ŷƷƵ, Honorary President Hilary Alexander OBE, Chairman Douglas MacLennan, Trustees and team are extremely sadden to hear of the passing of our Charity’s Patron Dame Vivienne Westwood, Designer and Activist aged 81 on December 29th 2022.

One of the fashion industry greats, British Designer Vivienne was a passionate supporter of young emerging graduate talent and regularly attended Graduate Fashion Week in her role as Patron, alongside the team from her eponymous label.

An inspiration to many young designers, Vivienne was a leader of change, fighting for a better industry and world. A true visionary for sustainability, her 5 decade career originated with the iconic Punk movement.

Dame Vivienne Westwood was appointed a Lifetime Patron of Graduate Fashion Foundation and its annual Graduate Fashion Week event in 2016 following many years of support and involvement with the event.

Dame Vivienne Westwood | Picture by Jurgen Teller

Douglas MacLennan, Chairman of Graduate Fashion Week said, “'It was with immense surprise and great sadness that I learnt of the passing of Dame Vivienne Westwood DBE RDI, designer, global fashion icon and patron of the Graduate Fashion Foundation.   

To the student global community Vivienne epitomised the very best of British creative fashion and will leave a creative hole very difficult to fill'.   Vivienne's greatest contribution to both Higher Education and the global world of fashion was her innate ability to question and reject conformity, alongside encouraging a depth of historical insight, a dictate which placed both Vivienne and the UK back onto the world stage of fashion, gaining the respect of her global design contemporaries.”