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Rocha girl is star of London Fashion Week

SIMONE Rocha is gearing up to follow in her designer dad John's footsteps and take London Fashion Week by storm.

The event is two months away, but British-based Simone was one of three likely contenders revealed yesterday when the talent showcase Fashion East announced its latest line-up.

Rocha finished an MA at Central Saint Martins College in February, where the course director, Louise Wilson, praised her, "strong, modern, sympathetic approach to womenswear and an eclectic eye for accessories".

Dublin-based John says her style is more "edgy" than his, but says they share "an understanding of fabric".

The other Fashion East names are both graduates of the Royal College of Art; Felicity Brown, who will make her debut for the spring/summer 2011 show, and the Finnish designer Heikki Salonen, who will return for his third season.

Many of the most innovative and celebrated designers in the world have found their feet at London Fashion Week, which has a strong reputation for producing exciting designers such as John Galliano, Alexander McQueen and Hussein Chalayan.

Fashion East, which celebrates its 10th anniversary in September, has helped to further that reputation since it was established as a non-profit making project in 2000 by Lulu Kennedy.

Mary Homer, Topshop's managing director, said: "Lulu Kennedy and her panel of insiders have consistently shown a talent for identifying the best of British-based designers, giving them a credible platform to show their collections."