YOUNG fashion designers at Chipping Norton School took top honours in a national competition.

Sixth-former Rosa Avilez won first prize in the A2 category of Young Fashion Designer UK, while Rosie Caldwell was highly commended for her work at GCSE level.

The contest’s Midlands Centre received more than 100 entries from 26 different schools for this year’s award.

Eighteen students were selected to attend the final, held at the Royal Grammar School in Worcester, by a panel of judges including retail buyers, designers and education specialists.

Both girls presented their work to the judges and had two 10-minute interviews, answering questions and explaining how their projects evolved from the initial design brief to the final product they entered in the competition.

Rosa’s price is a work placement with the Ink-berrow Design Centre, which trains people for careers in the fashion industry, in Redditch, Worcestershire, where she will work with tutors to design her own six-piece collection.

Her work will be showcased at the Midlands Fashion Award show in Birmingham in October, the Fashion, Embroidery and Stitch show at the NEC in Birmingham next March and at London’s Excel Centre a month later.

She said: “I was grateful for just having been selected as a finalist, as it allowed me to see the amazing work of other designers in my age group.

“The experience was nerve-racking, as the judges were looking at every detail of our designs and were also interested in our research into the marketing and costing of the product.

“I was incredibly happy and pleased to have been selected for the first prize and the opportunity to design my own collection.

“I’m excited to begin working on this new project, as it will be a great experience and preparation for what could come in the future.

“I’m also extremely grateful to Mrs Drinkwater, our textiles teacher, for having given me the opportunity to take part in the competition.”