The fashion industry is undergoing rapid change, and that includes Queensland. This industry is a driving force behind the state’s economy, contributing to tourism, arts and cultural sectors. Excitingly, more and more designers are establishing their brands locally.
“We are passionate about Queensland’s fashion industry and showcasing our talented local artists to the world,” says Laura Churchill, Director of Brisbane Fashion Month and Fashion Queensland.
“Fashion is a pipeline for creativity, an aspirational form of artistic expression and a powerful business ecosystem that fuels Queensland’s economy.”
We launched the Emerging Fashion Talent program to empower the next generation of designers to find their niche in the industry. The recipient of our inaugural scholarship, Lily Miles, is already running her own label, Sallows while studying a Bachelor of Branded Fashion Design, which she commenced at Billy Blue College of Design in 2023.
And you could be next, with applications for the next round of the Emerging Fashion Design scholarship now open.
Lily represents the kind of designer Brisbane Fashion Month aims to support. Her goal is to grow her label’s reach by honing her skills through her studies.
“I’m so grateful for this amazing opportunity and excited for things to come. It’s a dream come true,” says Lily, who had the opportunity to meet Laura, tapping into her extensive knowledge as the director of Brisbane’s largest fashion event and community.
We interviewed Lily about her love for fashion, the scholarship’s impact on her career prospects and her experience at Billy Blue so far.
2022 scholarship recipient Lily Miles with Brisbane Fashion Month Director Laura Churchill
Why did you choose to study and pursue a fashion design course?
I chose the Branded Fashion Design course because I love how limitless it feels in comparison to other disciplines. I love the sensory experience of fabric and the everyday self-expression clothing allows.
How do you think the Brisbane Fashion Month scholarship will impact your career opportunities?
Receiving the Brisbane Fashion Month scholarship is an amazing opportunity to get my foot in the door of the industry and make privileged connections to further explore my love of fashion and design.
Lily’s creative submission as part of her scholarship application
How are your feelings now that you have settled into Billy Blue?
Coming from a small coastal town, walking into my first day of uni was quite overwhelming and nerve-racking. Despite this, I’ve made a lot of connections, the subjects are engaging and the lecturers and students are lovely, which has allowed me to warm up pretty quickly.
In the first trimester of my Bachelor of Branded Fashion Design, I completed Design Context and Fashion Illustration. Design Context with my lecturer Marni provided me with deeper insights into the meaning behind branding, marketing and response. The Fashion Illustration subject with my lecturer Felicity was exactly what I was looking for and extremely rewarding.
You took part in a fashion photoshoot recently with an alumni Photographer Jade Porttia. How did you find that?
“I had so much fun and learnt a lot. Both Jade and our photography academic Patrick Rodriquez provided so much inspiration and insight into getting amazing shots. What a great opportunity the team from Billy Blue provided.”
Photos from Lily's photoshoot
Through these partnerships, the future of the fashion industry is safe in the hands of the upcoming generation of designers and leaders.