Year 1 BA students visit the AQ Market

Year 1 BA students visit the AQ Market

AQ Market

As lockdown restrictions began to lift and a heatwave swept through London, the BA Year 1 students were delighted to be welcomed by Angela Quaintrell and the designers from AQ Market, in person, at their showroom in Farringdon. 


Students visited the showroom in their option module groups of Fashion Styling, Magazine Publishing and Journalism, each set with a different task directed towards their chosen specialism. The visit offered the opportunity for students to meet both established designers and those in the nascent stages of their career journeys to ask questions, explore the collections and gain industry insight.





A rail of carefully considered cashmere coats produced in a plethora of subdued neutrals, cut in such a way to flatter the female form, yet retaining their utilitarian purpose, set the tone of Tutussie London – a sustainable brand that was founded by CEO Sissi Xia just 12 months ago. The former psychology student created her first coat during lockdown and once her friends saw the design, she was asked to make more – this was just the start for Tutussie. As a brand, Sissi focuses on quality over quantity, with a firm belief system centred on buy less and buy better. Sissi was the first designer to greet students and run through the delicate craftsmanship details of her outerwear and handbags, as well as explaining her career pivot from working at Sotheby’s to being a fashion designer. 



Bianca Elgar


“Style over trend” is the core brand DNA for Bianca Elgar, a brand conceived 8 years ago – with two collections, silk and modal, each designed to be complementary and customisable to each woman – building a capsule collection that is transcendent of time. Pieces are designed to be an investment to carry the woman from day to night. A seemingly robust opponent to the fast fashion and throwaway culture of single use garmenta. Each of Bianca’s pieces is able to be worn in multiple ways, which presents a new alternative ethical approach to dressing, that not only benefits the environment, but also the fluctuations of the female form throughout the day. 


AQ Market


Ivana Nohel


A cacophony of coloured scarves line a rail, inspired by 20th century design that holds the Queen as the ultimate style influencer. Ivana is an illustrator, product designer and creative director, who brings her expansive career experience as an artist to scarf design. “People are more about their own style, fashion is on its way out”. With the wearer in mind, CASTANOHEL scarves are designed using colour wheel theory to enhance the individual – irrespective of gender. Ivana captivated the students with her demonstration of colour theory and the different ways a scarf can be fashioned to be the most versatile accessory. 


AQ Market


Out of Sync


Family really is first with this mother and daughters x2 trio, operating from Cardiff with a mission to create one-off luxury pieces which can be worn interchangeably, by mother or daughter, using reclaimed fabric discarded by larger clothing manufacturing. Students were greeted by the trio who looked like a girl band, each with their own distinct yet complementary personal style. This demonstrated Out of Sync’s desire to step away from the norm and present a new and alternative feminine style. From maxi pinafores, in tweed with a fringed hem, to crop-tops with carefully considered cutouts – the garments are made to be worn, re-worn and re-imagined with every wear. 



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Aqua & Rock


The final stop on the tour was Aqua & Rock, a premium, sustainable bio-circular fashion and lifestyle brand based in the UK since the beginning of 2019. A sophisticated aesthetic is complemented by small design details, which reboot classic wardrobe staples, with a 2021 update. Each item is designed to be biodegradable and the currently female focused collection, is evolving to integrate male pieces, with future aspirations of achieving full gender fluidity and a comprehensive unisex offering. 



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