Digital fashion maven Mary Katrantzou wins Swiss Textile Award


Mary Katrantzou SS11 (image: London Fashion Week/’s ‘thank you for the love’ tweet from Mary Katrantzou reminds me to wax lyrical about her deserved recent win of the prestigious, E100k Swiss Textiles Award. She may have missed out on the Dorchester Fashion Prize to Thomas Tait a few weeks back, but November 4 saw the London-based 27-year old in Zurich and stepping up the podium to collect her gong from last year’s winner, Alexander Wang.

Katrantzou has rocketed up the style charts since her AW08 collection, presented as part of the Central St Martins MA show, wowed the fashion cognoscenti and helped galvanise a vogue for high octane, colour-saturated digital prints. Never sitting still, Katrantzou has continued to push the boundaries of digital print, adding textural layering and embellishments which ensure that derivative designs will only ever be a pale imitation of her work.

I am a huge fan of Katrantzou’s celebratory, womanly designs, her approach is highly individual, with a splash of irreverence, and she comes across as so real and in touch with what her women want from her. Always an LFW highlight, her SS11 was a stellar surreallist collection of exxagerated, structured hourglass silhouettes, including outre lampshade-inspired mini-crinis, featuring prints of interiors and buildings in a washed out, feminine hues – a perfect counterbalance.

At a critical point in the evolution of her business, the Swiss Textile Award is a major accolade which will no doubt attract the interest of style-hungry consumers and international investment alike, adding critical value to the already significant cash injection which support Katrantzou’s plans to take her business stratospheric, but always on her own creative terms.         


Mary Katrantzou, Michael Van Der Ham and Richard Nicoll at Topshop NewGen venue (source: Topshop podcasts)


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