Lebanon beats India in regional Woolmark Prize selections

Earlier this year, Rahul Mishra pulled off a coup by becoming the first Indian designer to win the International Woolmark Prize, following in the footsteps of Karl Lagerfeld and Yves Saint Laurent.

This year, however, Indian designers like Gaurav Jai Gupta of Akaaro and Zubair Kirmani lost out to their Lebanese competitor, Rayya Morcos of Bird On a Wire in the regional finals held in Mumbai last night.

The judging panel, which consisted of Vogue’s Priyanka Khanna along with Woolmark’s Peter Ackroyd, Business Of Fashion’s Imran Amed, Anthony Kendal of Mytheresa.com and Mishra, chose Marcos to represent the India & Middle East region at the finals in Beijing next March.

“More than ever, it’s clear that creativity can be found everywhere in the world and this year’s India & Middle East Woolmark Prize recognised designers from Lebanon & the UAE, providing a meaningful global platform for their creativity,” said Amed.

Morcos (and her menswear-winning contemporary, The Emperor 1688 from the UAE) will spend the next six months developing a capsule collection in Merino wool, which will be judged at the China finals.

Like Mishra, the winner will receive A$1,00,000 in prize money and have their collection stocked at leading global retailers like Harvey Nichols in the UK and Colette in Paris.

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