Sophie Theallet named US finalist for Woolmark PrizeTuesday, 10 July 2012
Theallet faced stiff competition from Prabal Garung, Naeem Khan and Kaufman Franco before winning the US regional spot, which has earned her $50,000 as her prize.
The French-born designer worked at Jean Paul Gaultier and Azzedine Alaia, before setting up her own label in 2007, and is now in the running for the top prize, a further 100,000 Australian dollars to assist in underwriting her next fashion show, and the opportunity for her clothes to be stocked in Harvey Nichols, US department store Bergdorf Goodman, Italy's 10 Corso Como and David Jones in Australia.
The Woolmark prize supported by the Australian Wool Industry, was reintroduced this year, and it is hoped that the new award will not only showcase the diversity of wool, but will also follow in the footsteps of its other prestigious fashion awards including the International Wool Secretariat design award of the 1950s, which founded two relatively unknown designers of the time, Yves Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld.
British designers J.W. Anderson and James Long are up against 17 other designers from across Europe and will be judged by Alber Elbaz, artistic director of the Lanvin House, Giles Deacon, and Dsquare2 designers Dean and Dan Caten.
The European, Chinese, and Indian finalists will be announced in the coming days, with the Australian finalist to be announced on Monday.