Work placement helps Lochgelly manufacturer reinvent vintage

Livingstone & Sons says it’s working on an exciting new brand – helped along by 17-year-old budding fashion designer Millie Jobson 

A work placement at Livingstone & Sons in Lochgelly has provided a platform for an aspiring young fashion designer to reinvigorate Fife’s rich clothing manufacturing heritage.
The Fife clothing manufacturer, which designs and produces high quality garments for a global vintage-inspired brand, has been hosting Millie Jobson, 17, from Dunfermline, over the summer as part of the Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) Fife initiative set up to get more young people ‘work-ready’.
Jobson has been helping the firm revive what has been described as an exciting industry with the potential to encourage young people to learn life-long skills that are in demand.
The St Columbas High School pupil, who plans to study Fashion and Design after fifth year, says the work placement at Livingstone & Sons has been a fantastic opportunity for her.
She said: “It was amazing to be given this opportunity – everyone was so welcoming and helpful. It gave me first-hand insights into how a fashion design and manufacturing business operates. Also, thanks to the experience, I am absolutely sure that the Fashion and Design course is the right one for me, and I am on the right career path.”
Jonathan Livingstone, production manager at Livingstone & Sons, said: This is the first time that the business has been involved with schools and hosted a work placement, so it was a good learning experience for us.
“It enabled us to pinpoint where we need more staff and skills to progress our business. DYW worked hard to match us with Millie, who had a real interest in our business, and it was great to have a new person, with new ideas and a different perspective on the industry. We need more young people to be involved in our manufacturing process to ensure the longevity of our business and our client’s too.
“We are committed to continuing our engagement with DYW to offer work experience and open opportunities for young people with a passion for fashion and design.”

 

Fife Council says employers in the region have been embracing the DYW initiative, which is a national strategy for enhancing links between businesses and education to support young people into rewarding jobs.
It says it’s working closely with the business community to make sure pupils across the region are well-prepared to meet the needs of employers.
According to the Council, this initiative not only enhances the employability and entrepreneurial skills of young people, it also helps business by developing their own future workforce and continuing to grow the Fife economy.

 

 

Councillor Lesley Laird, depute Council leader and executive spokesperson for economy and planning, said: “We are committed to providing young people with the right education, training and experience to get into fulfilling jobs and careers. We are working hard to ensure that young people have access to a range of high quality work-based learning opportunities to enhance learning and prepare them for work.
“A range of employability and entrepreneurship programmes are taking place throughout Fife to create a vibrant enterprise culture, and produce motivated, work-ready pupils and promote social mobility.”
Livingstone, whose director, owner Kenny Livingstone, approached DYW – keen to give a young person an opportunity in his business, added:  “We are proving that this industry is alive and kicking; with real, viable work opportunities. Building the business from the beginning, and watching how it is constantly evolving, as well as being in the position to employ local people, is a huge achievement for us.”
Livingstone & Sons was established in 2011 and is currently working to develop a new ‘home-grown brand’ – made using quality Scottish fabrics – which it says are based on classic shapes with a modern edge.

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