Is fashion fostering ethical practices? Do designers help with cultural and social sustainability? Do they challenge business-as-usual? Twyg is searching for designers who are concerned with these issues in order to spotlight their efforts during the annual Twyg Sustainable Fashion Awards 2021.
Twyg, a local not-for-profit organisation and online publication, launched its Sustainable Fashion Awards in 2019 to recognise and celebrate fashion designers who implement sustainable, circular, ethical and regenerative approaches to design.
"Designers are problem solvers, and right now, we urgently need problems solved. There has been a noticeable shift in how fashion thinks of itself with a realisation that its responsibility is far wider than making clothes," Twyg said.
Against the backdrop of the pandemic and its effects on the economy, the organisation said, "Twyg is more committed to supporting the growth of sustainable and circular designers and helping them reach consumers than ever before. In 2021, supporting local fashion is critical to job creation."
Nominations are now open and will close on 11 October 2021.
Awards categories for 2021 comprise the following:
• Student Award presented by Levi’s
• Accessory Award
• Innovative Design and Materials Award by Adidas
• Trans-seasonal Award presented by BMW i
• Nicholas Coutts Award
• Retail Award
• Influencer Award presented by Reebok
• CMT Award
• Textile Makers and Mills Award
• Changemaker Award presented by Country Road
Aside from the mentioned category sponsors, Country Road has come on board as headline sponsor, while long-standing partners Petco South Africa (the PET recycling company NPC), Fashion Revolution South Africa and SA Fashion Week will again support the awards.
At stake for winners
The overall winner of the Changemaker category will receive R100,000. The Changemaker Award will not be open for nominations. This category is supported by Country Road and will be awarded to the overall winner who will be drawn from the winners of all the categories and based on the judges scoring results. SA Fashion Week will also be giving the Changemaker Award winner a slot in a three-designer, shared show.
The design, textile, CMT and retail winners each receive an EcoStandard South Africa assessment of their brand.
The Influencer Award winner will receive a Reebok Package to the value of R40,000. This comprises of a R10,000 shopping voucher and the opportunity to partner with Reebok South Africa on sustainability-related campaigns in SS22, to the value of R30,000.
All winners and finalists will be listed in the soon-to-be-launched Twyg directory. "We have worked closely with EcoStandard South Africa to refine both the nomination and the judging process. A similar assessment process will be used to select brands for the Twyg directory," the organisation said.
Using the framework of the United Nations Sustainability Goal 12, Twyg aims to support fashion that cares about people and the planet. Twyg founder and director Jackie May comments, "We are very honoured to be in a position to celebrate the excellent work that has been achieved despite, and sometimes because of, the current circumstances," says Twyg founder and director Jackie May.Click here for information on the categories, criteria and how to apply.