Ethical Award winner Sarah Murphy impressed at Graduate Fashion Week with her go-green menswear collection.
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Graduate Fashion Week 2012 added a shiny new Ethical Award to its cabinet. With more and more graduates opting for sustainable fabrics and methods of design, and furthermore, implementing them as standard practice, ethical fashion is finally having a heyday. Recently graduated from Norhumbria University and winner of the Ethical Award 2012, Sarah Murphy came highly recommended by Caryn Franklin, following her graduate round-up in The Just Kids Issue. Trawling through charity shops, Sarah hand-selected tweeds, woollen mixes and up-cycled fabrics in her recession-proof menswear range. Textures and tones rich with British heritage merged with an ethical conscience to create a collection that would make Danny Boyle proud, leaving no doubt why in the wake of the Olympics the young are being hailed as Generation Inspired. We caught up with Sarah to chat about uni nights, green fashion and the future.
What’s Northumbria University like? What’s the best student night? The nightlife in Newcastle is an eclectic mix of genres from dark and dingy indie holes to 70′s retro bars, which come complete with sticky dance floors and massive wigs. All tastes are catered for but for students, a lot end up in The Cut where on a Wednesday you can hear 90′s hip hop and dance to the past, apparently this is what the cool kids like to do.
Why did you want to study design? I think design is a great creative platform to express yourself and what your mood is at any one time. It allows you to be inspired by all kinds of things and gives the opportunity to research history, the arts, literature or anything that you find that motivates you and makes you want to design.
What’s the best thing about being young today? I think to keep this question topical I have to refer to the Olympics. I know the idea was to inspire a generation, and I really think that it will. I don’t think that this will be limited just to sports though, I really feel like it will give young people the passion to achieve their own goals and have the drive to know that if you put your mind to something you can do it. And I think that as a nation, with the Olympics as our medium, we really have proven that. From a fashion perspective for young designers, with the vast amount of new materials and organic fabrics, it’s a great time to be a designer and have the opportunity to research, use and explore these materials.
What are your hopes and dreams for the future? To set up a menswear line using the highest quality fabrics from sustainable sources. This is in the process of happening at present so really I should say, watch this space :)
Text: Emma Cooke