A talented graduate is off to a flying start in her career after setting up her own fashion and interior design label with the help of the University of Wolverhampton.
Following graduation Karen, from Kingswinford in the West Midlands, headed to the New Designers Exhibition in London and was recognised by Texprint as one of their Top 50 ‘highly recommended’ Designers for 2011.
She went on to complete internships at a number of design studios across the UK before starting her freelance career in the fashion and interiors market securing sales in London, Paris, New York, L.A, Italy, Turkey, Japan and China. Many of these designs are now hitting the catwalks and the British high streets, just in time for Christmas.
Karen was one of the first members of the University of Wolverhampton’s Graduate Incubation Programme (GIP), a scheme which helps graduates bring their business idea to life. The programme runs for nine months and includes office space, mentoring and specialised business advice.
She said: “The programme is fantastic. With like-minded graduates coming together, along with business mentoring and tailored business sessions, the scheme has provided me with a great foundation to my business. I have made real contacts during my time with GIP whom I feel will assist me throughout my career.”
After exhibiting as part of the London Design Festival in September the designer has launched her own range of interior, fashion and stationery products which are available to purchase from her online store www.karenperry.co.uk and at selected stockists.
Karen said: “Exhibiting in London again was a fantastic experience. The University gave me the knowledge I needed to go out there with confidence and belief in my work. Following this show I have now been selected to exhibit at Pulse London next May where I will be launching a brand new collection of designs.”
Karen believes her time at the University of Wolverhampton’s School of Art & Design gave her a fantastic grounding in order to launch her career. She added: “The course is extremely industry focused, with live projects enabling students to have a real taster of the demands placed on a designer. Specific modules enabled me to create my professional portfolio, essential for New Designers, and to also produce promotional packs that helped me to plan my ‘exit’ strategy.
“I would highly recommend the course. The lecturers and technicians were great – and still are – as they continue to provide me with support and advice.”