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Are fashion graduates losing out to celebrity "designers"?

30 Apr 2007

Are fashion graduates losing out to celebrity "designers"? The new trend in celebrity fashion lines is reaching fever-pitch - and industry professionals insist it is talented design graduates who could lose out.

The fashion industry has always been incredibly difficult to break into - particularly for design graduates straight out of college.

In recent months there has been a wave of celebrities, such as Madonna and Lily Allen, bringing out their own clothing ranges. The wave reaches its peak this week as Kate Moss launches her new clothing range at Topshop.

Many people see this as public figures harmlessly cashing in on their celebrity status. Increasingly, however, industry insiders warn that the careers of fashion graduate may be at risk.

As reported in the Sunday Herald, trained designer Yong Hei Fong said: "Celebrity fashion lines take jobs away from graduate students who should be designing instead… it's so hard to start up your own label and the celebrities aren't designing, they are collaborating."

Designer Jeff Banks has also expressed cynicism over celebrities' supposed creative input. He said: "I'm not against celebrity endorsement… but to claim the product has actually been designed by the celeb beggars belief."

A Topshop spokesman responded by saying: "We are the biggest single supporter of young British talent and feature a new British designer every month.

"During London Fashion Week Topshop sponsored the collections of more than 30 designers."

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