YFD UK is supported by a wide range of leading figures in the fashion industry and we are fortunate to have had some amazing judges in the past who have given constructive feedback and useful advice for our entrants.

This year we are delighted to welcome Tanya Anand for the South Centre, a fashion designer whose key focus is sustainable and ethical fashion and Philip Ford and Suzanne Lawson for the Midlands Centre.

Tanya Anand is a designer who's work infiltrates some of the challenges around consumption and pollution within the fashion industry, particularly the impact of western consumption on eastern communities. She founded her namesake label TANYANAND through the exploration of traditional Indian natural fabric dyeing methods, combined with architectural drawing methods to create one of a kind biodegradable garments, with a zero-waste policy. Tanya hopes to raise awareness about how overconsumption and excessive waste is harmful for developing communities around the world, which for them is a problem of today, not tomorrow.

"Learning through my heritage how to extract dye colours from fruit, vegetables and other plants to create earthy rich tones has lead to the unfolding of a whole spectrum of refreshing hues and tasty by-products! I believe the cross-pollination of craft, old and new, will lead to exciting discoveries for the future of design and fashion. For me, it is very important to nurture our resources whilst cultivating sustainable practices along the way."

Philip studied fashion design from 2001 to 2004 and has created bespoke pieces for the Bath Costume Society Exhibition, along with exhibiting at the Clothes Show Live and Graduate Fashion Week in London. He has run his own business designing and creating special occasion wear.

In industry, he has worked as a visual merchandiser for the high-street brand River Island; working in stores around the South West, South Wales and the Midlands. He moved into the world of beauty working as a make-up artist and fragrance specialist, working for brands such as Clinique, Chanel and Guerlain. During his time in the beauty industry he worked on many fashion shows producing make-up looks, including working with ITV’s Mark Heyes at Bristol Fashion Week.

With a Masters’ in Education, he has been a whole school Lead Practitioner and most recently become a Head of Department for Design Technology and Food Preparation and Nutrition. He has supported the Young Fashion Designer UK Competition for the last seven years.

Suzanne taught Design & Technology: Food and Textiles at Key Stages 3, 4 and 5 in a range of West Midlands schools before moving to Birmingham City University to lead the PGCE Secondary Design and Technology teacher training course. She is now the Head of Strategic Partnerships at the University of Worcester and a STEM Ambassador.

Suzanne has trained over 100 Design & Technology teachers who hopefully inspire and motivate the next generation of designers. She has a variety of research interests including focusing on pupil perceptions of Design & Technology and Food Technology. She has worked for The Design and Technology Association and Specialist Schools and Academies Trust on programmes such as Licence to Cook, Food in Schools Primary Training and as an external moderator for the GCSE Textiles Rescue Programme.

Suzanne has been Lead Judge for the Midlands & North region over the last ten years.

Some of our previous judges have included:

Marina South (South Centre 2020)

Marina South was born in Spain and raised in rural west Wales. After studying fashion and textiles at Pembrokeshire college she moved to London at 18 years old to study Fashion at Kingston University, where she graduated with a First-Class degree in 2006. Her first job was assisting Bella Freud before designing with leading industry figures like Susanne Deeken and Hector Castro. Having worked across design, development and styling Marina at mid-end and luxury brands Marina became Head of Design at London womenswear label Baukjen in 2014.Within this role she began researching into low impact solutions to ensure each range was ethical and eco conscious. In 2017 Marina decided she wanted to take her passion and knowledge in conscious design and share it with as many brands as possible. She began a creative consultancy platform at the end of 2017 which offers guidance for individuals and brands who actively want to make a positive change within their business. This year Marina also co-created creative community platform We Are Formless, a space to curate social and environmental campaigns that are progressive and inclusive.

Alicia Johns (South Centre 2019)

Since winning the A Level category of Young Fashion Designer SE in 2013, Alicia pursued a degree in Costume for Performance at London College of Fashion. Through this experience she gained in-depth knowledge of historical dress which was incorporated into her costume designed and garment construction techniques. Upon graduating Alicia worked as a costume maker as well as part of the wardrobe department for dance productions at The Peacock theatre and Sadler’s Wells including Matthew Bourne’s ‘The Red Shoes’. Keen to explore other avenues Alicia ventured into the tailoring industry, gaining experience in the fitting process and leading a Made-to-Measure department. From this experience Alicia developed an interest in the business element of a company and has now begun training as a Chartered Account with a firm that has a dedicated department for theatre and film clients.

Catherine de Crevecoeur (South CENTRE 2019)

A stylist, fashion and image consultant, Catherine has worked closely with new and established UK fashion designers, styling their collections for editorial or commercial photoshoots and look books. It was in 2017, when she decided to pursue her dream to make something beautiful to celebrate women, that Catherine saw a gap in the market for statement earrings. She was interested in the use of quality leather and suede fabrics and very soon started to learn how to cut and create interesting shapes with them. Once she was able to master the art of working with leather, she continued towards her goal of designing unique pieces that would brighten up any outfit. Catherine was particularly interested in providing statement earrings that would work from daytime casual to evening attire, for women with different styles, taste and colouring.

tracy james (south Centre 2019)

Tracy James is an International Costume Maker, having worked in venues such as Royal Opera House, English National Opera, Starlight Express, Lion King and Madam Tussauds, also working in Paris and at the Monte Carlo Opera House. Having originally studied a National Diploma in Clothing at Medway College of Design, she was awarded the prize for Best Clothing Student and went on to train at London College of Fashion in Theatrical Costume and Costume Cutting. After working as a Freelance costume maker for many years she now enjoys teaching sewing classes both privately to GCSE and A Level students looking to incorporate design, printing, use of fabrics and textures into exam coursework - and also for KCC Adult Education, teaching classes which focus on pattern cutting, clothing fabrication and sewing skills used for personal projects.


After winning YFDUK in 2016, I went on to study BA (hons) Fashion Atelier at the University for the Creative Arts - a specialist degree course that taught the fundamentals of couture dressmaking and bespoke tailoring. In 2019, I won the Master Tailor’s Silver Shears Award and after graduating I have been working within Haute Couture; it’s rich history is endlessly fascinating to me and serves me with a source of inspiration for my design work.

I am currently working as a couture dressmaker for Phillipa Lepley, a bridal couturier who has been designing timeless wedding gowns for the past 35 years from her shop in the heart of Chelsea, London.

Aside from my work for Phillipa Lepley, I continue to develop my own practice as a corset-maker with bespoke commission work.