Chandigarh (The Hawk): An International Webinar on "DESIGN: FROM COUTURE TO HIGH STREET " was organised by the Office of Dean International Students in collaboration with University Institute of Fashion Technology & Vocational Development, Panjab University, Chandigarh.
Alison Gault ,the keynote speaker is Placement and Employability Coordinator for Belfast
School of Art, Ulster University, talked about the skill set required to work with the high end fashion segment. High street fashion, popular among young people and masses represents trends which are ever-changing and which keep the consumer and buyers abreast with the newest in the Fashion.
She remarked "India has a rich heritage and culture to get inspiration from". Alison explained
how her first CAD design that she created was inspired from India's national bird 'Peacock'.
Collecting ideas and brain mapping are important tools or processes for a designer.
She elaborated the concept of Circularity by showing designers work. Sustainability is an
important element in the fashion Industry and how fashion design students can work towards
the same. Another important aspect is connectivity and collaborations.
The keynote speaker mentioned her upcoming project which is being done on a small island in Ireland. She advised fashion design students to visit trade shows, work with museums, designers, companies and industry to learn and connect the academia with the actual working environment.
She is a Senior Fellow of the HEA and a Fellow of the Centre of Higher Education Research and Practice who has created fabrics for La Chasse Couturier Peter Lewis-Crown. Working in Milan as a freelance designer, she was engaged by agent Lucia Raffaelli, Editor of Vogue, which created design opportunities with Jean Muir, Kenzo and Pierre Cardin.
In the Inaugural address, Prof. Rajkumar, Vice Chancellor, Panjab University, mentioned that it is important to work towards Innovation. Focus should be on academia and industry partnership-internships. It is important to develop understanding and skills in this field to be successful and he appreciated the efforts of UIFT in taking such initiatives.
Earlier, Prof. Anju Suri, Dean International Students in her welcome address, emphasized the relevance of Indian textiles in tradition and culture, as well as how such textiles are a vital component of fashion. She stressed on the point that Khadi, the clothing of liberation became the fashionable trend and a vehicle of "non-verbal communication" when the swadeshi revolution was unleashed by Mahatma Gandhi during the national movement of Bharat.
Dr Anu H. Gupta, Chairperson, UIFT & VD introduced the keynote speaker 'Alison Gault' as well as the other guests to the participants. She highlighted the importance of Fashion Design and Technology in enhancing the wearer's confidence and self-esteem and in
making society progressive. Its understanding provides a formidable platform for treading the
path ahead towards advanced culture and society.
Prof. Devinder Singh Thakur, Secretary to the Vice-Chancellor, in his special remarks highlighted the role of women in Design and Art. He stressed
that 'Fashion and Culture' is a medium through which women can be empowered.
Prof. Anupama Sharma, Dean Alumni Relations, mentioned the multidimensional and interdisciplinary approach of 'Fashion' and connected it with researches being undertaken at the Chemical Engineering Department.
More than 400 participants, including the Faculty, Research Scholars, Students from various departments of Panjab University, Colleges of the city and the Region attended this webinar. There were many queries followed by discussions on various aspects of Fashion related to fields like Sociology, Engineering etc. Dr Anu H. Gupta, Chairperson UIFT & VD appreciated inputs and insights of Alison Gault through an extremely engaging session and invited her for another interactive and live session with the students to develop and further strengthen the international linkages of UIFT & VD.