LONDON — Royal College of Art graduate Hannah Jinkins was named winner of this year’s H&M Design Awards, which took place at Kensington Palace on Monday with a judging panel that included Kate Bosworth, Olivier Rousteing, Nick Knight and Chiara Ferragni.
According to Ann-Sofie Johansson, creative adviser of H&M, Jinkins won over the jury with her “raw yet defined” aesthetic. “This is the direction contemporary women’s wear is heading towards,” said Johansson.
Other London-based finalists included Ka Wa Key Chow, also from the Royal College of Art, as well as three Central St. Martins graduates: Milligan Beaumont, Jemma Beech and Gabriel Castro.
Long Xu from the New School’s Parsons School of Design; Enoch Chung from Sadi design school in Seoul, South Korea, and Patrik Guggenberger, who represented Stockholm’s Beckmans college, rounded off the eight people shortlisted by the H&M team from a list of 23 semifinalists.
“I was very interested in Hannah’s process. She’s been trying the clothes on lots of different women, basing the fit of her garments on their feedback. I loved the shapes and even though she’s been currently working a lot with denim, her techniques can also be applied onto luxury fabrics,” said Katie England, another jury member.
England named Chow as another standout. Inspired by Matisse paintings, Chow hand-embroidered raffia and pastel-hued wool onto oversize vests and sweaters. Beaumont also delivered a standout collection, mixing skate culture with Japanese influences.
Jinkins plans to invest the 50,000-euro, $54,250, H&M prize money in her own label, which is in the process of being set up, with east London-based concept store LN-CC having already placed the first order.