University of the Arts London – Successful Alumni who Founded Startups

If there is someone you would like to add to the list, please email us directly. Please see our shortlist below!




Harriet Saywood- Bellisario – Saywood




Harriet Saywood-Bellisario founded her own clothing brand, Saywood, after graduating from London College of Fashion. Saywood is an ethically made, contemporary slow fashion brand, focused on colourful, wearable everyday essentials – the staples beyond the classics. Made in small volumes from responsibly sourced materials, each piece is elevated with beautiful attention to detail, designed to be worn and re-worn.

London College of Fashion was a great set up for industry and it was where Harriet really started to understand sustainability in fashion; for her final year project she focused on sustainability and ethics across the fashion supply chain, learning about the whole product lifecycle. With Saywood, she wanted to prove that it is possible to work responsibly and fairly with a supply chain, producing desirable items without an excessive price tag.

The brand was established in October 2020 to prove that it is possible to work responsibly and fairly with a supply chain, producing desirable items without an excessive price tag. Harriet aims to change the face of sustainable fashion through an ethical lens, one piece at a time. To offer consumers the chance to build up their own sustainable wardrobe, adding to what they already have, slowly with consideration.

At the heart of the brand story is a desire to reconnect with the people and processes behind what we wear, and in doing so, press pause on throwaway fashion. Saywood collections are small, with an emphasis on quality designs that last, but leave as little mark as possible on the planet through all stages of their lifecycle, in every way.

Saywood works with ethical factories that pay well above the living wage, and natural fibres are used throughout the collection. Recycled materials and deadstock fabrics are used as much as possible, with no new cloth produced if it isn’t necessary. Even the buttons on the clothing are natural, eco-friendly and biodegradable; Saywood also uses buttons made from the corozo nut, or Codelite – made from milk casein – from British heritage button makers Courtney & Co.


Nikita Karizma – Nikita Karizma


nikita karizma


Nikita Karizma started the company with a £2000 order from Little Mix after graduating from the pieces she produced at London College of Fashion. The brand began as the celebrities in London would request clothes from the young designer for their precious popular culture moments where she would work closely with the artist and influencer. The requests grew to custom commissioned projects and later into the namesake ready to wear Label Nikita Karizma, her label grew organically out of the London scene, with no loans or debts to date.

Today, the brand is known for making flattering, playful clothing meant to inspire a bright, conscious woman to feel her best at all times, celebrate her individuality & cultural heritage. With her signature ‘Influencing for Greater Good’ style aesthetic, she develops her style season upon season. Each Nikita Karizma piece sets her customer apart from the crowd and small messages like “Hi. You’re perfect.” and her “Life Is Good” instagram filter QR code sewn into labels to make them feel uplifted from within whilst getting ready.

Highlights of her fashion journey include dressing Paris Hilton for her music video with Kim Kardashian West. Her first press request was by Lady Gaga during her university studies before her work was due for examination, a few years later she dressed Lady Gaga for the meaningful launch of her book ‘Channel Kindness’. Kylie Jenner, Kim Kardashian, Fergie, Gwen Stefani and Christina Aguilera are some of the most influential celebrities that wear Nikita Karizma.

The company donates a percentage of profits to charities worldwide, including local organisations helping end homelessness, hunger and domestic violence. They recently launched a campaign to plant 1 Million trees with Love Peace Harmony Foundation. The studio donated 20,000 face masks to help local charities, homeless shelters and schools during the pandemic.


Sophie English – So English


So English


Sophie English graduated from the London College of Fashion and then launched her own brand, So English.

Sophie remembers her time at the London College of Fashion with huge affection. She was keen to learn how to cut and make garments and chose a course with the title ‘clothing production’ which covered pattern cutting, garment construction, tailoring techniques as well as factory visits.

The practical course included every skill she needed to produce a collection from scratch.
From the moment she arrived with the help of some inspirational teachers and found work experience at designers such as Nicole Farhi and Edina Ronay, she knew she was going to set up in business to design, make and sell her clothes.

The elegant and iconic designs have been inspired by the carefree 1970s, sparked by memories of childhood holidays spent on beaches and boats, echoing the vibrant towelling dresses worn by designer Sophie English’s stylish mother and influenced by her fashion conscious friends.

The brand is committed to Slow Fashion, a mindful way of shopping that prioritises people and the planet. The focus is on sustainability and the aim is to produce high quality garments that last longer and manufactured here in the UK by small factories and skilled local machinists. The elegant designs are timeless and designed to stay with you from one beach to the next, season after season.

All of So English’ towelling range is now available on the website, and as the brand develops, the business are finding out more about their customer and how they are wearing their So English items. The wearability of soft towelling is limitless. With interest gathering from around the world, the future is exporting to the Southern hemisphere to provide an all-year-round business.


Karishma Gupta – Satatland Ownership-Free Circular Fashion




Karishma Gupta is the founder of Satatland, specialising in ownership-free circular fashion. She graduated from London College of Fashion which is under the University of the Arts, London and studied for an MA in Fashion Entrepreneurship and Innovations. She graduated with a distinction specialising in Circular Economy based businesses in Fashion. Her experience at the university was incredible, the entrepreneurship course which I completed helped to expand her vision on how to start a business. Karishma believed undertaking this course made her journey as an entrepreneur smoother.

The company believe they can see a positive change in their lifetime with the power of positive fashion and circular economy. They are a fashion tech startup and a utopian vision of how fashion should be produced, consumed and disposed.

They make beautiful sustainable fashion with materials that either reduce pollution, restore biodiversity or preserve an art form. They offer freedom to shop based on how often you repeat your outfits, you could either rent, lease our buy to save more than money. And once you are done with your outfit, we happily take it back for responsible reuse or recycle in exchange of 10% discount on next purchase.

They are a digital brand and their platform serves as one stop platform to rent, lease or buy. What differentiates them from other brands or rental platforms is that they take a holistic approach to fashion. As a brand they design their own products and offer them to rent, lease or buy as per their customer’s choice and once the outfit is not longer wearable or required they happily take it back for responsible recycling.

Karishma is a fashion technologist and an entrepreneur. She has worked with textile and apparel manufacturers in the east and retail in the west. She has seen how rivers have turned toxic and land is being devastated for clothes that are not worn for more that twice. Because of what she has experienced, she decided to put an end to the madness and start Satatland with her dream to create a zero compromise fashion brand.


Sinéad Flood – July Child


sinead flood july child


The out-there indie jewellery boutique seen all over Instagram, bringing crazy colourful, nostalgia-inducing OTT styles to those who are loud and proud.

At July Child, the team are obsessed with 90s and 00s fashion, cute pop culture moments and anything that’s glittery or sparkly.
Their website first launched in 2017 and is an edit of some of the world’s best underground jewellery brands, alongside their own line – Daughter By JulyChild. They have since garnered a cult following online and are now stocked at Hypebeast, Fenwicks Bond Street and Urban Outfitters (!!!!).

July Child founder Sinéad is the brains behind the brand (they get the name from her birth month), and she designs all the Daughter By July Child pieces from her home in Manchester. She works directly with the production team to make sure the jewels she dreams up are the best quality ever.

Everything the company makes is small batch to reduce waste and their packaging is recyclable too (minus their iconic ring boxes, they are designed to last a lifetime). Being sustainable is a pretty big deal to the team and they’re working on using only recycled metals in the future – just watch this space.

Sinéad has been called the ‘queen of jewellery’ more times than they can count, and July Child has been praised by ELLE, Cosmo, Harpers Bazaar, Nylon, Sunday Times Style, Grazia and Refinery 29!


If there is someone you would like to add to the list, please email us directly.