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College honours fashion queen

BRITAIN'S freshest fashion designers were rewarded with graduation certificates and a visit from top designer Karen Millen.

Students at Kent Institute of Art and Design graduated in a ceremony at Rochester Cathedral.

Miss Millen, who studied at the college in 1981, was guest of honour and received an honorary fellowship. She was so delighted by the honour she even brought her mother along to witness the occasion.

A spokesman for the college said: "The students were delighted to see her. She is a big name in the fashion business and a model business women."

Since attending the college, Miss Millen had gone on to win international acclaim with her glamorous and, often colourful, designs.

But she has also kept in touch with her roots.

Every year she takes four students on summer job placements. She also tends to employ one graduating student each year. Her designs, which target the over 25-year-olds with a bit of money in their pockets, are available across Britain, Paris, Monaco, the Middle East and Singapore.

As well as her unique and elegant clothes Miss Millen has also made a success of her purses, shoes, and bags. Selling in top London stores such as Harrods shows just how far the Kent businesswoman has come since starting with £100 of white fabric and selling shirts to friends.

The presentation day ended with a speech by Mayor of Medway, Cllr Ted Baker. At the college's Maidstone campus, graduating students were treated to a visit by controversial artist Tracey Emin.

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