As the fashion industry goes back to its roots, awards like International Woolmark Prize become key in promoting sustainable fashion. This acclaimed award allows future fashion designers and innovators to be recognised on a global platform on the basis of their design excellence. In 2014, Rahul Mishra was the first Indian designer to bag this prestigious award. So, we were elated to know that Bodice designer Ruchika Sachdeva is the winner of womenswear 2017/2018 International Woolmark Prize.
The competition was judged by industry’s most respected people such as Vogue Italia Editor-in-Chief Emanuele Farneti, womenswear designer Phillip Lim, model and actress Amber Valletta and editor of Harper’s Bazaar India Nonita Kalra, to name a few. Along with Ruchika, British designer Matthew Miller was the winner of menswear 2017/2018 International Woolmark Prize and Christopher Bevans of DYNE was the winner of Innovation Award.
Bodice stood out for the essence it holds true to as a brand. Being conscious of the very issue that is hampering the industry—wastage in fashion—Ruchika stresses a lot on recycling, a concept inspired by her grandmother who used to upcycle saris into quilts. The way she worked with Australian Merino wool was appreciable as well. She collaborated with hand weavers by encouraging them to take a modern approach combined with traditional techniques. She also used colours from natural sources called Bio-Dye from Sawantwadi, central India. With such an exceptional work done on the minutest details, this collection ticked all the boxes.
It’s inspiring to see an Indian recognised on such an acclaimed, international platform. Also, the fact that these designers are putting India on the map for all the right reasons.