As the 2017/18 International Woolmark Prize gets under way, the coveted fashion award continues to gain momentum as industry partners, retailers and designers align themselves and their brands to help promote outstanding and emerging talent from across the world.
Indian designers Antar-Agni and Bodice have been announced as the menswear and womenswear winners, respectively, of the 2017/18 International Woolmark Prize Indian Subcontinent and the Middle East regional final, at an awards event held at the FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai. The International Woolmark Prize welcomed a panel of esteemed judges to decide which designers would go through to the global final for the menswear and womenswear categories to be held early-2018. The judging panel included ORDRE’s own Fashion Director; Kirsten Lock, Buying Director of Boutique 1; Laura Larbalestier, Harper's Bazaar India Editor, Nonita Kalra, Fashion Designer; Manish Malhotra, Esquire Middle East Fashion Editor; Daniel Higgins, Grazia Middle East Editor; Alison Tay, GQ India Editor; Che Kurrien and The Woolmark Company’s General Manager for the Eastern Hemisphere John Roberts.
Six regional awards are held in London (British Isles), Milan (Europe), Seoul (Asia), Sydney (Australia & New Zealand), Dubai (India, Pakistan & Middle East) and New York (USA) throughout July and August). One menswear and one womenswear finalist is selected from each region and will receive an AU$70,000 financial contribution towards their next collection as well as an invitation to participate in the international finals. As global partner of the IWP, ORDRE has awarded each International Woolmark Prize global finalist the opportunity to be showcased in online wholesale showrooms, with the two global winners granted their own individual online wholesale space and 360˚ photography assets for a continued year.
“This year we have a total of 64 designers taking part in the International Woolmark Prize, spreading across key global and emerging markets,” says The Woolmark Company Managing Director Stuart McCullough. “The recent restructure of the program puts a greater focus on the design talent and our partners, and the increase in prize money combined with the addition of the Innovation Award for the global final ensures the award – and its participants – remain at the forefront of design and innovation. Our esteemed judging panels and mentors will no doubt provide expert advice to each of the nominees which is invaluable at this stage of their careers. The continued support from industry heavyweights, governing bodies and the world’s most influential retailers cements the importance of the International Woolmark Prize on the world stage.”
The winners of the menswear and womenswear global finals will receive a further AU$200,000 to assist with fabric sourcing and marketing of their collection and mentoring from industry experts. In addition, both international winners will have the opportunity to have their collection distributed through prestigious international retail partners including Boon the Shop, S. Korea; Boutique 1, UAE; David Jones, Australia; De Bijenkorf, Amsterdam; Harvey Nichols, UK; Hudson’s Bay Company, Toronto; LECLAIREUR, Paris; Mytheresa.com; ORDRE and SSENSE.COM.