Emerging designers best start preparing their best sustainable creations, as NGO Redress has officially launched the upcoming cycle for the EcoChic Design Award 2015/16. Following the success of last year's competition, which saw Central Saint Martins student Kevin Germanier as the winner,
this season's cycle is open to entries from over 100 countries across Asia and Europe.
Now in its fifth year, the industry's largest sustainable fashion design competition to challenge designers to reduce and reuse textile waste, will host an exhibition at the Hysan Place in Hong Kong to celebrate its international growth since its inauguration in 2011. "The EcoChic Design Award is a powerful platform that is driving change in the fashion industry. Over the last five years, we've introduced sustainable fashion education to thousands of emerging designers, influenced global fashion brands to produce sustainable collections and reached millions of consumers," commented Christina Dean, Redress’ Founder.
"But whilst we pause for momentary celebration, we can't be complacent because textile waste is still a critical environmental and social issue and our work to inspire tomorrow’s leaders to be agents of change is far from over." The competition aims to promote the importance of rethinking fashion design education and the use of minimal waste design techniques as solutions to counter the growing issue of textile waste that is generated by the fashion industry and its global consumers.
The EcoChic Design Award 2015/16 is currently accepting entries from designers with less than three years' experience who live in any Asian and European country until August 15, 2015. Applicants must incorporate one or more of the three sustainable design techniques of zero-waste, up-cycling and reconstruction into their designs. The judge line-up, which includes Orsola de Castro, fashion designer and co-founder of Estethica and Fashion Revolution, will select 30 semi-finalists in September. The selection will be narrowed down to 10 finalists who will be flown to Hong Kong in January 2016 for the final fashion show taking place during HKTCD Fashion Week.
The first prize offers the winner the chance to design a capsule collection using upcycled materials for luxury label Shanghai Tang. "As China’s leading luxury brand, we believe it is important to embrace sustainable design and collaborate with multi stakeholders, from NGOs to emerging design talent, so as ultimately to influence consumers," commented Shanghai Tang Chairman, Raphael Le Masne de Chermont. "The fashion industry ought to be more and more eco-responsible." The second prize features a six-month mentorship with sustainable fashion designer, Orsola de Castro and the bonus prize this year will see one winner design a sustainable outfit for Hong Kong model Janet Ma.