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ITS 2020 announces winners, including five from British schools

By Danielle Wightman-Stone


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The International Talent Support competition, which celebrates and promotes emerging designers, has named its 2020 winners, including five from British design schools.

The annual event, which was postponed from July to October 23, 2020, due to the coronavirus pandemic, was held virtually and showcased the 32 finalists and their projects as part of the awards ceremony.

The new format organisers stated enabled “a global audience to take a closer look at the finalist’s projects, to discover the details and see them come to life on a set”.

The design competition also allowed viewers for the first time to vote for their favourite designers from home during the live streaming to assign the ITS People’s Choice Award. Olivia Rubens, from London College of Fashion, won the ITS Responsible Fashion Award, winning 10,000 euros and a tutorship on responsible creativity by Fashion Revolution. Rubens was praised by the judges for “merging a challenging, socially relevant concept with a responsible way to do fashion, all the while experimenting with silhouettes and shapes”.

Her designs were inspired by the investigation into women’s ‘true’ selves and their perception of others, which was showcased with “humour and poignancy and delivered with captivating image-making,” adds ITS. The London-based, Canadian sustainable womenswear designer also used only biodegradable, natural materials with certified traceability and natural dyes in her collection. Ruben also took home the Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana Award, winning 5,000 euros.

London College of Fashion, Central Saint Martins and Royal College of Art in London graduates win awards at ITS 2020

There was also success for Central Saint Martins, with Cameron Williams winning the Vogue Talents Special Mention accolade, meaning his collection will be featured on the Vogue Talents website. In addition, Italian fashion governing body, Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana, has also invited him to take part in the next edition of Fashion Hub, while Fashion Revolution offered him a tutorship.

Williams was praised by the judges for bringing “new emotions through precise aesthetic and traditions” in his collection. Johanna Parv, also a student at Central Saint Martins, was named the Lotto Sport Award winner for “perfectly reimagining Lotto’s tennis heritage and adapting it for the modern world in the most original way”. As the winner, Parv will receive a three-month internship with the brand and develop a sports-inspired capsule collection.

The Tallinn-born, London-based designer also received the ITS Fashion@Work by illy Award, alongside Graduate Fashion Week George Catwalk to Store Award 2019 winner Rosie Baird from Edinburgh College of Art. Judges stated that the high standards of entries for the award meant they decided to reward two designs.

Image: Cameron Williams and Clara Chu

Other winners included Portuguese designer Clara Chu winning the ITS Responsible Accessories Award for her handbag collection that transformed kitchenware and household objects like water bottles, ice-cube trays and jar openers, plus the humble Tupperware lunch box, into a colourful collection of fashion accessories. As the winner, she was awarded 10,000 euros and a tutorship by Fashion Revolution.

The International Talent Support competition announces 2020 winners

Chinese-born designer Syna Chen won the ITS Press Choice Award for presenting “a balance between a creative technological approach and sustainable parameters,” which the judges added, “blended with an imaginative, polished and poetic work on shapes and volumes”. Chen takes home 5,000 euros.

Image: Syna Chen and Andrew Bell

The OTB Award was presented to emerging Irish talent, Andrew Bell who studied at Royal College of Art in London. Judges said that his project told “a story of elegance with an engineering approach where every single detail, from the pattern, to the construction”. As the winner, he takes home 10,000 euros and might be offered an internship with one of the group’s brands.

In addition, Bell was named the Pitti Immagine Award winner. He will receive a six-month mentorship programme offered by the tutoring and consulting direction of Pitti Immagine and the opportunity to participate in the women’s fair in February 2021 in Milan. The Diesel Award, which comes with 10,000 euros cash prize and a six-month internship at Diesel’s HQ in Italy, was won by Noa Baruch from Israel. Judges said that her “truly innovative point of view on denim” caught their attention. Baruch presented a responsible collection featuring only denim laser engraving and a simple home wash, creating different checkers patterns and shades of denim, revealing the potential of 3D design simulation.

Parsons School of Design graduate Ji Min Lee won the Tomorrow Entrepreneurial Creativity Award. The South Korean menswear designer will be able to showcase her collection at the Tomorrow Le Palais Showroom.

Image: Felipe Fiallo

The ITS Fondazione Ferragamo Award was presented to sustainable footwear designer Felipe Fiallo. He wins 5,000 euros and the opportunity to intern in the company’s creative department.

The Latin American designer also scooped the ITS People’s Choice Award and takes home an additional 1,000 euros.

Images: courtesy of International Talent Support (ITS); Main image - Olivia Rubens and Johanna Parv for Lotto Sports

Emerging Designers
International Talent Support