Jan Marie Cooke has dressed some of the most stylishly attired women in Canterbury with her designs from Posh of Holmwood. At this year's Canterbury Fashion Awards she was given the Lifetime Achievement Award. She speaks to Joanna Cuttance
# How and when did you get involved in the fashion industry? I went straight from secondary school into the industry starting by completing a three year tailoring apprenticeship. From there I developed my skills into production, retail and design.
# What was your favourite period of fashion and why? Probably now, because designers aren't so confined to one particular look. There is scope for a huge variety of designs.
# How did you feel when you were give the lifetime achievement award? Delighted. It is wonderful to get recognition from your peers in the industry.
# What have been your personal highlights in your fashion career? Coordinating the design and production of the 1990 Commonwealth Games uniforms and the opening uniforms for all the Parkroyal Christchurch hotel staff. And of course, now, the life time achievement award in Canterbury fashion.
# How would you describe your style of designing? Wearable high fashion design with elegance and attitude. It's very important to me that people will and can wear the garments I design.
# Where do you get your inspiration from for your designs? Mostly from women that I consider have a strong sense of style. Chanel, Audrey Hepburn, Diana, Jackie O to name a few. Beautiful garments that looked as great then and now.
# What makes a woman "well-dressed"? A woman who accepts her body/image as it is and knows how to dress accordingly.
# What advice do you give to women who come into your shop? Relax! Shopping is meant to be fun. Keep and open mind and if unsure, as questions.
# What do you do when you need a 'detox' from fashion? I retreat to the peace and quiet of our lifestyle property by Lincoln, with family close.
# What is the one piece of clothing that all women should have in their wardrobe? Anyone that knows me will laugh when I say black, well cut trousers.
# What is/was the best thing about Canterbury Cup and Fashion week? It is a chance to showcase Canterbury fashion and its diversity. I believe our designers compare well with the rest of the world ? both in quality and design.