New Delhi: Designer Manish Malhotra, a judge at the International Woolmark Prize (IWP) Indian Subcontinent & Middle East regional final 2017/18, says that it will be a breath of fresh air for him to see and acknowledge fresh talent emerging in the industry and changing the game of fashion globally.
“Every designer who will be making it to this prestigious platform will be celebrated in their own right. It is a breath of fresh air to see and acknowledge fresh talent emerging in the industry and changing the game of fashion globally,” the designer told IANS.
However he has few guidelines for the participants.
“There are few inevitable parameters that one has to keep in mind like design aesthetics, clean finishing, sustainability and saleability and commercial viability. What makes The International Woolmark Prize really unique is that the participating designers have to create a look that integrates a minimum of 80 percent merino wool,” he added.
This year’s India, Pakistan & Middle East regional final will take place on July 24 in Dubai. The judges will decide which designers will go through to the global final for the menswear and womenswear categories to be held early next year.
The judges include Kirsten Lock, Fashion Director at ORDRE.COM; Laura Larbalestier, Buying Director of Boutique 1; and John Roberts, General Manager Eastern Hemisphere, The Woolmark Company.
Apart from Dubai, five other regional fianls will be held through July and August in Seoul (designers from Asia), Sydney (designers from Australia and New Zealand), London (designers from the British Isles), Milan (designers from Europe) and New York
(designers from the US).
One menswear and one womenswear finalist will be selected from each region and will receive AU$70,000 towards their next collection as well as an invitation to participate in the international finals.
“This year we have a total of 64 designers taking part in the International Woolmark Prize, spreading across key global and emerging markets,” said Stuart McCullough, The Woolmark Company Managing Director.
“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, he added.
The previous winners of Woolmark prize included Indian designer Rahul Mishra.
Malhotra feels that Over the years, the award has gained a highly coveted status in the industry and celebrates beauty and versatility on a global platform.
“With changing perceptions and emerging trends in India, there is a major scope to accelerate the scale of experimentation in fashion today. Creative minds from all over the world put in their 100 percent to showcase their traditional craft and designs to not just a particular segment but to a larger audience,” he said.