The working environment is often quiet, except for the low hum of air conditioning and the quiet whir of a sewing machine. Layers of tulle fabric fall in delicate folds over the side of a table. The designers on this one-year course, which sits between the BA and MA programmes, are bent in concentration. The focus is intense and unrelenting. Grad Dip is for designers who have grown beyond the undergraduate years of free-wheeling development and are on their way to much bigger things, experimenting with intensely personal collections that explore subject matter often neglected by mainstream society.
David Kappo, who founded the course and has run it since 2009, supervises his charges with a light touch. “It’s a wonderful course – the students are of such amazing standard. I try to take away the fear of failure and replace it with the joy of creation. The journey is more important than the outcome at this stage. For me, it’s important the students identify who they are and what they are about. The rest will fall into place.”
The sources of inspiration of these designers perceive no barriers. David invited 1 Granary to explore the richness of this year’s students, who have just completed their course.