Shaftesbury, owners of destination Carnaby Street in London, has announced two winners of its tailoring bursary in collaboration with London College of Fashion, UAL, which provides recent graduate tailors with free studio space.
The 2021 winners are Leisha Parlour and Takudzwa Chigaduro, who will take up residency this summer at 26 Kingly Street, in the heart of London’s Carnaby, the existing home to three floors of established tailors.
In addition to studio space, both emerging tailors will receive a programme of mentoring and business support from the London College of Fashion through its Graduate Futures team.
Shaftesbury launched this initiative in partnership with the London College of Fashion in 2019 to help young talent in the British tailoring industry. Joshua Millard, the winner of the 2019 competition, has gone on to open his first standalone store at 1 Marlborough Court just off Carnaby Street, while the second winner, Sarah Hollebon, continues to run her business of “tailoring with a social mission” from a studio in 26 Kingly Street.
This year’s winners were chosen by a judging panel including LCF alumnus and entrepreneur Harold Tillman, Mark Powell celebrity Soho tailor, Kathryn Sargent, Savile Row’s first female master tailor, Tom Horne owner of L’Estrange and Samantha Bain-Mollison, retail director at Shaftesbury.
Parlour, born and raised in London, graduated with a degree in tailoring from London College of Fashion in 2020, was chosen for her design philosophy incorporating sustainability and experimental craftsmanship. The young designer up-cycles second-use textiles in her approach to tailoring.
Chigaduro was born in Zimbabwe and moved to the UK when she was 11 and completed her degree in Bespoke Tailoring at London College of Fashion in 2019. Her goal is to launch her own brand, Tak, a unique made-to-order womenswear brand influenced by androgyny and traditional workwear.
After selecting this year’s winners, fashion entrepreneur Harold Tillman, himself an LCF tailoring graduate, said in a statement: “As Business and Enterprise Advisor to LCF, this project is very close to my heart. Creating your own business is always a very bold move, even more so in the current times. Projects like this are more important than ever in helping to nurture young creative talent.”
Samantha Bain-Mollison, retail director at Shaftesbury, added: “After a successful two years we are proud to continue to support and nurture future talent in tailoring, a craftsmanship industry that is at the heart of Carnaby’s heritage. We are excited to work again with London College of Fashion, UAL - world renowned for developing exciting designers and skilled master tailors.”