Swarovski Collective award goes to Faustine Steinmetz
Crystal manufacturer Swarovski has announced that French designer Faustine Steinmetz is the winner of this year’s Swarovski Collective prize for emerging designers. The Swarovski Collective programme was set up in 1999 by Nadja Swarovski, and three years ago it first awarded a prize " recognising talent, innovation and craftsmanship in designers."
Faustine Steinmetz succeeds Rosie Assoulin as prize winner, earning herself a €25,000 cheque in addition to the financial backing and support provided by Swarovski in the course of the past year. Steinmetz was picked from a short-list of eleven labels, including Emilia Wickstead and Sadie Williams from the UK, US labels Rosie Assoulin, Tome and Creatures of the Wind, Finnish label Aalto, Danish designer Anne Sofie Madsen, Arthur Arbesser and Vivetta from Milan, and Paris-based designer Wanda Nylon.
The jury assessed the two most recent collections, SS 2017 and AW 2017-18, and Faustine Steinmetz was appreciated for her ground-breaking work on denim, especially for her recycled denim decorated with Swarovski crystals, her gem-encrusted Moroccan-style slippers and her dresses entirely swathed in crystals. According to Nadja Swarovski, Steinmetz was remarkable for her "ethical, sustainable approach, her feel for innovation and the stunning use of crystal in her collections, marking her out as a unique talent and a benchmark for the fashion industry."
Steinmetz has been based in London since 2009 and, besides the Swarovski sponsorship, since 2014 she has also been supported in the development of her collections by the British Fashion Council's New-Gen initiative in favour of emerging designers.
Faustine Steinmetz studied fashion at the Atelier Chardon-Savart school in Paris, before graduating from London's Central Saint Martins. She is renowned for her artisanal manufacturing techniques - some of her garments are hand-made by traditional weavers and pension-age women - and for the eco-responsible positioning of her eponymous label, especially active in denim recycling.
She was a finalist of the LVMH Prize in 2015 and in 2016 she won the Woolmark Prize. Her collections are available at Isetan in Japan, at the LN-CC concept store in London and at Opening Ceremony. In 2016 Steinmetz signed a capsule collection in collaboration with Cheap Monday.
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