FIVE Bournemouth-based students have led the first redesign of the Guides uniform in 14 years.

Members of the Arts University Bournemouth’s BA (Hons) Fashion course were chosen by Girlguiding to update the uniform, which will now be worn by Guides across the UK.

Jessica Gray, Kate Facer, Megan Wright, Hattie Lines and Georgia Lightwood spent a year consulting with Guides on what they wanted, conducting focus groups and drawing up designs.

The resulting work features a range of clothes, which have subtle design features to tie all the pieces together to create a uniform.

Girls now have a choice of tops to wear with trousers, leggings, skirts, jeans and shorts as well as a uniform dress and skirt.

Jessica, 22, said: “Knowing thousands of girls will be wearing our designs is so exciting, it has been amazing to work towards such a rewarding outcome and I can’t wait to see all our hard work being enjoyed and worn with confidence.”

Anne Chaisty, course leader, said: “Without a doubt, this has been a career-defining project for the five students to be involved in and we’re delighted that Girlguiding has invested so much in these talented young women. Knowing these designs will be worn with confidence by thousands of Guides across the UK is a huge thrill and a massive honour, not only for the designers but also for our university.”

AUB was one of the first universities to host a course incorporating the All Walks Beyond The Catwalk philosophy to challenge fashion’s dependence on unachievable body ideals.

AUB Honorary Fellow, fashion commentator and All Walks Beyond The Catwalk co-founder Caryn Franklin MBE, said: “All Walks Beyond the Catwalk works closely with the Arts University Bournemouth to promote fashion marketing and design know-how which embraces all shapes, sizes, ages and skin tones. We believe young women deserve a fashion industry that values and caters to their individuality.

“By asking the AUB’s talented young design students to create a new Guide uniform – Girlguiding has shown not only its commitment to promoting body confidence but also to empowering young women to feel great. Good design and fashion craft that supports the diverse body and beauty types of young women today is paramount.”

Chief Guide Gill Slocombe added: “We’re exceptionally proud of the young women who have taken such care over this project. We are thrilled with the designs – they’re fresh, young and versatile. It was extremely important to select the right designers for this project and I am delighted we selected Arts University Bournemouth as they are clearly committed to ensuring fashion embraces diversity.”