(London) – Huishan Zhang is the winner of the 2013 Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize. The award was bestowed to the designer tonight at The Dorchester after a catwalk show featuring the four shortlisted designers of the prize. Huishan Zhang was presented with an endowment of £25,000 from Dorchester Collection’s chief executive officer Christopher Cowdray, along with an engraved Baccarat crystal trophy and a stay at a Dorchester Collection property, and in a new element launched this year, the prospect of one-to-one mentoring from a selection of the judges.
The esteemed judges of the 2013 Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize present at the final included Frederic Aranda, fashion and portrait photographer; Lorenz Baumer, jewellery designer; Derek Blasberg, best-selling author and fashion writer; Fabia Di Drusco, features editor of L’Uomo Vogue; Jean-Pierre Greff, director of Geneva’s School of Art and Design; Daniella Helayel, founder of Issa; Stephen Jones, milliner; Nicholas Oakwell, couture designer; Margherita Perico, personal stylist, fashion consultant, writer and international speaker; Rupert Sanderson, shoe designer; and Stephen Webster, jewellery designer.
The grand final was an opportunity for the talented shortlisted designers – Barbara Casasola, Fyodor Golan, Emilia Wickstead and Huishan Zhang – to present their designs at a catwalk show to the assembled audience of judges and international VIP guests and media. After deliberation, the judges agreed that the collection displayed by Huishan Zhang best evoked the spirit of individuality, luxury, style, innovation and craftsmanship, which epitomise Dorchester Collection’s iconic hotels.
“We have been truly inspired and impressed by the creativity and craftmanship displayed by our talented shortlisted designers. Dorchester Collection has a long standing illustrious association with fashion and in launching its Fashion Prize became the first luxury hotel company to bestow such a prestigious award. We are delighted to help a burgeoning young brand at this critical time of its growth whilst strengthening Dorchester Collection’s ties to the fashion world. Huishan Zhang will undoubtedly have a thriving career, as have the previous winners,” said Christopher Cowdray, Dorchester Collection’s chief executive officer.
“I was thrilled to be back on the judging panel of the Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize. What I love about this award is both meeting fresh talent from around the world and perhaps changing the life of a designer. But it wasn’t easy. We had the fortunate problem of being spoiled with good choices. Congratulations to Huishan Zhang!” said judge Derek Blasberg.
Commenting on the prize, Huishan Zhang said: “This is a true encouragement and I’m thrilled with all the support I have received. The Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize means the world to me and it will help me move forward and better structure my next collection. This is a pivotal point in my career.”
Carol Joy London created the make-up look for the models at the final. After the winner’s announcement, VIP guests, designers and models toasted the winner with Laurent-Perrier champagne at a drinks reception in The Dorchester’s Ballroom.