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Redesigning the Guides uniform – looking back on Founders Day

BA (Hons) Fashion Student Course news / Make / Industry news in Campus – Published 22nd Feb 17

This Founders Day, we look back on the redesign that four BA (Hons) Fashion students led in 2014 to create a new Guides uniform.

Recognising AUB’s commitment to promoting body confidence and challenging beauty stereotypes, students from BA (Hons) Fashion were chosen by Girlguiding to lead the redesign, which is now worn by thousands of Guides across the UK.

Jessica Gray, Kate Facer, Megan Wright, Hattie Lines and Georgia Lightwood from BA (Hons) Fashion spent a year consulting with Guides on what they wanted, conducting focus groups and drawing up designs. For the best fit possible, Girlguiding also invested in state-of-the-art mannequins, based on population data of UK girls and young women.

Kate Facer, one of the designers involved, said: “I felt extremely privileged and grateful to have been a part of this massive opportunity. To know that thousands of girls are wearing clothing that we have designed is overwhelming, and so rewarding and exciting.”

The resulting work features a range of clothes which have subtle design features to tie all the pieces together to create a uniform. Girls now have a choice of tops to wear with trousers, leggings, skirts, jeans and shorts as well as a uniform dress and skirt.

Anne Chaisty, Course Leader for BA (Hons) said: “Without a doubt, this has been a career-defining project for the five students to be involved in and we’re delighted that Girlguiding has invested so much in these talented young women. Knowing these designs will be worn with confidence by thousands of Guides across the UK is a huge thrill and a massive honour, not only for the designers but also for our university.”

Girlguiding, which recently launched a body confidence badge for Guides, chose AUB as it is committed to promoting self-confidence through fashion. AUB was one of the first universities to host a course incorporating the All Walks Beyond The Catwalk philosophy to challenge fashion’s dependence on unachievable body ideals.

AUB Honorary Fellow, fashion commentator and All Walks Beyond The Catwalk co-founder Caryn Franklin MBE, said: “All Walks Beyond the Catwalk works closely with the Arts University Bournemouth to promote fashion marketing and design know-how which embraces all shapes, sizes, ages and skin tones. We believe young women deserve a fashion industry that values and caters to their individuality.

By asking the AUB’s talented young design students to create a new Guide uniform – Girlguiding has shown not only its commitment to promoting body confidence but also to empowering young women to feel great. Good design and fashion craft that supports the diverse body and beauty types of young women today is paramount.”

Chief Guide Gill Slocombe said: “We’re exceptionally proud of the young women who have taken such care over this project. We are thrilled with the designs – they’re fresh, young and versatile. It was extremely important to select the right designers for this project and I am delighted we selected Arts University Bournemouth as they are clearly committed to ensuring fashion embraces diversity.”