Pamela eyes up fashion award

Pamela Aitken
Pamela Aitken
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success on the catwalk is the ambition of one talented student.

Would-be fashion designer Pamela Aitken (23) has been shortlisted for Graduate of the Year in next month’s prestigious Scottish Fashion Awards.

For the last four years she has been studying fashion at Heriot-Watt University in Galashiels and is just about to take part in its graduate exhibition and show.

Pamela, who lives in Larbert, is now in the running to take the top further education award – and win a placement this summer with Marks & Spencer, sponsor of the category.

Delighted at her achievement, she said: “I’m thrilled to have been nominated in the Scottish Fashion Awards. Whether I win or not, it has given me a tremendous boost towards achieving my goal of reaching the top in such an exciting industry.”

Pamela, whose father is co-owner of Square Deal Motors in Falkirk, will attend the awards ceremony at the Glasgow Science Centre on Wednesday, June 15, where she will rub shoulders with some of the country’s top designers, including Christopher Kane and Jonathan Saunders, as well as leading catwalk and photographic models.

Then on Friday, June 24, she will present her one-off collection at the Heriot-Watt 2011 Graduation Exhibition and Show along with 23 of her fellow graduates in The Dovecot, Edinburgh.

Marks & Spencer has already said it is looking forward to turning another aspiring Scottish graduate into a high street designer in 2011.

Dominic Fry, M&S communications director, said: “Marks & Spencer is pleased to build upon the success of our involvement in the Scottish Fashion awards over the last two years. There is a wealth of young design talent in Scotland so we are very much looking forward to seeing some of the country’s best come forward and step up to the challenge in the Graduate of the Year category.

“The challenge for our 2011 entrants will be to show themselves as a designer who can create a garment that is commercially viable, presenting their natural flair and creativity whilst appealing to M&S’ broad range of customers.”

Mark Timmins, course director at the university’s school of textiles and design, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for Pamela and well deserved. She has worked hard throughout her course and has created a stunning collection that is bold, tasteful and contemporary.”

He added her designs demonstrate her unique and creative style, with her womenswear collection created using high quality silks, Venetian wool, metallic organza and coated cotton. She has individually sourced and carefully selected all her fabrics to complement the structural silhouettes and subtle features of her designs.

There are bursts of colour throughout the collection, from rich orange, metallic silver, subtle ochre and bold black and has introduced laser cut hexagon shapes to selected garments to make a strong personal statement.

Her designs will be on display at the graduate exhibition at The Dovecot, Infirmary Street, Edinburgh, from June 21-25.

Admission is free.