Search

Aspiring fashion designer starts UEL course aged 71

PUBLISHED: 12:00 07 October 2017

Bernadette Taylor

Bernadette Taylor

Daniel Blackman

An aspiring fashion designer is aiming for the catwalk, despite being 71 years old.

Bernadette Taylor, from Stepney, is “raring to go” on her fashion design degree course at the University of East London (UEL).

Despite being thrown out of her sewing class at school for being “useless”, Bernadette has over 50 years of informal design experience behind her.

She started by designing bespoke clothes for her daughter.

She said: “I just couldn’t afford to dress her in the things I wanted, so I decided I would design and make them myself.”

With design as a hobby, Bernadette embarked on a varied career upon leaving school at 16.

She did accountancy work in many London banks, worked in local government and finished her career working as a nursing assistant.

It was in this final career that Bernadette formed close relationships with cancer patients and one of her fashion aspirations was born.

Bernadette said: “My dream is to complete my degree with a fashion show where people with cancer are the models and stars for the day.

“That would make me happy.”

Bernadette first enrolled on UEL’s New Beginnings, a 12-week course which prepares people who have been out of education for a long time for entry onto degree level courses.

Despite “chickening out” the first time round, Bernadette decided to try again when she saw the course advertised for a second time.

“I went along this time, did the course, passed, and now I’m ready and raring to go,” she said.

Bernadette counts American designer and fashion icon Iris Apfel, who is 96, as one of her inspirations.

Her two children, a chef and a lawyer, are both “immensely proud of her”.

Bernadette is under no illusions about the intensity of the course however she said she has all the motivation she needs to succeed.

She added: “I’m looking forward to learning more about my passion.

“I know it is three years, but the thought of those people who live with cancer, and the chance to do something special for them, will keep me going.”

Latest East London News Stories

12:47

Jeremy Hunt has lauded a NHS mental health trust for its dedication to patient safety after it “overhauled” its way of working.

Yesterday, 16:49

A woman who inflicted 32 fatal stab wounds in a jealous rage on a man she claimed was her boyfriend has been jailed for 20 years.

Yesterday, 13:01

Mystery surrounds the identity of a man found dead on Hackney Marshes two years ago – with police no closer to knowing his name or what happened.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

A call has been made tonight for a return of government commissioners to take over all planning applications going through Tower Hamlets council in the light of fresh corruption allegations of a £2 million “bribery”.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Weather warnings have been issued across London following heavy snowfall overnight and this morning.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

A public meeting for renters to know their legal rights is being held in Whitechapel on Monday as part of a long-running campaign to protect private tenants from rogue landlords.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Joshua Ashley holds a fundraising event this-morning for the Apples and Pears cockney charity in London’s East End to launch his new personal fitness trainers app.

Friday, December 8, 2017

The families of two fire-fighters who died in a blaze in east London 13 years ago stood silently as a memorial was unveiled in their memory.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now