This week, the British Fashion Council/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund prize was awarded to Erdem Moralioglu. Erdem is the first to receive the award, which was launched in 2010 to capitalize on the momentum gained this year and last by London Fashion Week. That momentum was mostly due to Burberry returning to show in London, and the 25th Anniversary of London Fashion Week, which attracted a slew of boldface designers to revisit their home turf.
The young designer, a graduate of the Royal College of Art, must be elated not only to have won 200,000 pounds (about $301,000), but also to have beat out Christopher Kane, Clements Ribeiro, E. Tautz, Marios Schwab, Nicholas Kirkwood, and Richard Nicoll – all impressive designers.
With work characterized by color and print, Erdem’s win is well deserved, and I can’t wait to see what beautiful silk and satin prints the designer comes up with next. Well on his way to being the next Dries Van Noten, Erdem spent a year working with Diane von Furstenberg before winning the Fashion Fringe award in 2005, and then hit it big when Barney’s Fashion Director Julie Gilhart wore one of his dresses to the Met Ball.
Money aside, the award also comes with a mentoring program, which will hopefully help expand the designer’s business to a global scale. While I would have been equally excited to see Marios Schwab or Nicholas Kirkwood win, Erdem seems on the cusp of hitting it big, and this money and mentorship will hopefully be just the push he needs to be 2010’s version of Jason Wu.