Ethical Fashion Forum Announces 2011 USA Innovation Award Winners

carrie parry photo

2011 USA Innovation Award Winner Carrie Parry. Photo: Carrie Parry

For the first time, the UK-based Ethical Fashion Forum (EFF) is bringing their annual sustainable fashion Innovation Award to the United States. On September 12, the winning designers will show their spring 2012 collections at Nolcha Fashion Week at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York.

Past recipients include notable ethical fashion designers such as Christopher Raeburn and Ada Zanditon, proving that EFF's selections are the New Fashion Kids on the Block to watch:

afia photo

Photo: Afia

We are delighted to see that two out of three winners we've covered here before on TreeHugger. EFF sums up the criteria for winning, below.

Winners have been selected for demonstrating progressive attitudes towards social and environmental sustainability alongside their innovative approach to design - communicating that fashion and fairness are no longer mutually exclusive concepts.

afia launch party

Afia founder Meghan Sebold. Photo: Emma Grady

First up: Afia. Designer Meaghan Sebold has her patterns made Patterns made in Chicago and New York's garment district, sources textiles from small vendors, then works with the Dzidefo Women's Cooperative in the village of Kpando, Ghana, who cut and sew the garments. EFF says:

By translating Ghana's traditional textiles to American styles, Afia connects their craft and industry to the consumer in an "urban indigenous" style.

innovation award usa photo

Photo: Design by Soham Dave

New York-based Soham Dave wins for their use of natural, biodegradable, and hand-crafted materials. According to EFF:

They support female artisans to become entrepreneurs and act as a bridge between artisan and final customer. Soham Dave looks to create harmony between urban silhouettes and eco-friendly processes.

carrie parry photo

Photo: Carrie Parry

Designer Carrie Parry, a graduate of the Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts in London, works with artisans from Eastern India -- where she sources silk -- to the Indian Himalayas. And as EFF says, "Carrie Parry achieves a timeless style rooted in sustainability and wearability." We couldn't agree more.

In addition to showing at Nolcha Fashion Week in New York, winners are awarded one year at the Bel Esprit Showroom International, as well as access to EFF's Source Intelligence Magazine and a listing in their Source Database.

Like this post? Follow Emma Grady, an award-winning fashion writer and the founder and editor of Past Fashion Future, on Facebook and Twitter.
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