Ecouterre is a media sponsor of the 2015/16 EcoChic Design Award
There’s much refashioning happening in the area of textile-waste-reduction, with designers around the world increasingly working to cut waste out of fashion. And now, many of these designers’ efforts, which are creatively labored from studios dotted from the worlds’ cities to its countryside’s, are now consolidated in our new The EcoChic Design Award Alumni Network. Our alumni network counts over 100 emerging sustainable designers as members. These designers qualify for the network through becoming our alumni, a notable achievement that marks their previous participation in our sustainable design competition, the EcoChic Design Award.
Our network unites these talented designers, who have already proved that they have the resolve to make waves in the industry, together in this platform that promotes cross-industry collaborations and drives greater change.
The opening of our alumni network, aptly during the EcoChic Design Award’s fifth anniversary, warrants reflection on how far these designers have come since participating in our competition.
When I think of their incredible development, sayings like “the cherry on the cake” and “the proof is in the pudding” come to mind. This is not because I have a sweet tooth. Instead, it’s because I’ve watched these young designers emerge from our nerve-wracking competition finals, during which their hopes and aspirations were laid bare on the runway, to move onto developing their own confident, forward-looking sustainable brands, which are now gathering acclaim all of their own.
These designers are the living proof that sustainable design is becoming entrenched in the hearts and minds—and collections—of the next generation of designers.
Just one glance at our alumni’s successful global trail shows they are turning heads and changing perceptions about designing textile waste-reducing collections.
Some are expanding their retail distribution, spreading the wings in the process and bringing more sustainable collections to consumers around the world. Wan & Wong Fashion recently expanded their retail to Singapore, as well as Hong Kong, with the launch its fourth collection since the brand’s 2013 inception.
Eric Wong’s Absurd Laboratory is gaining momentum as he adds more retail outlets to his impressive list of Asian stockists and U.K.-based Katie Jones’ Autumn/Winter 2015 collection has recently hit the shelves at Selfridges.
Others are touting their wares and visions for a better industry at trade shows, fashion shows and exhibitions. Clementine Sandner’s upcycled brand recently debuted at Tokyo Fashion Week.
Karen Jessen’s brand, Benu Berlin is fresh back from Der Berliner Mode Salon at Paris Fashion Week, having recently gained admirers at Berlin’s VOGUE Salon, and Bojana Draa’s new collection for her brand, Farrah Floyd was shown at GREENshowroom in Berlin.
Various other of our alumni’s collections continue powering down catwalks from Copenhagen to Vancouver.
And exciting collections are now coming out of the creative pipeline, many of which are scooping up awards in the process.
Angus Tsui’s new collection, which he developed under the watchful eye and expert talent scout, Orsola de Castro, just previewed at Brighton Fashion Week alongside alumnus Tiffany Fung’s brand, Tiffany Pattinson.
Awards were given to Hill Tse, who bagged the Hong Kong Young Design Talent’s Special Award in 2014 and with it the chance to internship with Alexander Wang in New York, and by Victor Chu for his recent graduate show that allows him to add “Best Use of Australian Merino” to his bragging rights along with his winning Study Tour Scholarship.
And now perhaps the real “icing on the cake” is that our EcoChic Design Award Alumni Network will amplify our alumni’s work. The network channels exciting industry opportunities, be these innovative brand and retail collaborations, textile waste sourcing opportunities and collaborations and educational and media opportunities, to this talented network.
By collating them into one place, we want to maximize their impact on the broader fashion industry, magnify their connectivity and propel them, and sustainable fashion, forward.