2013/14 International Woolmark Prize winner: Rahul Mishra

Winner of the 2013/14 International Woolmark Prize

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Almost one year after 48 designers were nominated to compete in the 2013/14 edition of the International Woolmark Prize, after searching the globe and crossing borders and cultures to not only honour a fibre of innovation but also seek out a true master of their craft, it came down to this: five labels competing for international glory against the backdrop of the Italian fashion capital.

Milan's La Triennale Museum played host to a runway show observed by international industry heavyweights, with each designer presenting to the A-list crowd a six-piece Merino wool capsule collection.

But there could only be one winner.

 

AND THE WINNER IS...

An emotional Rahul Mishra has been awarded the 2013/14 International Woolmark Prize.

Representing India and the Middle East, Mishra was praised for his incredible knowledge of techniques and craftsmanship, with stunning embroidery adorning his six-piece capsule collection.

Dedicating the win to his late uncle, Mishra said the win was like a dream and it gave him new hopes for the future of his career.

“This award will change the perception of global fashion in regards to Indian fashion and this is all because of wool - an amazing fibre, the fibre of possibilities,” Mishra said.

“This win creates many possibilities for my brand and for India as a whole. Wool has inspired me and inspires many young designers from India to believe in craft and to create something which is as modern, with something which is as old, as a craft.”

The International Woolmark Prize highlights the natural beauty of Merino wool at the hands of the world’s finest emerging designers.

Besides recognising extraordinary talent, the award nurtures brands, putting the winning designer’s collection into some of the most prestigious fashion retailers on the planet including Colette (France), Saks Fifth Avenue (USA), Harvey Nichols (UK), 10 Corso Como (Italy), Joyce (China), MyTheresa.com (Germany) and David Jones (Australia).

Edging out ffiXXed, Christopher Esber, Sibling and Altuzarra, Rahul Mishra was chosen by a panel of experts including: Angelica Cheung (Vogue China), Colette Garnsey (The Woolmark Company), Franca Sozzani, (Vogue Italia, L'Uomo Vogue, Vogue.it), Frida Giannini (Gucci), Tim Blanks (Style.com) and Alexa Chung, with fashion journalist and academic Colin McDowell acting as a mentor.

“For me, Rahul has won because of his ability to apply his knowledge of embroideries through wool, one of the most versatile fibres with originality in an unexpected way,” explained Frida Giannini, Gucci’s Creative Director soon after the announcement.

For fellow judge Alexa Chung – who also admitted to shedding tears of joy – it was Mishra’s delicate craftsmanship which saw him awarded the prize.

“His interpretation was so delicate and beautiful,” said Alexa Chung. “I was really moved by Rahul's story. I believe he is well deserving of this award.”

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