By  on July 14, 2014

Five women’s wear designers and five men’s wear designers are competing for the U.S. regional award of the International Woolmark Prize, which will be revealed tonight at the Milk Studios Penthouse in New York. For the first time, there will be one overall winner for women’s wear and one overall winner for men’s wear.

Both will have an opportunity to showcase their collection at Saks Fifth Avenue.

In women’s wear, the finalists are Jonathan Simkhai, M. Patmos, Nonoo, Rosie Assoulin and Whit. In men’s wear, the finalists are Antonio Azzuolo,Ovadia & Sons, Public School, Timo Weiland and Todd Snyder. (Mark McNairy needed to withdraw due to the time commitment).

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This evening, the designers will be judged on their sketches of a merino wool capsule collection comprising six outfits, with one full outfit being produced. Last year’s U.S. regional winner was Joseph Altuzarra, who beat out nine other women’s wear designers.

Five regional competitions will be held in the U.S., Asia, Australia, Europe and India and the Middle East to select 10 women’s and men’s finalists who will each receive $47,000 toward their next collection, as well as an invitation to participate in the international final. The five men’s wear finalists will meet at London Collections: Men in January, and the five women’s wear finalists will meet in Beijing in March.

The overall winners of the men’s wear and women’s wear finals will each receive $94,000 to assist with fabric sourcing and marketing of their collection. In addition, both international winners will have their collections carried by key international retail partners.

Here are sketches from the U.S. finalists and their inspiration.


Jonathan Simkhai: “I wanted to create a look with wool that is sexy and sporty. I was inspired by the strength and fluidity of Olympic female swimmers. I wanted to capture their athleticism and blend it with classic couture silhouettes, while giving it the ultimate cool-girl edge with a nod to Aaliyah’s style.”

NEXT: M. Patmos >>

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