It was an exhibition on The Eye of the Modern Mali at Somerset House and photography by Tom Wood that first developed Hannah’s fascination with imagery and capturing “the sense of lad culture”. She said: “From this I started building up silhouettes and details through the imagery of 80s casual wear found in Italian men’s magazines. I was inspired by windproof jackets and anoraks; encouraging a very leisure driven look, with shrugged oversized silhouettes, eccentric openings and drawstring detailing.
“Outerwear is a key element throughout, with the concept of taking things that are hard and then softening them by manipulating their size and drape.
“Colour was a pivotal part of this collection – I fell in love with these mustard/ginger tones that were inspired by straw and corn imagery. This contrasted with my tonal grey suiting allowed the colours to really stand out and work well with each other.
“In addition, I wanted to celebrate the importance and beauty of handcrafted materials, utilising local resources and creating a sense of appreciation in connecting back to our roots. I was inspired by many hand-crafted techniques such as blanket and basket making; this became a significant feature into my design. I began to hand-stitch checks and hand-craft my own seersucker through stitching jute string into my textiles, bringing through this rustic textile into smart suiting materials.”
As for the future, Hannah said: “This award has offered me an amazing opportunity to work at Debenhams for a year in the menswear team, so I am very excited for that and looking forward to see what doors it will open for me for my own design work. I have also been assigned to a mentor for two years, so I have been given an excellent support network that can help me in the following years.”
About her course, she said: “It has been amazing experience. Coming from more of a fine art background Brighton has pretty much taught me everything.
“My ability and confidence with my technical skills has grown enormously, I feel the Brighton course is really good for that. I have been shown key ways to translate my ideas into 3D, as well as being supported in strengthening my fashion illustrations and digital development. I do feel that through this support I have been able to fully develop my own aesthetic as a designer.”
Hannah interned in New York with GAP, and London for Craig Green and E. Tautz: “The live project with GAP in my second year offered me the excellent opportunity to work in New York for two months in 2016.
“And the year I spent in industry I found crucial. Having this sandwich year on the course was an excellent opportunity to create connections and understand the industry … it gave me an insight into what jobs are out there.”