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The Dubai Design & Fashion Council Announces the International Woolmark Prize Regional Nominees

The highly anticipated India and Middle East regional nominees for The International Woolmark Prize (IWP) have been announced today, courtesy of the Dubai Design & Fashion Council (DDFC). The announcement also notably marks the DDFC’s official support of the renowned competition. Hailing from the Middle East, in the womenswear category, are Taller Marmo (UAE), Bleach (UAE), Bashar Assaf (Lebanon), and Mira Hayek (Lebanon); the brands will compete amongst each other along with nominees Akaaro (India), Sania Maskatiya (Pakistan), Misha Lakhani (Pakistan), and Nachiket Barve (India).

The IWP jury (to be confirmed) will mentor the selected finalists and the IWP will offer an AED/SAR 150,000 financial contribution (US $40,800) to each finalist, which will go towards his/her next collection.

On the topic of the launch of the official partnership with the IWP, Nez Gebreel, CEO of the Dubai Design & Fashion Council and jury member of the—DDFC Fashion Prize, commented, “We are here to seize global opportunities to position Dubai as an international hub for design […] partnering with the International Woolmark Prize is a great opportunity for us to further support and mentor these upcoming designers to realize their potential and achieve their dreams. […] We will be enhancing Dubai’s already strong cultural offering and helping promote and attract interest on a global scale.”

The nominees will present sketches of a Merino wool capsule collection comprising six outfits, with one look to be produced. A panel of regional and international industry jurists will then judge the collections and the winner will be revealed on July 22nd in Dubai. Meanwhile, other regional award ceremonies will be held in Shanghai, Sydney, Antwerp, New York, and London. Stuart McCullough, Managing Director of The Woolmark Company, said, “It is an honor to be undertaking the first International Woolmark Prize event in the UAE […] We look forward to working together [with the DDFC] to highlight the wonderful talents in this region and put them alongside the best from around the world at the finals to be held in 2016 in New York (womenswear) and Florence (menswear).”

The winners of both the menswear and womenswear finals will receive a further AED/SAR 300,000 (US $81,673) towards fabric sourcing and marketing their respective collections. Additionally, both winners will have their collections commercialized via international retail partners including Harvey Nichols (UK), Joyce (China), Saks Fifth Avenue (US), 10 Corso Como (Italy and Shanghai), David Jones (Australia),, and

For news on the IWP regional menswear nominees, visit

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