UKLA JUDGE: 5 minutes with Gillian Proctor

Gillian Proctor, programme leader, contour fashion at De Montfort University, was part of the judging panel that oversaw the brand categories of the 2015 UK Lingerie Awards. She reveals why the rise in feminine styles should be celebrated and tips ornate designs to have a big impact on the lingerie industry.

What did you most enjoy about judging the UK Lingerie Awards?

It’s a great honour to be part of these awards and, as the longest-standing UK Lingerie Awards judge, I can say that it celebrates the very best of what our industry showcases. In my job role, I represent the future of our industry, and it’s a great opportunity to meet with new judges each year and share differing points of view and experiences.

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Why are the UK Lingerie Awards important to today’s industry?

I think it’s fair to say that the UK still drives the intimates world, so let’s celebrate it!

Based on the entries you judged, what design trends or behaviours are likely to shape the market in 2016?

It was good to see a rise in feminine styles – sumptuous lingerie made using delicate laces and embellishments. Historically, fashion trends have been driven by ornate designs and I definitely see this trend coming through.

How can a lingerie brand stand out in the market from its competitors?

It’s important discover your niche, do your market research, develop a personal handwriting, know your customer and use great colour.

What three factors make a commercially successful lingerie line?

Creativity, fit, customer awareness.

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