Brighton Fashion Week Talks: February

Vanessa Austin Locke, Editorial Director for Brighton Fashion Week reveals the Face of Brighton 2012

As you read this you’ll be hibernating somewhere between January and February, but as I write it’s that strange time between Christmas and New Year when everyone gets a bit food-addled and drink-sozzled. Everyone, that is, except me. This year I’m on a strict health and fitness regime designed to make me a lean mean workhorse machine. I’m bloody-minded, so I’ll do it, but I’m green with envy watching you all drink champers with your friends and polish off another Chocolate Orange.

Why this absurd dedication at the one time of year we’re allowed to slack off? Well, quite frankly there’s just so much to do that if I didn’t maintain momentum I’d never achieve it. Firstly, and you won’t believe it, but registration has already opened for LFW A/W ’12. I mean, my feet have barely recovered from S/S ’12. Secondly, things are really gearing up in the Brighton Fashion Week offices. It’s six months away but there’s a heck of a lot to get in place before then, stuff you probably wouldn’t even think of like finding the designers and setting them to work on their collections for example! At this time of year our team is small, just a few core heads of department, but roll around summer and our staff expands to about 80 passionate, hard working individuals from hair and make-up to production. If you go to our website now you’ll see that the countdown has begun and right now at this second it’s 3726 hours, 19 minutes and 13 seconds til BFW 2012. You’ll also notice that our brand spanking new team of BFW bloggers are getting going, reporting from around the world on the fashionable things that tickle their fancy. Do go and make friends with them online and follow their adventures.

Offline I’ve been keeping busy and we held a rather exciting event just before Christmas. If you remember last year Sofee Nadine was crowned our Face of Brighton 2011. Well, we’ve been holding voting all over the summer and come December we teamed up with Spindle magazine’s Editor Heather Falconer (our head stylist for BFW ’12) for a Christmas Fash Bash. The evening was designed to say a big thank you to all our supporters, volunteers and friends over the year and also, most importantly to announce the Face of Brighton 2012. The edgy model with a feline face who captured our hearts and who we think reflects Brighton’s strength, diversity, creativity and attitude is Betsy Pannell. And what a beauty she is. Already working professionally and signed to Strike Model Management, she was the girl who Edward Finney chose to represent him in the courtyard of Somerset House at LFW S/S ’12, in that incredible bleeding dress. She wins a portfolio worth �1000 from Create Studios and I’ll bring you more on Betsy as she makes her way through her year as Face of Brighton 2012.

I’d also like to congratulate the Sussex Fashion Society’s charity show, which saw some of my favourite vintage boutiques come together and put on a really super little event at The Basement, Brighton. The Sussex Fashion Society is organised entirely by students from Brighton University’s renowned Fashion and Textile departments. It’s lovely to see students pulling together and putting on such a polished show. Well done to all involved.

Right, well, that’s about it from me. Must get to yet another hot yoga class. Urgh!

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