Award for Gray’s graduate Hayley

An up and coming designer and former Gray’s School of Art student is continuing to impress during her post graduate studies in Glasgow, winning a £9,000 scholarship.

Hayley McSporran graduate collectionHayley McSporran (23) graduated from the BA (Hons) Fashion and Textiles course at Gray’s last year.

She has gone on to study for a Masters in Fashion and Textiles at Glasgow School of Art and was recently awarded the £9,000 John Mather Rising Star Scholarship.

“It feels overwhelming, amazing and shocking to be the recipient of this award,” she said. “I’m just so grateful because it will open up so many opportunities for me that before seemed impossible.

“Receiving this award has given me the opportunity to be able to create a collection without any limitations and allow me to explore my project in depth creatively and technically.

“I’ve also just bought an industrial sewing machine which is something I could of never dreamed of owning before and will really benefit me throughout my course and in the future.”

Hayley’s current project ‘Skulpturvoid is the creation of conceptual, sculptural but ultimately wearable pieces for womenswear.

The project is inspired by abstract sculptural forms by Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore, with Hayley’s own interpretations of the sculptures through abstract montages acting as a catalyst when generating conceptual fashion illustrations to influence structure, form, details and silhouette.

“I am currently experimenting with pattern cutting techniques to create complex curves, panelling inserts and structural ‘crater’ details within garments,” Hayley said. “I am also learning Japanese pattern cutting and draping methods to create interesting apertures within fabric that reflect the cavities and gauged shapes.”

Looking back on her time at Gray’s, Hayley said that it taught her self-motivation and to use her own initiative when it came to her work. She joined as a direct entry to third year having previously studied at Cardonald College.

“The environment was so unlike what I was used to but I didn’t take long to settle in,” Hayley said. “There was always great tutor support if needed but you were encouraged to make your own decisions and develop your own design identity throughout various projects.

Quote marks“My final year was the year I felt like I really learned and refined my own design process which was a great opportunity and a really enjoyable year.

“I had no idea what I was going to do when I graduated! It played on my mind constantly throughout my final year as I knew I had to start making plans for when I finished the course.

“Initially, I was going to move home to Glasgow and try and look for an internship somewhere but was encouraged by tutors to apply for a Masters course. I didn’t think this was a viable option due to the resource hungry cost of the course and I was already really struggling financially throughout my final year at Gray’s.

“As time went on and the course at Gray’s was coming to an end, I decided to apply for the MDes Fashion & Textiles course at GSA. I felt I still had so much I wanted to explore in my undergrad project and doing a Masters course would be a great opportunity to do so and after researching funding and scholarships I felt like it could be possible.”

Hayley is now glad that she took the leap to undertake the Masters course and said: “I love studying at GSA and it’s great to be able to continue to explore myself more creatively in this ‘student’ environment. There are no limitations on what you want to do creatively and it’s completely up to you what you want to learn technically and creatively.

“It’s great being able to have the opportunity to do this again after experiencing this in the final year of my undergrad. I really enjoy learning from tutors and classmates and will be sad when it comes to an end.”

After she completes her course, she hopes to undertake an internship and work in Europe.

“I travelled around Europe last summer and fell in love with many of the places I visited and would love to experience living and working abroad and getting absorbed into the culture,” Hayley explained. “Now I have some financial help it means that it is possible so it’s really exciting.”

She added: “My advice for current Fashion and Textiles students at Gray’s would be to really make the most of your time there by learning as much you can and making the most of the facilities – time passes so quickly!

“In those stressful times, keep powering through because everything comes together, it always does and finally to have fun.”

Release by
Jenny Rush

Communications Officer | Design and Technology

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