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We Are MA: Annabel Gaelle, MA Fashion

Annabelle Gaelle graduated from MA Fashion in 2018. We caught up with her to find out how her practice evolved during her time at NUA and what she’s doing now.

What were you doing before you started your course?

I was working in multi-product design for a fashion supplier company. However, I was not finding much fulfilment within this job role and wanted to go back into education to refresh my fashion skills and re-launch myself into the industry – and into a different sector.

Can you tell us a bit about your practice?

Through much experimentation, I was able to develop a unique and non-traditional method of constructing garments through various types of knotting.

My final collection was presented as an exhibition of six final garments set into dramatic installations.

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How do you feel your MA enabled you to grow and develop creatively and professionally?

The MA Fashion course gave me freedom, allowing me to discover and express my true identity as a designer. For me this was a much more personal experience than studying at undergraduate level.

The work placements I undertook during the course provided me with the vital experience and industry contacts that led me to the job I have today.

Talks, lectures and seminars that NUA arranged with these industry professionals were incredibly interesting and very valuable.

Looking back, did your practice grow or change in a way that you did not expect?

I did not have a desired direction for my practice before starting the MA course, other than to follow my own personal interests. The development into knotting was a lot more ‘hand worked’ than I potentially anticipated, but I believe this was the key to the identity, beauty and individuality of my garments.

What have you been working on since leaving NUA?

For the first year after graduating I was working as a freelance designer for several lifestyle and luxury brands. Since August 2019, I have been employed full time by a luxury fashion brand as a product developer.

What advice would you give to someone considering MA study?

Do what rings true to your own identity and use the MA as an opportunity to push through your creative limits and explore new things.

Never say never! Take every opportunity that is given to you – even if it scares you. You don’t know where it might lead you!

Speak to all the professionals that NUA connect you with and build your industry network. The industry role I have today is a direct result of networking during my MA studies.

See more of Annabel’s work on her website.

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