Fifteen years of Cosmetic Science at London College of Fashion

South Korea 2

Dr Mustafa Varcin, course leader for the integrated masters MSc Cosmetic Science, presented at the International Symposium on Cosmetic Science and Management organised by the Incheon National University in South Korea. Speakers at the conference included representatives from Hanze University in the Netherlands and Yokohama National University, Japan, and they used the opportunity to network at an international level with other institutions who deliver cosmetic science in higher education, learning from each other and creating future collaborations.

Dr Varcin’s talk was entitled ‘Fifteen years of cosmetic science at London College of Fashion – education and research aspects.” He discussed why Cosmetic Science was taught at a fashion college and how LCF fits within a creative universe, the aims for the course, the student experience, final year student projects and our research outputs. Other talks included ‘Formulation Innovation’ and ‘Psychophysical approaches in human skin research.’

Whilst in Korea, the guests visited one of the leading cosmetic companies, AmorePacific.

Dr Varcin was also appointed as an Advisory Board member for the Department of Cosmetic Science and Management at the Incheon National University in recognition of his contribution to the Department and the BK21 Plus Global Leader Program for the Beauty Care Industry.

Day One: at Incheon National University (INU)  left to right: Dr Kim Chanju (INU, South Korea), Ms Pock Eriee (Singapore Polytechnic, Singapore), Dr Haekyung Yu (INU, South Korea), Dr Mustafa Varcin (UAl-LCF), Dr Katsunori Okajima (Yokohama National University, Japan), Dr Rob van Haren (Hanze University, Netherlands), Dr Cheunsoon Ahn, Dr Eun Mi Choi (INU, South Korea)

Day One: at Incheon National University (INU)
left to right: Dr Kim Chanju (INU, South Korea), Ms Pock Eriee (Singapore Polytechnic, Singapore), Dr Haekyung Yu (INU, South Korea), Dr Mustafa Varcin (UAl-LCF), Dr Katsunori Okajima (Yokohama National University, Japan), Dr Rob van Haren (Hanze University, Netherlands), Dr Cheunsoon Ahn, Dr Eun Mi Choi (INU, South Korea)

Dr Mustafa Varcin receives UAL teaching award

Mustafa Varcin ual teaching award

MSc Cosmetic Science integrated masters course leader Dr Mustafa Varcin has been awarded a UAL teaching award last week at the annual awards ceremony in central London. The teaching awards are voted for by students, and this year there were 1,500 nominations.

teaching awrds 3

The UAL Teaching Award recognises excellent practice in relation to two categories – ‘Student experience’ and ‘Teaching development’. The scheme aims to:

  • Recognise and acclaim excellent teachers.
  • Raise the profile of excellent teaching in the University.
  • Provide a stepping-stone towards further recognition.
  • Reward innovations, which take forward University strategic priorities.
  • Enable networks of staff who can support one another and champion teaching innovations.

A huge congratulations to Dr Varcin and the other LCF winners Andrew Tucker, Bethan Alexander, Fiona Minors. Nicole Dunlop and Paul Bevan.


Executive MBA (Fashion) visits Milan, the Capital of Culture, day two

The group at the headquarters of Ermenegildo Zegna. Photo by Sue Dean.

The group at the headquarters of Ermenegildo Zegna. Photo by Sue Dean.

Executive MBA travels to Milan, the Capital of Culture

LCF’s Executive MBA (Fashion) students, accompanied by tutors including course director Dr Jonathan Gander, travelled to Milan and neighbouring Como for a stimulating three day excursion to the cultural capital. We caught up with the second day highlights from the trip.

Day two 

In the stylish headquarters of Ermenegildo Zegna, family member Benedetta Zegna gave an inspirational presentation. Sharing her insights, Benedetta outlined how the global luxury giant has developed its product portfolio through vertical integration.  Extending its reach to international markets through retailing, wholesaling, licensing and collaborations, the company has added value at each stage. Ermenegildo Zegna has also achieved strategic advantage through producing exclusive fabrics and collections for many of their competitors. Very, very slick, yet also totally professional, Zegna was undoubtedly one of the highlights of the trip.

Antonio Marras. Photo by Sue Dean

The showroom of Antonio Marras. Photo by Sue Dean

At the Antonio Marras concept store. Photo by Jonathan Gander

At the Antonio Marras concept store. Photo by Jonathan Gander

In complete contrast to the corporate world of Zegna, a visit to meet the marketing team at the nearby showroom of Antonio Marras illustrated the quirky creativity of a designer whose world is defined by his love of his homeland Sardinia. Hand crafted, vintage inspired, beautifully embellished form his artistic aesthetic.

‘In terms of inspiration, nothing stood out more than the Antonio Marras concept store. It was wonderfully whimsical and full of surprises. Every nook and cranny was highly curated and it was like looking inside the mind of Marras.’  Valarie Ball, EMBA Candidate

10 Coso Como. Photo by Sue Dean

10 Coso Como. Photo by Sue Dean

A guided visit around 10 Corso Como provided the group with insight into what is often considered the world’s first concept store. Founder Carla Sozzani developed a special and stylish environment where fashion, food, art, furniture, photography and design are edited and changed weekly. The group learned how the concept has travelled to the fashion capitals of Asia.

‘The whole experience felt like something so special, like a little secret oasis hidden in the middle of Milan.’  Valerie Ball, EMBA Candidate

Meeting the sales team at the main international office of LVHM owned Donna Karan provided the group with insight into a company in transition. The recently appointed Creative Directors Dao‐Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne from Public School will undoubtedly inject new vigour and direction for  the DKNY brand.

Finally the group visited la Rinascente, Milan’s only department store, operating in prime position opposite the majestic Duomo. An enthusiastic group of managers from store operations, buying and marketing explained in some detail how the product portfolio is edited and targeted for a growing number of international tourists. An accompanied visit to the newly opened Annex demonstrated how the company is targeting Generation Y through events and social media.

The group on the rooftop at la Rinascente. Photo by Sue Dean

The group on the rooftop at la Rinascente. Photo by Sue Dean

The experience in Milan was joyful, uplifting and incredibly insightful. It brought together real world examples of many elements explored during the academic rigor of the Executive MBA Course. Most importantly everyone found it was stimulating and good fun!

‘…..Milan is an inspirational city to watch out for fashion trends in retail and fashion production.  I strongly believe that the passion for fashion, food, art and design resonates with their culture and it was very inspirational for me not just as a visitor, but more importantly as an EMBA student in fashion.’  Anvadhya Jayadas, EMBA Candidate

Executive MBA (Fashion) visits Milan, the Capital of Culture, day one

Mantra Seta in Como, after a factory visit and presentation by one of the co-owners, Lucia Mantero (centre). Photo by Jonathan Gander

Mantra Seta in Como, after a factory visit and presentation by one of the co-owners, Lucia Mantero (centre). Photo by Jonathan Gander

LCF’s Executive MBA (Fashion) students, accompanied by tutors including EMBA course director Dr Jonathan Gander, travelled to Milan and neighbouring Como for a stimulating three day excursion to the cultural capital. The energy injected by 2015 World Expo, and the creativity of the new Fondazione Prada, has brought a fresh air of optimism. This was intoxicating, as Milan restores its position as a leading fashion capital.

Fascinating ‘behind the scenes’ tours and boardroom presentations brought to life numerous stages of the fashion value chain. This city really has recovered its position as a leader in the world of luxury style and innovation. We caught up with the highlights of the first day.

‘The most prolific thing that stands out for me was the resurgence of old family owned businesses once again building back their business.’   Valerie Ball, EMBA Candidate

A textile testing and finishing laboratory in Como. Photo by Jonathan Gander

A textile testing and finishing laboratory in Como. Photo by Jonathan Gander

One of the many machines used to test the wearability of material. Photo by Jonathan Gander

One of the many machines used to test the wearability of material. Photo by Jonathan Gander

Day one highlights

During a day in Como, the historic centre of silk production, the group visited Mantero, a family run vertically integrated weaving factory and printing house. Modern day Italian silk makers are importing raw silk from China, and completing the final stages of production in Como. Supplying the world’s major luxury houses, Mantero demonstrates how the craftsmanship of screen printing is preserved and passed down to a new generation. The company has adapted to a new era of retailing, speeding up production through digital printing. Continuing its services as partner to many leading luxury houses, Mantero has diversified through forging business with fast fashion giants like Zara.

‘What was exciting to experience during the Milan visit, was the overall sense of pride and passion to the quality, craft and detail of each stage of the production of luxury goods and dedication to the ‘Made in Italy’ statement.’ Julie Man, EMBA Candidate

Meticulous attention to detail, vital in the luxury industry, was demonstrated during a fascinating visit to CQT Qualitex. This company provides fabric inspection services and logistics for fabric producers and garment manufacturers.  The group marvelled at the painstaking degree of checking for flaws. Through a tour of the independent company, Lab Solution the group saw many processes of conducting chemical textile and environmental analysis, based on international compliance standards.

‘Coming from a science/engineering background, I appreciated seeing fashion intersect with engineering.’  Melissa Snook, EMBA Candidate

International Introduction to the Study of Fashion graduates offer advice to future students

For International students keen to study fashion, committing to a course and moving to London can be a daunting prospect. To ensure that students choose the right course for them LCF offer year long preparatory courses, which give International students an opportunity to explore their creative talents whilst offering English language and academic support. With many students then going on to undergraduate study, these courses help the students prepare for the demands of their chosen course and acclimatise to student life in London.

One such course is International: Introduction to the Study of Fashion (ISF). Looking at both practical and theoretical aspects of fashion, the course covers Fashion History, Culture and Context, An Introduction to the Fashion System, Portfolio building and also Academic and Cultural Communication skills.

To find out more, LCF News spoke to Korean student Euna Cho and Chinese student Miaochen Tian who have just completed the ISF course and are going on to study BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology: Menswear and BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology: Womenswear respectively.

Exploring the world was cited as the main reason both students chose to study the ISF course. Both had studied internationally previously, with Miaochen attending a course in France and Euna in America, but they viewed London as a major fashion capital and had a reputation for fashion education. Both saw the course as a vital step in successfully applying to their chosen undergraduate courses.

When asked about the best aspects of the course the students offered various highlights. Both felt that the independent study, and the freedom that gave, meant that their confidence grew. Euna said that she developed her own style and felt more confident expressing it. Miaochen talked about learning to value the process of making, not just the outcome; and Euna enjoyed experimenting with new skills like drawing, and equipment such as 3D printing. Cultural study and understanding was also cited as a key aspect of the course as it allowed the girl to use new influences in their work.

With both students now going on to further study at LCF and having plans to work for design houses before setting up their own labels, we asked them for their advice for future ISF students.

Euna: It’s super hard so you have to be really organised!

Miaochen: Fashion history and cultural study is really important. Also use the architecture and the city to inspire you.


Fashionable Flowers: LCF alum launches luxury online floral brand

Landeau, a online floral service founded be MA Entrepreneurship and Innovation graduate Trevor Patterson, has been lauded by press as ‘the fashion set’s favourite flower service‘.


Combining his two main loves: fashion and flowers, founder Trevor Patterson used the skills he learned during his postgraduate study at LCF to start Landeau which offers luxuriously simple bouquets inspired by European cities that are delivered in Parisian hat box style vases. Landeau’s unique aesthetic is proving to be a success. Having established a strong customer base in Canada the brand is now launching in New York.

Trevor Patterson says:

London designers are renowned for putting innovative twists on the classics. Paris is simply the best at luxury packaging. Landeau’s clean aesthetic pays homage to Stockholm whilst pops of colour evoke Barcelona’s vibrance.

The success of Landeau is an great example of the varied and interesting careers MA Entrepreneurship and Innovation alumni forge after graduation. The course looks to develop entrepreneurs who want to build and capitalise on their existing strengths to develop new fashion ideas from conception through to commercialisation


Alumni can connect with LCF in the following ways:

LCF students’ work helps raise funds for Bag Ladies 2015

LCF Social Responsibility team, along with students from BA (Hons) Cordwainers Fashion Bags and Accessories and BA (Hons) Fashion Public Relations and Communication, worked with the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) on their annual Bag Ladies fundraising event, which took place on Wednesday 1st July 2015.  Hosted by the Royal Bank of Scotland at their stunning Bishopsgate venue, Bag Ladies 2015 was BAAF’s ninth designer handbag auction, an annual event to raise money for the thousands of children who are in care, or waiting to be fostered or adopted. Over the years, the charity has raised in excess of £145,000 through this fundraising event auctioning items from brands such as Alexander McQueen, Dior, Stella McCartney and Victoria Beckham.

This year, LCF students from the BA (Hons) Cordwainers Fashion Bags and Accessories course designed and produced bags that were donated for the auction. Students from the BA (Hons) Fashion Public Relations and Communication course, also made an invaluable contribution, by helping to promote the event to the press and across social media.

At the event, bags designed by second year students, Max Cunningham, Sienna McNiven and Isabella Kerovirta, were auctioned alongside designer donations such as Bally, Burberry, Christian Louboutin and  Alexander McQueen. The LCF student bags raised an impressive £660, making a great contribution towards the £27,000 total raised this year!

Tessa Murray, Bag Ladies Executive Committee said:

Our collaboration with LCF not only raised the profile of the event and gave us much needed visibility with the fashion community – but it also gave us, the organisers a real boost. I found working with the students really refreshing, their enthusiasm and energy was contagious. It was especially great to see how excited the designers were about selling their bags and engaging with real life ‘customers’.

Lindsey Riley, Course Leader BA Cordwainers Fashion Bags and Accessories commented

I really believe it is our role as educators to promote social responsibility and giving back to others to our students, so that they carry this forward into their working lives. What better way to do it than this with collaborations like this.

The money raised has gone towards the vital work BAAF is doing, finding permanent families for 91,000 vulnerable children in care in the UK today, including the 4,000 children waiting to be adopted.


LCF hosts Student Awards Ceremony 2015

Last week, ahead of graduation, LCF held its annual student awards. Hosted by Linzi Boyd, Serial Entrepreneur and author of ‘Brand Famous’, the ceremony celebrated the outstanding talent of the #LCFBA15 graduating students

Students from across the Schools of Media & Communication, Management & Science and Design & Technology were recognised for their consistent hard work, discipline and excellence within their field.

There were 40 awards in total which included Best Overall Student, Student Ambassador of the Year, BA Graduate Collection of the Year, Best Dissertation and Excellence in Interviewing. A special thanks must be given to the Worshipful Company of Leathersellers, Worshipful Company of Cordwainers and Jimmy Choo for creating awards for the acessories and footwear students. Their continued support and encouragement is a great support to the students.

Congratulations to all of the winning students.


International Preparation for Fashion students offer advice to future applicants

There are many routes into studying at LCF and for many International students the International Preparation for Fashion (IPF) course is an opportunity to explore their creative and academic potential as well as discover London, prior to embarking on an undergraduate course.

The year long course offers students an exciting programme that combines fashion study with English language and academic skills. Split into 3 pathways, students can choose to study Fashion Business and Management, Fashion Design and Technology or Fashion Media and Communication. Many students go on to further study at LCF with others using the opportunity to kick start their careers.

LCF News spoke to this year’s graduating students to ask about their time on the course, their thoughts on London and their advice for future IPF students. Here we speak to Canadian Colombian student Laura Rosero-Alvarez who took the Fashion Design and Technology pathway and American student Karoline Marques who studied Fashion Business and Management.

LCF News: Tell us about how you found the course?

Laura Rosero-Alvarez: I found the course through a friend who was searching through the University’s website.

Karoline Marques: I applied for the BA (Hons) Creative Direction for Fashion course and was advised in my interview to start with the IPF program in order to prepare me for a future BA.

LCF News: What was the best thing about the course?

LRA: The best thing about my experience in the IPF course was the independent study. Before commencing the course I was used to the idea of the tutor telling you what to do and how to do it, so when I began my studies in IPF I was shocked at the amount of independent study time. This course has helped me organise my time. The tutors were there for advice but it was me that had to do research and experiment and this made me push myself to limits I hadn’t experienced before.

KM: The freedom that was given to us in every aspect of the course. We were never told what to do but had to figure things out on our own which gave each individual the chance to expand their creativity and use their imagination.

LCF News: What are your future plans?

LRA: I have been offered a place on BA (Hons) Fashion Pattern Cutting at LCF.

KM: I plan on beginning my career in the fashion industry and becoming the next editor in chief of Vogue magazine within the next decade. haha.. but really.

LCF News: Please give us a tip for future IPF students?

LRA: My tip for future IPF students is to make sure you attend all classes, because you don’t realise they are useful until you see the result of your project. All the lessons are meant to complement your portfolio.

KM: Work hard everyday and don’t leave things to be done in the last minute.

LCF News: What is your favourite thing about London?

LRA: My favourite thing about London is that you are never bored in this city, there are so many activities and places to explore, the only thing you don’t have is time…

KM: The endless possibilities. It is a city where anything can happen and you can make every day the best of your life, I know I did.

Read the advice this year’s graduating students have for future IPF students.


Fashion Business School Students receive prestigious CMI Awards

For the first time yesterday, 6 students from the Fashion Business School received the prestigious Chartered Management Institute (CMI) London and South East Regional Boards Award.


The winning students alongside Ann Bell, Higher Education Champion at the London & South East Board, CMI

The BA (Hons) Fashion Management and MSc International Fashion Management students were awarded gold, silver and bronze prizes for dissertations that demonstrate significant levels of innovative, strategic or sustainable management or leadership.

The winning students were:

MSc International Fashion Management
• Gold – Michelle Paulini – The Positive Engagement Strategy: Can luxury jewellery retailers substitute earth-mined with lab-grown diamonds?
• Silver – Maria Dvorkin - Collaborative Innovation in the Luxury Fashion Industry
• Bronze – Yasmine Richardson – Technology meets Fashion: An insight into the recent growth of ‘Wearables’

BA (Hons) Fashion Management
• Gold – Lucy Jackson – The shift in control from company to consumer: How the increased accessibility of online information has impacted on the consumer decision making process
• Silver – Tala Saade – Location based technologies and customer engagement relating to UK high street retailers
• Bronze – Katharine Carter – The influences on consumer loyalty in the UK high street department stores

The College has recently become an Approved Centre to deliver Chartered Management Institute (CMI) qualifications. Alongside the 6 awards, this inaugural year sees 81 BA (Hons) Fashion Management students receive the Chartered Management Institute Diploma in Management and Leadership and 13 MSc International Fashion Management will receive the Chartered Management Institute Diploma in Strategic Management and Leadership.

Andrew Hughes, Dean of the Fashion Business School said:

We are honoured to be recognised by the CMI. Their qualification will help to equip our graduates with the knowledge, skills and understanding they will need to become future fashion industry leaders.


LCF Students and Alumni Triumph at ITS 2015

Seven LCF students and alumni were among the finalists at the 14th International Talent Support (ITS) 2015 Awards in Trieste this weekend, with four students taking home prizes.


The finalists at the ITS Awards 2015

ITS is a prestigious contest that acts as a platform, showcase and support network for young, creative talent. ITS consists of five separate fields- ITS FASHION, ITS ACCESSORIES, ITS JEWELLERY, ITS ARTWORK and the Samsung Galaxy Award – each with their own dedicated jury and prizes.

The sseven LCF students, Leo Carlton, Bianca Chong, Yang Wang, Isabel Helf, Viktorija Agne, Begum Yildirim and Vann Kwok, were all finalists in the ITS Accessories category. Viktorija, Bianca, Yang and Isabel were also finalists in the Samsung Galaxy Award and Bianca reached the final of the ITS Artwork award as well.

The winning students were:
ITS Accessories Award in association with YKK – Isabel Helf, MA Fashion Artefact. Isabel’s prize includes €10,000 and the opportunity to showcase her collection at ITS 2016

YKK Fastening Award - Bianca Chong, MA Fashion Artefact. Bianca’s prize includes €5000, an editorial feature in Dazed and the opportunity to showcase her work at the soon to be opened YKK London Showroom

Samsung Galaxy Award – Yang Wang, MA Fashion Artefact. Yang wins €10000

ITS Jewellery Award in association with Swarovski – Vann Kwok, MA Fashion Artefact. Vann’s prize includes €10,000 and the opportunity to showcase his collection at ITS 2016

Each year, ITS receives 1000s of entries worldwide, so to reach the finals is an amazing achievement for the seven young designers. To celebrate their success we will be profiling each of them and finding out about their collections, inspirations and future plans.


Meet CAPS: An interview with Arthur Sinclair

London College of Fashion believes that fashion and design education should be open to all. To help ensure we support and encourage as many students as possible from diverse backgrounds, our Widening Participation Unit (WP) works to assist students in applying and successfully progressing through our courses. CAPS (Compact Agreement for Progression Scheme) is a scheme that the Widening Participation unit runs which works with partner schools and colleges to offer students introductory courses, portfolio advice, guidance from LCF tutors, summer school opportunities and a guaranteed interview to their selected course.

To celebrate the far reaching work the Widening Participation team do LCF News will be speaking to some of the fantastic CAPS students to find out about how they found their course, their future plans and the support they received from CAPS.

Arthur CAPS photoshop

Here we talk to BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring Arthur Sinclair, who is curating his own brand and still keeps in close contact with the CAPS team.  Read the rest of this entry »