The theory is you can never have too many bags and shoes, so we at InStyle figure you can never have too many bag and shoe designers feeding our obsession, which is why we are delighted to announce the first ever winner of the Fashion Fringe at Covent Garden Accessories Award, Helen Robotham. An MA graduate of the London College of Fashion and an Alexander McQueen alum, handbag designer Helen impressed the prestigious panel of judges, including fashion commentator Colin McDowell, Sebastian Manes, Director of Accessories at Selfridges, Sandra Choi, Creative Director at Jimmy Choo, and shoe designer Rupert Sanderson, and scored herself the coveted paid six-month internship at Jimmy Choo.
Meanwhile, the competition is hotting up for the main Fashion Fringe prize. Elliot Atkinson, Go Tell Them, LD.DA and Yelena Smirnova were announced as the four finalists gunning for the £100,000 prize and the chance to show at London Fashion Week in February 2010.
"We have seen enormous talent and in my opinion every single one of the semi-finalists deserved a place, but unfortunately we are unable to offer that. We took far longer to decide the four finalists this year and that has been because the standard was so high," said Colin McDowell, Founder and Creative Director of Fashion Fringe at Covent Garden.
The winner will be announced in September, following the unveiling of the designers' capsule collections to the world and head judge Donatella Versace. May the best designer win!
By Maria Milano