London's Paolina Russo wins Zalando Visionary Award, to show at CFW
A London-based label has won the first Zalando Visionary Award in partnership with Copenhagen Fashion Week (CFW) with Paolina Russo scooping the prize.
It will present its collection at CFW in August after demonstrating its “dedication to creativity and innovation through collections that combine artisan techniques with industrialised manufacturing, bridging the gap between heritage craftsmanship and technology”.
The award celebrates the “makers of the future and enables designers to showcase their dedication to creativity, innovation and positive social impact”.
The winning brand was founded in 2021 by Paolina Russo and Lucile Guilmard and has a big focus on knitwear with “an aim to lead the craft revival of tomorrow”.
Zalando said the label offers “vibrant and versatile knitwear collections” and impressed the judging panel by its “approach to its collaborative manufacturing network”.
We’re told that “Paolina Russo treats its supply chain as creative partners: through visiting manufacturers and working face to face on the factory floor, the founders have the ability to learn from their supply chain’s processes and expertise to create garments that change the perception of what traditional knitwear can be. In addition, the brand has demonstrated a strong focus on its environmental impact by ensuring ethical sourcing, the use of natural, singular fibres and partnering with certified manufacturers”.
Co-founder Russo said that winning the award “encourages us to keep building a sustainable brand and celebrates an alternative way of working that doesn't contribute to the flaws of the fashion industry”.
The jury included senior representatives from Zalando and CFW, as well as Creative and Buying Director at Highsnobiety Herbert Hofmann and fashion stylist Leah Abbott.
Importantly, as well as the recognition and the chance to show at CFW as part of the official show schedule, the winning brand receives a prize of €50,000. Zalando will provide monetary support for show production too.
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