In case you missed it, the Vogue Fashion Prize is back, and it’s bigger than ever before. Since its announcement on October 29, the 2020 Vogue Fashion Prize, powered by NEOM, has taken the Arab world by storm. From aspiring and established designers including Mohammed Ashi and Nicolas Jebran, to industry professionals such as stylists Yasmine Eissa and Aram Kabbani, the empowering event has got everyone talking. The Middle Eastern entertainment industry has also shown its support toward the Fashion Prize, as celebrities Dorra Zarrouk, Lojain Omran, Raya Abirached, Kinda Alloush, Hend Sabri, Salma Abu Deif and Tara Emad took to social media to share the announcement and celebrate the prize’s aim to nurture regional talent.
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Here, we look at what makes the 2020 edition of Vogue Fashion Prize so special:
A prize unlike any other
This year’s Fashion Prize will award the winning designers substantial financial grants, retail opportunities, editorial/press, marketing, and mentorship, collectively representing nearly US $500,000 in value. The winning designer will receive a placement on Net-a-Porter. What’s more, all 2020 finalists will present their collections at an exclusive Fashion Prize showroom during Paris fashion week in March 2021.
Record number of applications
This year has seen applications from more than 200 (and counting) aspiring designers – breaking the record of the previous Fashion Prize editions. While the competition may be intense, if you have what it takes to be the Arab world’s next star designer, make sure to apply via the Fashion Prize site no later than November 18. Nominees will be revealed in late November, and winners will be announced at the grand Fashion Prize event in December.
Focus on sustainability
More than anything, sustainability is now a necessity in everything we do. After becoming one of the first Vogues to bring on a sustainability editor (Livia Firth), who is also a Fashion Prize jury member, this partnership with NEOM makes our commitment to the cause that much more significant. NEOM is a giga-project located in the northwest of Saudi Arabia with a particular emphasis on fostering innovation and sustainability in the fashion sector. Together, we aim to unearth the next generation of innovative designers and launch businesses that stand the test of time and have sustainability at their core.
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An inspiring jury
The jury of the 2020 Vogue Fashion Prize comprises some of the industry’s most talented and successful professionals, who know first-hand what it takes to break through in the fashion world. It includes Manuel Arnaut, editor-in-chief, Vogue Arabia; Katie Trotter, fashion director, Vogue Arabia; Angelica Cheung, editor-in-chief, Vogue China; HH Princess Noura bint Faisal Al Saud, Fashion Commission, Saudi Ministry of Culture; Livia Firth, founder, Eco-Age and sustainability editor-at-large, Vogue Arabia; Amina Muaddi, founder and creative director, Amina Muaddi; Mohammed Ashi, founder and creative director, Ashi Studio; Farida Khelfa, international fashion model and filmmaker; fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier; and Nisreen Shocair, CEO Middle East, Yoox Net-a-Porter.
With a jury like this, not only does the Fashion Prize offer a chance for designers to take their talent to their world, but also a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have their work critiqued by the judges.
How to apply?
Since 2015, hundreds of designers from nearly 20 countries across the Arab world have applied to the Fashion Prize. Applications for the 2020 Vogue Fashion Prize are open now at fashionprize.com. Join us on the journey on social media via #VogueFashionPrize and #DiscoverNEOM
• You are over the age of 21 and currently residing in, or originally from, an Arab country* or have your business principally based in the Arab world;
• You have been in business for a minimum of 2 years and a maximum of 8, and produced a minimum of 2 full collections during this time;
• Your collection consists of womenswear (ready-to-wear or couture), accessories, jewelry, or menswear;
• You have international or regional stockists and/or sell direct to consumer;
• You’re able to demonstrate support from regional and/or international media; and
• You’ve never won the award before.
• Note: You can apply up to 5 times. Previous finalists may also apply.
*The Arab world includes: Algeria, Bahrain, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Mauritania, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. The Arab diaspora is also eligible.