As our recent graduates are considering the design jobs that they have been offered, it is interesting to consider what skills employers are looking for in a graduate in particular. Why are some students approached at their Degree shows and what captures this attention?

Emily Derrick recently secured a first class degree in the Design School at LCC and believes that it is important to display a number of 2d and 3d design skills and to demonstrate strong conceptual ideas but not to worry too much about ‘employability’, for it is impossible to predict what will appeal to design studios in particular.

“Having produced a body of work that nestled between a collection of disciplines, I never knew how to tackle the ‘where do you see this going question?’ However when a lovely woman started talking to me about my work at the Degree Show and mentioned a role at Selfridges, things started to make sense. I’m very lucky to land the role in such a large company that is filled with lovely people, egalitarian principles and innovative, beautiful work – conceptually driven with aesthetic perfection. It’s 4 day a week job so I have one day to keep momentum going on my own self initiated work whilst supported by Selfridges. – almost too good to be true.”

Serious String A foam-able resinous substance often associated with pranks and Birthday parties is transformed into a series of responses which aim to re-appropriate the novelty through themes of war, form, control and accident. Emanating from research revealing silly strings use during the Iraq war as a means to detect tripwires and one woman’s mission to gather 80,000 cans to ship to soldiers in Iraq. The series aims to capture the uncontrollable nature of the substance and set it within a controllable environment whilst also embracing its accidental invention – initially developed to be a medical spray on cast for broken limbs.


Incubation Incorporated Brief set by the RSA to ‘design a business case that fosters creative thinking’. Incubation is a crucial stage in the creative process which involves the subconscious solving of a problem stimulated through conscious routines e.g. Taking a shower. In collaboration with Tom Hutton, we created a satirical business titled Incubation incorporated that introduces the creative benefits of incubation through the design of incubation products for the workplace. The project culminated in the creation of a branded product catalogue.