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Beyond the Bale : March 2018
In front of global fashion luminaries and media, the winners of the 2017/18 International Woolmark Prize were announced in January at a special event during the Pitti Uomo trade show in Florence, Italy. Matthew Miller from Britain and Bodice from India are the winners of the menswear and womenswear categories. The USA's DYNE is the winner of the inaugural Innovation Award. Relaunched in 2012 by AWI’s marketing arm, The Woolmark Company, the International Woolmark Prize is designed to generate long-term incremental demand for Australian Merino wool by increasing the knowledge of and lifetime loyalty to the fibre amongst the competition’s designers and alumni around the globe. Furthermore, the phenomenal interest in these awards from fashion communities and media globally is helping put wool back on the agendas of a broader range of fashion designers, manufacturers, brands The International Woolmark Prize generates long-term incremental demand for Australian Merino wool by connecting emerging designers, markets and consumers with Australia's versatile natural fibre. 2017/18 WINNERS ANNOUNCED INTERNATIONAL WOOLMARK PRIZE The winners (from left): two models of the Innovation Award winner; two models of the womenswear winner, womenswear winner Ruchika Sachdeva of Bodice (India), Innovation Award winner Christopher Bevans of DYNE (USA); menswear winner Matthew Miller (Britain); two models of the menswear winner. and retailers, and consequently into retail stores for consumers to purchase. The designs from the 12 regional winners were judged at the finals event in Italy by some of the most respected authorities on fashion along with representatives from the International Woolmark Prize retail partner network. The world’s most prestigious department stores and boutiques, including Harvey Nichols and David Jones, will showcase and stock the wool collections of the menswear and womenswear winners. The Woolmark Company has also partnered with online showroom platform ORDRE for a second year to present the finalists’ capsule collections to a retail network that will allow wholesale orders to be placed. “Today we saw the world’s best emerging designers present a true celebration of fashion design and innovation, as they shone the spotlight on Australian Merino wool,” said AWI CEO Stuart McCullough at the finals event. “Each year, the competition has been fierce, and this year was no different. I would also like to commend the mills and spinners who supplied the labels with luxury fabrics and yarns and assisted in the development of innovative fabrications.” More than 65 designers from more than 60 countries were nominated for this year’s award, with finalists representing six different regions around the world. The global finalists were Blair Archibald and Harman Grubiša (Australia & New Zealand), SixLee and KYE (Asia), Matthew Miller and Le Kilt (British Isles), L'Homme Rouge and David Laport (Europe), Antar-Agni and Bodice (Indian Subcontinent and Middle East) and DYNE and Zaid Affas (USA). MORE INFORMATION www.woolmarkprize.com Hear more about the International Woolmark Prize in Episode 27 of AWI’s The Yarn podcast at www.wool.com/podcast INTERNATION WOOLMARK PRIZE AT A GLANCE • Connecting the world’s leading fashion designers with Australian Merino wool is extremely important due to the enormous influence these designers have in setting global textile trends for mainstream retail brands. • Every year, up to 70 designers develop and present the most innovative designs, made from at least 80% Australian Merino wool. • Since its relaunch in 2012, more than 384 of the award’s participating designers from 65 countries have received an extensive wool education from product development to sourcing. • The competition’s alumni (designers and judges) are imbued with a love of wool that often translates into their subsequent collections being wool-rich. • The designs from the regional winners are judged by some of the most famous and respected authorities on fashion, and presented in front of the world’s media. • The winning collections are stocked (including online) by the program’s 14 retail partners, some of the world’s most prestigious department stores and boutiques. • The interest in the International Woolmark Prize from the global fashion and consumer media has been enormous – $190 million in editorial value has so far been generated across traditional channels (magazines, newspapers), and 129 million people reached across social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube) in 2016/17 alone. 18 OFF FARM
In the Shops - March 2018