LONDON — Nicholas Kirkwood is the winner of the fourth BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund prize.
The shoe designer beat a short list of fellow designers including Mary Katrantzou, Peter Pilotto, Emilia Wickstead and Roksanda Ilincic to win the award, which will see him receive 200,000 pounds (about $315,860 at current exchange) of funding to grow his business.
Kirkwood will also receive mentoring from key senior-level mentors and benefit from a bespoke program tailored specifically to assist him reach his business goals over the next 18 months, and take him from a developing label to a global fashion brand.
British Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman and British Fashion Council chairman Natalie Massenet cohosted the event at Nobu Berkeley in London’s Mayfair. “It’s particularly exciting to be here tonight knowing that the recipient of the second BFC/Vogue designer fund award, Christopher Kane, has now got the support of the big international PPR conglomerate,” said Shulman in her speech. “The winner we ultimately chose was because we were impressed by how they had developed their business along with turning beautiful designs into a brand identity that is already admired worldwide and which has potential for growth.”
Caroline Rush, chief executive officer of the BFC, added, “The caliber of applications in the short list were second to none, all of the designers proved that they are at a very crucial stage in their business when the fund could deliver a real opportunity to accelerate growth. However, Nicholas’ application provided a clear and compelling case for how both funding and targeted mentoring would be used to assist him in taking the next steps in developing a global brand.”
The judging panel included Shulman, Rush, Browns’ Joan Burstein, the Daily Telegraph’s Lisa Armstrong, Harrods’ Marigay McKee, Topshop’s Mary Homer, Samantha Cameron and Burberry’s Sarah Manley, as well as representatives from the companies that support the fund.
Kirkwood, who trained at Central Saint Martins and Cordwainers, launched his collection in 2005. His shoes are regulars on the red carpet and he provided the heels for Philip Treacy’s show during the last London Fashion Week, as well as for the 2012 Victoria’s Secret catwalk show. He opened his first London store in May 2011, a New York shop opened a year later and he launched his first men’s collection in January this year.
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews