the course and its delivery.”

Now in its 29th year, Graduate Fashion Week brings the latest innovative and exciting emerging talent to the world’s attention, showcasing the talent of tomorrow. GFF is supported by 10 global ambassadors and seven lifetime patrons including Christopher Bailey MBE, Victoria Beckham OBE, Vivienne Westwood OBE RBI, Nick Knight OBE and Dame Zandra Rhodes.

Sheffield Hallam University's Class of 2020 Graduate Fashion Foundation Catwalk Show 2020 can be viewed on Hallam's Department of Art and Design YouTube channel.

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