international woolmark prize nominees announced
Ten young London designers are in the running for the lucrative knitwear award.
Womenswear designers Thomas Tait, J JS Lee, Fyodor Golan, Phoebe English and Teatum Jones, and menswear designers Craig Green, Agi & Sam, Kit Neale, Lee Roach and A Sauvage, are the British nominees for the 2015/16 International Woolmark Prize. Originally launched in 1953 by the International Wool Secretariat, the first prize was won the following year by Karl Lagerfeld and Yves Saint Laurent. Revived in 2012, the prize now celebrates emerging designers working with Australian merino wool.
The nominee-reveal coincides with another announcement, that the British Isles has become its own region, jumping out of the Europe category, due to overwhelming industry demand. Speaking to Vogue, Stuart McCullough, managing director of The Woolmark Company, said: "The UK is one of wool's most tightly held markets. It is an important market from a trade and consumer perspective," adding that "It is also the most important market to inform global trends."
Two designers from the British Isles, and two each from New York, Shanghai, Sydney, Antwerp and Dubai, will each win $50,000 (Australian) as global finalists, with the eventual global winner taking home an additional $100,000. We will discover the two British Isles finalists on 3 July 2015.
Text Charlotte Gush
Photography Mitchell Sams, Thomas Tait autumn/winter 15