IMG announces 2021 Finalists of the Australian Fashion Laureate

Courtesy: IMG

SYDNEY, 5 October 2021

IMG today announced the finalists of the 2021Australian Fashion Laureate, honouring the outstanding achievements of Australian fashion’s leaders and innovators. Winners will be announced on 30 November 2021 at a celebratory event in Sydney.

The Australian Fashion Laureate awards recognise accomplishments across categories including Designer of the YearEmerging Designer of the YearSustainable Innovation and People’s Choice. New award categories in 2021 include Indigenous Designer of the Year, to celebrate Australia’s First Nations designers, and the Carla Zampatti Award for Excellence in Leadership, to recognise leaders who have made outstanding contributions to advancing the position of women in the Australian fashion industry; the former was created in close consultation with leading First Nations fashion figures, whereas the latter will debut in tribute to the late fashion icon Carla Zampatti AC. The industry’s pinnacle honour, the Australian Fashion Laureate Lifetime Achievement Award, celebrates a longstanding and meaningful impact on the Australian fashion industry.

IMG is pleased to share the complete list of finalists across 2021 award categories:

Designer of the Year

  • Anna Plunket and Luke Sales, Romance Was Born
  • Christopher Esber
  • Edwina Forest and Adrian Norris, Aje
  • Sophie Holt, Oroton

Emerging Designer of the Year, presented by Shopify Plus

  • Jordan Dalah
  • Jordan Gogos, Iordanes Spyridon Gogos
  • Julie Shaw, MAARA Collective
  • Richard Jarman, COMMAS

Sustainable Innovation of the Year, presented by GlamCorner

  • Emma Jarman and Richard Jarman, COMMAS
  • James Bartle, Outland Denim
  • Kit Willow, KITX
  • Mary-Lou Ryan and Deborah Sams, bassike

Indigenous Designer of the Year

  • Denni Francisco, Ngali
  • Grace Lillian Lee
  • Julie Shaw, MAARA Collective
  • Lillardia Briggs-Houston, Ngarru Miimi

“The Australian Fashion Laureate celebrates the ingenuity of Australian fashion’s top designers and creators,” said Natalie Xenita, Vice President-Managing Director of IMG’s fashion events and properties, Asia-Pacific. “This year’s nominees reflect the creative excellence and diverse voices shaping our industry and its future.”

Australian Fashion Laureate recipients are chosen by Australian Fashion Industry Alumni, a panel of industry leaders, including media, buyers, communications professionals, creatives and designers.

The People’s Choice Award gives the public the opportunity to vote for their favourite Australian fashion designers among finalists selected by IMG and Afterpay. Voting is now open and will continue through 7 November 2021; please visit:  

The Australian Fashion Laureate is an IMG event supported by the NSW Government through Destination New South Wales (DNSW). The event will adhere to all government and official NSW health guidelines.

Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney, Stuart Ayres, said: “The NSW Government is proud to support the development, innovation and excellence of Australia’s fashion designers, many of whom found their start here in Sydney by showcasing at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week. Sydney is the hub of creative industries in the Asia-Pacific and events like the Australian Fashion Laureate bring together the very best in the business, in the Harbour City, to celebrate joint success and forge exciting new opportunities.”

In addition to DNSW, the Australian Fashion Laureate is made possible through the support of Afterpay, Shopify Plus and GlamCorner.

The digital home for the Australian Fashion Laureate is and @ausfashionweek across Instagram and Facebook and @ausfw on Twitter, where fans may follow along through official hashtag, #AustralianFashionLaureate.

Daniel Quintanilla

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