FASHION student Hannah Gibbins' hybrid between men's casual wear and tailoring has scooped her a top award at London's Graduate Fashion Week.

The 23-year-old from Colchester won the Debenhams Menswear Award and joined 5,000 graduates from more than 40 universities across the country whose designs hit the catwalk.

Now back at home, the University of Brighton student is thrilled about her enviable win.

She said: “I wanted to create a new development of men’s casual style, finding a hybrid between workwear and softened tailoring to create a collection for the man who appreciates the importance of comfort and sophistication, function and fashion in a rural world, where rustic craft and durable labour can merge into tailoring."

“This award has offered me an amazing opportunity to work at Debenhams for a year in the menswear team, so I'm very excited and looking forward to see what doors it will open for my own design work.

"I've also been assigned a mentor for two years so I've been given an excellent support network which can help me in the following years.”


Pictured at London's Old Truman Brewery

While studying, Hannah's talent secured her internships with GAP in New York, and London brands Craig Green and E.Tautz.

But it was an exhibition on the Eye of the Modern Mali at Somerset House, photographed by Tom Wood, which first developed Hannah’s fascination with imagery and capturing “the sense of lad culture”.

She said: “From this I started building up silhouettes and details through the imagery of 80s casual wear found in Italian men’s magazines.

"I was inspired by wind-proof jackets and anoraks, encouraging a very leisure-driven look, with shrugged oversized silhouettes, eccentric openings and drawstring detailing.

“Outerwear is a key element throughout, with the concept of taking things that are hard and then softening them by manipulating their size and drape."


One of Hannah's looks on the catwalk

Colour was also a pivotal part of Hannah's collection, she explained, and she fell in love with mustard and ginger tones which she contrasted with grey.

She added: "I wanted to celebrate the importance and beauty of handcrafted materials, utilising local resources and creating a sense of appreciation in connecting back to our roots.

"I was inspired by many handcrafted techniques such as blanket and basket making, which became a significant feature into my design.

"I began to hand stitch checks and handcraft my own seersucker through stitching jute string into my textiles, bringing through this rustic textile into smart suiting materials.”

Click here to see more of Hannah's designs.