…as graduate gift designs are chosen

Design graduates are set to gain a new opportunity to kickstart their careers after the success of a competition run by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

The FCO launched the competition last November, inviting graduates to submit designs for gifts to be presented to heads of state, government officials and their spouses, attending the G8 Summit and the Asia-Europe Meeting. Both events will be held in the UK this year.

Final judging of the entries was carried out by the Prime Minister and Cherie Blair last week. “The Government has asked for the competition to be run on a regular basis,” according to competition organiser, Andrew Morris of the Business Design Centre.

The five winning entries for the first competition, announced this week, are all now being manufactured in preparation for the summits. They are an electro-formed silver pen designed by Sue Watkins of the Birmingham School of Jewellery and Silversmiths; wine glasses by Phil Attril of Edinburgh College of Art; a “glass prototype” desk object by Allistair Malcolm and a bag by Emily Jo Gibb, both of the University of Wolverhampton; and three scarves created by Kathy Lloyd, of Nottingham Trent University.

“The Blairs were delighted with the quality of the entrants,” according to Morris.

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