Please upgrade your browser

For the best experience, you should upgrade your browser. Visit our accessibility page to view a list of supported browsers along with links to download the latest version.

Hannah Refaat

MA work

Exploring ethical supply chain practices for the fashion industry, taking visual inspiration from the Middle East.

After contributing to the charity Yadayna, I have been able to question the ethics within the high-fashion industry. Yadayna purchases materials, provides teaching and work to refugee women in Beirut, and the Syria/Lebanon border, Zahle. The charity then markets the products and sells internationally. During my visit to Lebanon, I met with refugee women who spoke about the impact of such projects on their lives and how appreciative they are that they can be independent, and can support their families. This ethical framework of a transparent supply chain, which values every individual, is driving my project and future ambitions. This experience gave me an understanding of this business model, which I aim to pursue during my career.

The initial visual research I have explored for this personal project is the landscape, territory and environment of the Middle East. This theme focuses on culture, people and location. The hand-made quality and process of detailed embroidery techniques draws together my inspiration from the landscape, environment and the members of the community. This enables me to consider the impact of my pieces and draw attention to the issues of the displaced people in developing communities.

My work, which is predominantly for fashion, consists of traditional forms of embroidery used in contemporary and inventive ways. I use hand embroidery and beadwork, as well as Irish embroidery. I tend to use detailed and traditional techniques that are now becoming less widely used. My intention is to discover innovative ways of applying these traditional skills. These skills are also transferable, as I aim to challenge typical fashion standards, giving artisans in the developing world opportunities by recognising their value, and producing ethical textiles for fashion.

I have selected three successful techniques after developing them throughout the year to take forward as garments to visualise my textiles on the body. This has also given me the foundation of the business model I aim to pursue. 

Info

  • MA Degree

    School

    School of Design

    Programme

    MA Textiles, 2017

    Specialism

    mixed media

  • Hannah's work, which is predominantly for fashion, consists of traditional forms of embroidery used in contemporary and inventive ways. Techniques used are hand embroidery and beadwork, as well as Irish embroidery. Hannah tends to use detailed and traditional techniques that are now becoming less widely used. Her intention is to discover innovative ways of applying these traditional skills. These skills are also transferable, as she aims to challenge typical fashion standards, giving artisans in the developing world opportunities by recognising their value, and producing ethical textiles for fashion.

    Hannah has been inspired by an ethical framework after contributing with charity Yadayna, based in Egypt, which purchases materials, provides teaching and work to refugee women in Beirut, and the Syria/Lebanon border.

    This transparent supply chain, which values every individual, is driving her project and future ambitions. She has developed more of an understanding of a business model, which she aims to pursue.


  • Degrees

  • First Class, BA (Hons) Textiles, Loughborough University, 2015
  • Experience

  • Freelance embroidery designer Christmas Campaign, Bombay Sapphire Gin, London, 2016; Styling assistant, Mary-Anna Kearney, London, 2016; Intern, Julien Macdonald, London, 2016; Paid intern, Alexander McQueen, London, 2016; Freelance print designer, House of Fraser, Label Lab, London, 2015; Paid intern, Diane Von Furstenberg, New York, 2014; Intern, Bay & Brown, London, 2014; Intern, Tom Cody Design, London, 2013; Intern, Gather No Moss, London, 2012
  • Exhibitions

  • Jupiter Asset Management, Zig Zag Building, London, 2016; The Knitting and Stitching Show, Harrogate International Centre, Harrogate, 2015; The Knitting and Stitching Show, Alexandra Palace, London, 2015; New Designers, Business Design Centre, London, 2015
  • Awards

  • The Eaton Fund, 2017; Worshipful Company of Needlemakers, 2017; Short listed for New Designer of the Year, 2015; Edward Sharp Award, 2015