Pastels and tulle are the only rule for Runway 2018 New Designer winner Tyan Borrell.

Tyan Borrell’s collection

The Runway 2018 New Designer prize, a placement at Sadie Clayton’s London atelier, was awarded to Tyan Borrell for her collection Anthelia, inspired by a soft coral species. “The natural world inspires my collection, specifically marine reefs,” Tyan says. “Its predominant colours are pastels including lilac, coral, pinks and blues. I use tulle, manipulated in a smocking technique, to replicate the underwater life.”

Her passion for fashion goes back to her childhood memories of her grandmother’s trendy style and her enthusiasm for the trade: “She taught me the basics of garment construction and fabric manipulation. This drove my ambition for specialising in textile design. I will soon graduate with a Fashion Design Degree from Liverpool John Moores University.”

Winner – Tyan Borrell

She feels that the Roaring Twenties are her favourite decade of modern times, marking the start of the abandonment of fashion restrictions for women. “It was the perfect blend between style and functionality.”

Tyan was selected over Kerry Cervan and Lisa Cronin, the former presenting a sophisticated all-red collection titled Rouge en Mouvement, the latter a yoga and swimwear ensemble for her brand Zila, aptly named Tropicana for the colours and shapes of the vivid prints which characterized it.

“My collection is inspired by the fabric folds and movements created by dance,” Kerry Cervan says. The way in which the garments hug the figure is achieved from statically placing the pleats to not only simulate this sense of movement in a still garment but also to enhance the figure. This, along with the colour palette, helps truly emphasise this idea of sensuality and female empowerment. There is also a mix of prints and textures such as the polka dot, stripe and frayed edges to help break away from flat red and give the collection an extra edge.”

Kerry Cervan

An admirer of the 50s and the style of Cristobal Balenciaga, Kerry learnt to knit, crochet and sew at a young age from her grandmother and later attended the University of Arts in Bournemouth where she specialised in womenswear fashion. “At my graduation I was also awarded the Nigel Beale Prize for Womenswear design in technology,” she adds.

Graduated at the Limerick School of Art and Design, Lisa Cronin says that creativity runs in her genes as her dad was an architect and an aunt a well know sculptor in Canada. She knew she wanted to be a fashion designer since the age of ten, and she was lucky to be encouraged greatly by my parents, family, friends and teachers all throughout school. “After graduating I worked in styling and retail and then got my first design job at a suppliers in Ireland, where I worked on large accounts such as Topshop, Oasis and Accessorize. This was an amazing kick-start for my design career. I have also worked in design in Australia.”

Lisa Cronin

Her latest collection is inspired by a trip to Lisbon and its street art and tiles: “I adore prints and have learnt the technique myself over the last two years. I love beautiful flowers and plants in our natural surroundings, so my work is predominantly based around my prints and use of bright and vibrant colours.” She designs her prints with a blend of photography and sketches, digitally manipulated and hand-printed in Ireland.

Her favourite decade is the 70s, because the boho, flowing shapes of this era represent freedom, equality and a true sense of style. “From the free-spirited hippie look to the glam disco divas: it was an era that had it all! People wore what they wanted and everything looked amazing! I wish I had experienced it myself first hand.”

The contest was adjudicated by returning special guest Sadie Clayton, advised by the other international designers who presented their collections at the show, Charlie & Ron from Malta and Ricardo Andrez from Portugal.