Pipped as ‘One to Watch’ at the recent Ulster University Graduate Fashion Show, up-and-coming fashion designer and entrepreneur, Melissa Elliott, has credited a chance encounter with a Ulster University lecturer for her return to study.
The emerging designer from Armagh will graduate from Ulster University on July 5 with a BA Hons in Textile, Art, Design & Fashion, following a three year study gap when she perused a career in the make-up and modelling industry.
Described by the University as having a true passion for fashion, Melissa’s work focuses on knitted textiles. Melissa will return to Ulster University to take up a residency programme, which will allow her to access equipment and resources to further develop her range as well as providing support to students.
Alison Gault, Course Director, Ulster University said: “Melissa returned to complete her studies after a number of years out and has had a fantastic year. She was selected for the ‘One to Watch’ award at the recent Graduate Fashion Show and has been offered a place as a resident for the Textile Art, Design and Fashion Course.
“Melissa was a great student, with flair and a passion for her subject and everyone was delighted when she returned. Her work has been consistently creative and shows a high level of skill.”
Melissa Elliott said: “I took a three-year gap from my studies to work full-time in the modelling and make-up artistry world. I worked across the UK, Ireland and internationally. On one of my days back in Belfast, I bumped into one of my lecturers and she was kind enough to not only remember me but to insist that I needed to think about returning to complete my studies. She said she would help me see this through and I was honestly blown away and thrilled that I had the opportunity to return.
“It was such a pleasure to return and complete the course as it was so diverse and very flexible. The lecturers and technicians are top class and show constant support, guidance and kindness – nothing was ever too much for them.
“The Graduate Fashion Show was an amazing event to be a part of – so few courses are able to put on a show like this. It allowed 28 designers to showcase their work to the industry and I was honoured to win the ‘One to Watch’ award at the show”.