A woman has been rewarded for her impressive career in the lingerie industry and for inspiring the next generation of underwear designers.
Gillian Proctor, of Hallaton, was given a lifetime achievement award at last month’s UK Lingerie Awards in recognition of her 30-year career.
For the past six years, she has been the programme leader of the contour fashion degree course at Leicester’s De Montfort University’s – the oldest such course in the country and which is highly regarded by industry experts.
She has established strong links in the industry with students going on to secure placements and employment at the likes of Agent Provocateur, Gap, Abercrombie & Fitch and Tommy Hilfiger.
Prior to her time at De Montfort, Gillian worked for big fashion names including Karl Lagerfeld and Armani and she was a freelance designer for LA Gear.
Through research and keynote speaking, she has established herself as an expert in the field, in particular on the history of the industry.
She was co-author of the book A Century of Lingerie and has regularly worked as an expert consultant for both radio and television. Gillian said: “Winning the award came as a complete and utter shock.
“Running the contour fashion course at De Montfort is the best job in the world.
“I have been fascinated by lingerie from an early age – collected it, researched it, written about it, presented it and now, on a daily basis, immerse myself in it.
“I am surrounded by staff and students who are all skilled, enthusiastic and passionate about the industry and together we can drive technical process and inspire creative potential.
“Inspiration is everything, nothing stays the same.
“We have made many changes within the course and we will make many more in the future.
“I am thrilled and honoured to be recognised.”
Sarah Blackman, editor of Lingerie Insight, the organisers of the awards, said: “Selecting Gillian as the winner of the award was an easy decision for the whole Lingerie Insight team.
“She is someone who not only inspires and supports the next generation of lingerie designers, but promotes the rich history of the craft through her work as a designer and an expert consultant.”