Earlier this year, LCCA was honoured to have Ted Baker women’s design manager, Michelle Evatt, deliver an industry guest speaker event live at The Gallery. Michelle recently took time out of her busy schedule to give LCCA an exclusive interview, answering some of our students’ burning questions.

The fashion industry is known for providing a fast-paced and exciting working environment for its thousands of employees; Michelle reflected on some of the highlights from her ten years spent at Ted Baker so far.

“The highlights of my fashion career so far have been seeing my ideas in magazines, seeing people wearing things I’ve designed and being able to buy and wear them myself. Also traveling the world - visiting countries like Japan is such an amazing experience!”

Michelle also pointed out some of the challenges faced in the industry: “The hours and the dedication you have to put in [are challenging]. You have to live and breathe what you do to be good. It’s also hard to take criticism in the early years as your designs are so personal. It’s hard to let go and you are still learning. It’s just business!”

As a senior women’s designer and an expert in fashion, Michelle has a top tip for students looking to secure their first job in the industry.

“I would advise students to do lots of work experience and internships. This will give them professional experience and an opportunity to see what roles are out there and which they would be best suited to. Placements were where I learnt the most! You have to work hard on these placements and shine - be prepared to get involved and use your initiative. You never know, they could lead to a job one day and these people will become your contacts and network.”

Michelle’s additional advice for LCCA students was: “Understand that there are so many people studying fashion now. You should think about how you can be different - special - the best at what you want to do, stand out from the crowd with your work. Hard work will always pay off!”

Michelle studied BA Fashion Design with Business at the University of Brighton. Asked about her favourite memory from her student days, Michelle replied: “My favorite memories are being taught by Roland Mouret as he was making it as a new up-and-coming designer in the fashion world, and seeing my designs on the catwalk at GFW after four years of hard work.”

Michelle rated her overall experience delivering a guest lecture at LCCA as “very positive.” We look forward to welcoming her again as one of our industry speakers.