Redress Design Award

Application Guidelines

APPLICATION GUIDELINES

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What is the Redress Design Award?

The Redress Design Award (formerly the EcoChic Design Award) is the world’s largest sustainable fashion design competition. Organised by Redress, the competition works to educate emerging fashion designers around the world about sustainable design theories and techniques in order to drive growth towards a circular fashion system. By putting sustainable design talent in the global spotlight, the competition creates a unique platform for passionate and talented fashion game-changers to transform the global fashion industry and rewards the best with career-changing prizes to maximise long-term impact.

Each competition cycle takes participants on an educational journey lasting several theory and design-packed months. We work to educate designers about fashion’s negative environmental impacts, whilst inspiring them to use the core sustainable design techniques of zero-waste, up-cycling and reconstruction to cut waste out of fashion. Through our lectures, Academies, online LEARN platform and educational work in partnership with more than 100 universities around the world, we provide young designers with the theory and techniques to help them understand the new circular economy and capitalise on its global potential for the fashion industry.

We then challenge participants to flex their creative genius and prove that they have the ingenuity and conviction to transform textile waste into stunning, scalable and commercially viable collections that will inspire and redress the world.

The 2018 competition cycle is open to fashion designers with less than three years’ professional fashion design experience and fashion students around the globe. A total of ten finalists will be selected to come to Hong Kong in early September 2018 to showcase their minimal waste collections at HKTDC Hong Kong’s Fashion Week CENTRESTAGE where career-changing prizes will be awarded.

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WHO CAN APPLY?

Applicants who meet all of the following criteria may apply:

  • Aged 18 years or over as of application closing date of 13 March 2018
  • Hold a valid ID/passport/visa/residence permit in country of residence
  • Having less than three years’ professional fashion design experience or are a fashion student in any year at an educational institution at the time of application 
  • Applying as an individual (group applications are not permitted)

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Which region will I represent?

For the purposes of judging, all applicants will be split into two regions according to their place of residence at the time of application.

The locations for region 1 are as follows:

Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Cyprus, Georgia, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Macao Special Administrative Region, Mainland China, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, State of Palestine, Syrian Arab Republic, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Yemen

The locations for region 2 are as follows:

Åland Islands, Albania, Algeria, American Samoa, Andorra, Angola, Anguilla, Antarctica, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bermuda, Bolivia, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Bouvet Island, Brazil, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde), Cayman Islands, Central African Republic, Chad, Channel Islands, Chile, Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling Islands), Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Côte d'Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Curaçao, Czechia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Falkland Islands, Faroe Islands, Fiji, Finland, France, French Guiana, French Polynesia, French Southern Territories, Gabon, Gambia, Germany, Ghana, Gibraltar, Greece, Greenland, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guam, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Heard Island and McDonald Islands, Holy See, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati, Kosovo, Latvia, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Martinique, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mayotte, Mexico, Micronesia, Monaco, Montenegro, Montserrat, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Niue, Norfolk Island, Northern Mariana Islands, Norway, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Pitcairn, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Republic of Moldova, Réunion, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Helena, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Sint Maarten, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, South Sudan, Spain, Sudan, Suriname, Svalbard and Jan Mayen, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Tokelau, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turks and Caicos, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United Republic of Tanzania, United States Minor Outlying Islands, United States of America, United States Virgin Islands, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Vatican City, Venezuela, Wallis and Futuna Islands, Western Sahara, Zambia, Zimbabwe

See ‘Reaching the semi-final and final rounds’ section for more information about the regional judging process.

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What is the competition design brief

Do you have what it takes to rethink fashion?

You are tasked to create a sustainable collection to transform how contemporary, fashion-loving, confident women dress. Your designs must inspire The R Collective’s customers - who are optimistic trailblazers ranging from entrepreneurs and business leaders, to passionate change-makers in their own right. Your collection should create a new relationship to fashion that unites an appreciation of style with a deeper aspiration for positive change for the planet.  

All designs must show evidence of

  • Re-inventing fashion by using one or more of the sustainable design techniques of zero-waste, up-cycling and reconstruction
  • Reclaiming textile ‘waste’ in unexpected ways
  • Reflecting opportunities for reproducibility, scalability and marketability
  • Re-imagining sustainable design strategies and innovations to improve the garment’s lifecycle

To win, you must

  • Create three ready-to-wear outfit sketches (complete outfits not necessary at this stage) for your application for construction using textile waste. If you are successful in becoming one of the ten finalists, you must then make these three ready-to-wear sketches into complete outfits, together with an additional complete ready-to-wear outfit and one showpiece for the grand final fashion show.
  • Impress the judges. For the Open Application and Semi-Final judging, your designs will be scored in three categories 1) Creativity and originality, 2) Sustainability and 3) Marketability - based on the creative design brief. For the grand final judging, an additional category of Workmanship will be added when the judges view your collection in person. During the grand final trip you will also be observed in order to assess your understanding and application of sustainable design strategies and processes during the various challenges.

The competition’s design techniques and textile requirements:

Applicants must use one or more of the three sustainable design techniques detailed below throughout their collection. In addition, applicants can combine the techniques within any of their garments.

Applicants must source 100% textile waste for use in their collection.

ZERO-WASTE DESIGNS

Definition: A design technique that eliminates textile waste at the design stage.

Technique: Any zero-waste design technique such as, zero-waste pattern cutting, draping, smocking, plaiting and fully fashioned knitting are permitted.

Textile selection: Textile waste must be used for zero-waste designs.

Remember: A photo and information about the type and source of the textile waste used must be submitted. If zero-waste pattern cutting or draping techniques are used, the pattern(s) and the exact measurements of the textile(s) used must be included.

The following types of textile waste may be used:

  • Textile swatches - leftover textile samples from production
  • Cut-and-sew textiles - textile scraps generated during garment manufacturing
  • End-of-rolls - factory surplus waste leftover from garment manufacturing
  • Sampling yardage - factory surplus waste leftover from textile sample manufacturing
  • Damaged textiles – unused textiles that have been damaged, for example with colour or print defects
  • Unsold clothing - clothing waste (finished or unfinished) that has not been sold
  • Clothing samples - part-finished or finished clothing samples from the design and production of clothing, which have not be worn by consumers
  • Secondhand clothing – any clothing or fashion accessories that have been owned and then discarded by consumers (both used and unused)
  • Secondhand textiles – any finished non-clothing textiles (such as curtains, bedding etc) that have been owned and then discarded by consumers (both used and unused)
  • A combination of the above is permitted

Learn more about zero-waste: www.redressdesignaward.com/learn/zero-waste

UP-CYCLING DESIGNS

Definition: Up-cycling is the transformation of materials into products of equal or higher quality. In fashion, this means prolonging the life of waste textiles through creativity.

At Redress we have further categorised waste materials used in up-cycling to be textiles that have never been made into any garment form or textiles from non-clothing products. We catagorise the reuse of material waste that is in garment form as reconstruction (a separate guide can be found on reconstruction below).

Technique: Any up-cycling technique such as patchworking, draping, interlacing, layering and fusing are permitted.

Textile selection: Textile waste must be used for up-cycled designs.

Remember: A photo and information about the type and source of the textile waste used must be submitted.

The following types of textile waste may be used:

  • Textile swatches - leftover textile samples from production
  • Cut-and-sew textiles - textile scraps generated during garment manufacturing
  • End-of-rolls - factory surplus waste leftover from garment manufacturing
  • Sampling yardage - factory surplus waste leftover from textile sample manufacturing
  • Damaged textiles – unused textiles that have been damaged, for example with colour or print defects
  • Secondhand textiles – any finished non-clothing textiles (such as curtains, bedding etc) that have been owned and then discarded by consumers (both used and unused).
  • A combination of the above is permitted

Learn more about up-cycling: www.redressdesignaward.com/learn/up-cycling

RECONSTRUCTION DESIGNS

Definition: Reconstruction is a form of up-cycling and is the process of making new clothes from waste formed of previously worn garments or preformed finished clothing products. This process involves first deconstructing garments and then reconstructing the waste materials into new designs.

Technique: Any reconstruction techniques such as deconstructing, shredding, quilting, patchworking and draping are permitted.

Textile selection: Textile waste must be used for reconstructed designs.

Remember: A photo and information about the type and source of the textile waste used must be submitted.

The following types of textile waste may be used:

  • Unsold clothing - clothing waste (finished or unfinished) that has not been sold
  • Clothing samples - part-finished or finished clothing samples from the design and production of clothing, which have not be worn by consumers.
  • Secondhand clothing – any clothing or fashion accessories that have been owned and then discarded by consumers (both used and unused)
  • A combination of the above is permitted

Learn more about reconstruction: www.redressdesignaward.com/learn/reconstruction

Apply now

Applicants must fill in online application form here by 13 March 2018: 

Below you will find a summary of the open application design requirements.

The following information should be used as a guide to top line requirements only, with more detailed information expected from applicants as outlined in the application form.

DESIGN REQUIREMENTS

  • One mood board illustrating the theme, inspiration and colour of the entire competition collection.
  • Three ready-to-wear outfit illustrations with technical drawings (front and back) based on one or more sustainable design techniques zero-waste, up-cycling and reconstruction. No complete outfits are required to be made at the open application stage. All submitted artwork must be original creations designed by the applicant and must not have been previously shown in public.
    An outfit must be made up of one or more pieces that cover a model's upper and lower body and can include garments such as tops, bottoms, dresses, jackets and coats. Shoes and accessories are not required.
  • Information about textile waste selection including the type of fibre, type of textile and source. All designs must use textile waste. Applicants are required to provide clear photos of the original textiles before any cutting or alteration, in order to show that such textiles are available for use.
    No changes to artworks or textile selections are permitted after submission.
  • Five brief written statements about the collection, sustainable design strategies and the designer's aspirations.

When submitting the application:

  • ALL questions must be filled out in English or Chinese. No other languages will be accepted.
  • All artwork must be original creations designed by the applicant themselves, and must not have been previously shown in the public domain.
  • Each photo submitted as part of your application must have a file size must of less than 1MB and in .jpg or .png format (we recommend the photos’ pixels per inch (ppi) should not exceed 72 ppi). 
  • The deadline for applications Tuesday 13 March 2018 at 11:59pm (local time in the designers’ region). Please note that you will NOT be able to amend your application including your artwork and textile waste selections once submitted. Any applications received after this time may not be accepted.
  • After submitting the application, designers will receive an email confirmation.

Following submission, the Redress team may contact applicants for further information, such as verification of professional experience and eligibility. Applicants can be disqualified by Redress at our discretion at any time for failing to meet the ‘Terms and Conditions of Entry’ and any other reasons determined by Redress.

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Reaching the semi-final and final rounds

After the competition deadline of 13 March 2018, regional judging panels will select the top 15 applicants from region 1, and the top 15 applications from region 2 to go through to the semi-final round.

The Redress team will notify the 30 semi-finalists of their success individually before public announcement. Among the 30 semi-finalists, from the region 1 pool, there will be one guaranteed spot for a Hong Kong applicant. Semi-finalists will be publicly announced on the www.redressdesignaward.com website on 17 April 2018.

All 30 semi-finalists will win educational and career-enhancing prizes, details of which can be found here:

Following the semi-finalists announcement, the international judging panel will then assess and further shortlist the 30 applications. As part of this process, semi-finalists are required to prepare a one-minute video for the judges (e.g. to introduce yourself, your collection etc.) Please note, this video may be used in our documentary TV series ‘Frontline Fashion III’ and for marketing purposes. In addition, semi-finalists are required to have a phone or Skype interview with the Redress team.

After the international judges’ assessment, the Redress team will directly notify the ten finalists, consisting of five finalists from region 1 and five finalists from region 2, who will be publicly announced on the www.redressdesignaward.com website on 15 May 2018. Among the 10 finalists, there will be one guaranteed spot for a Hong Kong applicant.

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Preparing for the Grand Final

The ten finalists will be briefed further about the final design requirements upon their notification of success. However, here is a brief summary:

FINAL DESIGN REQUIREMENTS

Finalists of the Redress Design Award 2018 will present a five outfit sustainable collection formed of:

Three ready-to-wear outfits based on the designer’s online application: Finalists will turn their three illustrations submitted in their application into complete outfits. No changes to artworks or textile selections are permitted.

One additional ready-to-wear outfit: Finalists will create one additional outfit based on the mood board submitted in their application.

One showpiece outfit: Finalists will also create one showpiece outfit based on the mood board submitted in their application.

The competition design brief requirements for finalists additional two outfits (both the ready-to-wear and show piece outfits) are the same as for the initial three in the application. This means that finalist’s entire five outfit collection must:

  • Be created using one or more of the sustainable design techniques zero-waste, up-cycling and reconstruction.
  • Be made using textile waste.
  • Be original creations by the finalist (both artwork and outfits) and not have been seen in public previously.
  • Have been made and sewn by the finalist themselves.

Prior to announcement of finalists and on the www.redressdesignaward.com, all ten finalists are required to sign an agreement with Redress stating that they agree to the dates, schedules and final terms. In brief, this agreement will require applicants to confirm that they are able to:

  • Visit Hong Kong for approximately 2 weeks in late August/ early September 2018 (exact dates TBC) to attend the grand final fashion show, seminars, workshops and other events organised by Redress (travel and accommodation costs covered by Redress).
  • Send two work-in-progress reports for their competition collections with deadlines of 24 May and 28 June 2018. This is to ensure that the designer’s competition collection is produced in a timely manner and to a high quality and standard. These work-in-progress reports will not be used for judging purposes.
  • Send their completed competition collection to Hong Kong by 19 July 2018 (courier costs will be covered by Redress).
  • Accept the prize schedules and be available to fulfil the terms of the prize in the event that they win.
  • Agree to be filmed throughout the experience for inclusion in Redress’ documentary TV series, Frontline Fashion.   

Finalists can be disqualified by Redress at our final discretion at any time for failing to meet the terms in the signed agreement and any other reasons as determined by Redress.

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KEY DATES

Open Application 

8 January 2018 Launch of the online open application
13 March 2018 Application deadline (11:59pm local time)
17 April 2018 30 semi-finalists announced on www.redressdesignaward.com

Semi-final 

15 May 2018 Ten finalists announced on www.redressdesignaward.com

Final 

24 May 2018 Deadline for finalists’ online submission of first work-in-progress report
28 June 2018 Deadline for finalists’ online submission of second work-in-progress report
19 July 2018 Deadline for finalists to send their completed competition collection to Hong Kong
Late Aug/ Early September 2018* Finalists arrive in Hong Kong and attend multiple activities
Early September 2018* Grand Final fashion show and winners announced
Early September 2018* Finalists depart Hong Kong
October-December 2018 Touring international exhibition
October 2018 onwards Winners claim their prizes
January 2019* Frontline Fashion III airs

* Exact dates TBC

Please note that all dates and deadlines are subject to change at Redress’ discretion. 

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