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Preparing a portfolio: the Graduate Fashion Week edition

BA (Hons) Fashion, BA (Hons) Fashion Communication and Promotion and BA (Hons) Fashion Marketing and Business students share their top tips on how to prepare a final piece or portfolio for Graduate Fashion Week.   

Graduate Fashion Week is an opportunity for third year students to showcase their best work at the end of their degree. Taking place in central London, it is the fashion event of the year for the next generation of graduates.

“Graduate Fashion Week is the springboard for new talent, a bridge between education and employment.”

Graduate Fashion Week website

We asked students: what are your top tips on how to prepare a final piece or portfolio for Graduate Fashion Week?

Emily Bates, BA (Hons) Fashion 

“Make your portfolio represent you and the ways in which you work. Create a strong and clear narrative of your creative journey and visually express your concept by telling a story. Don’t be afraid or too careful with it; expression is never perfect and if you are too precious it may limit your potential. Mostly importantly, have fun when creating your portfolio.”

Ciara Spence, BA (Hons) Fashion 

“Have confidence in your abilities. I have witnessed many students produce excellent work over the year, and it is clear that the strongest work comes from those who have given their all to their projects. If something seems like it might not work, try it anyway since you’ll almost always come up with something fantastic.”

Ella Whitbread, BA (Hons) Fashion 

“Experiment with the layout, try a portfolio that’s different to the traditional format. It can help bring out the creativity in your work. Work on the portfolio a bit at a time, this allows me to reflect on my work as I develop my portfolio. Going back to pages after a while allows me to look with fresh eyes.”

Rosie Parnham, BA (Hons) Fashion Communication and Promotion 

“Print out your images so that you can visually play with the composition. This way you’ll be able to see your whole body of work, instead of having to flick between multiple pages on your laptop screen. This process makes it easier to work out what does and doesn’t work.”

Ellie Parnham, BA (Hons) Fashion Communication and Promotion

“Be hands on, print out and present the work you love on a huge table or pin board so you can play around. Get as many opinions as possible, fresh eyes are very valuable. Trust your gut because your portfolio is a representation of you and the work you’re passionate about creating. Always give the final call to yourself.”

Kelly Acheampong, BA (Hons) Fashion Marketing and Business 

“Show your best work, I originally included a lot of unnecessary work which made my portfolio longer than it needed to be. Get to the point, there’s no need to explain with text, images and links to your work will do the talking for you.”

“Get help and ask tutors or others to review your portfolio for pointers on how to improve. Finally, put effort into how you present your portfolio, It doesn’t have to be extra. I’m a very minimal person and that’s a part of my brand, so I implemented that into my portfolio.”

Explore our Undergraduate Fashion Courses (opens in a new window)