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These are the finalists for the Twyg Sustainable Fashion Awards 2023

At the forefront of sustainable-fashion advocacy, Twyg’s annual Sustainable Fashion Awards strive to celebrate and support designers, creators, thought leaders and innovators who use best practices to help change fashion.

After thoughtful consideration by their panel of esteemed judges – Nigerian entrepreneur and founder of Lagos Fashion Week Omoyemi Akerele, Swiss creative consultant, writer and editor Mimma Viglezio, CEO of textile startup Rewoven Esethu Cenga, head of the department for design studies at Tshwane University of Technology Dr Sipho Mbatha, fashion magazine stylist, director and editor Sharon Armstrong, and Tanzanian-born curator and founder of Industrie Africa Nisha Kanabar – 31 finalists have been selected from the pool of outstanding candidates.

The 2023 category winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on 23 November 2023 in Cape Town.

Here are the finalists of the 2023 Twyg Sustainable Fashion Awards:

Emerging Designer Award, presented by SKYY Vodka and Pantone Sundays

This award is given to a current student or young emerging designer who is challenging fashion’s status quo, and engaging with environmental and social responsibilities in a playful and creative way.

  • Bash Studios
  • Khumo
  • VNTU

Accessories Award

In recognition of the craftsmanship of sustainable accessories, this award is given to a brand or designer who implements ethical labour practices, limits the use of toxic chemicals and utilises sustainable materials.

  • Orange Juice Spaces
  • Plasticity
  • Verse

Footwear Award

A new category for 2023, this award recognises a brand, cobbler or designer who makes quality, durable footwear using sustainable materials, implements ethical labour practices and limits the use of toxic chemicals

  • Ifele
  • Reefer
  • SoulShooz

Innovative Design and Materials Award presented by Polo South Africa

Celebrating innovation in fashion, this award seeks to recognise a designer who uses innovative techniques to reduce textile waste and the negative environmental impact of the industry.

  • Heru- shezi
  • SinCHUI
  • SIXX6 (Pty) Ltd

Trans-seasonal Design Award presented by COUNTRY ROAD

This award rewards quality design that aspires to be timeless and made to last; through versatility and multi-functionality, the winning brand/designer is invested in the life of their garments and supports slower production cycles.

  • Munkus
  • Sipho Mbuto
  • Thabo Makhetha

Farm-To-Fashion Award

This category celebrates brands or designers committed to cultivating transparent and traceable supply chains and advocating for regenerative textile practices, making garments from 100% natural fabric, and using no fossil-fuel-based synthetics and as few toxins and chemicals as possible.

  • Botanical Nomad
  • Inke
  • Yarnh

Nicholas Coutts Artisanal Fashion Award presented by V&A Waterfront

In honour of the late designer Nicolas Coutts, who beautifully used and explored traditional crafts and techniques in his designs, this award recognises a designer who uses artisanal craft techniques to create fashion that foregrounds, celebrates and values the skills of garment workers and local communities.

  • UNI FORM by Luke Radloff
  • Fred Rich
  • Mors

Social Impact Award

Open to organisations working in the fashion and textile system, this category honours those who have a direct positive impact on people, such as raising awareness about social concerns, creating employment opportunities, and encouraging good and fair working conditions.

  • Patch & Stitch
  • Taking Care of Business
  • Mo-hey by Chommies
  • Urbanflock

Retail Award

This award recognises a retailer or retailing initiative that prioritises sustainability by including pre-loved and gently worn clothes, swap shops, garment rental and similar activities, as well as supporting local producers, vertical and regional supply chains, and sustainable design and manufacturing.

  • 99 Design
  • Style Rotate
  • Wisi-Oi Marketplace

Tastemaker Award

Recognising those who decide or influence what is, or will, become fashionable, this award goes to a photographer, stylist, influencer or content creator who has actively promoted slow sustainable fashion and/or slow living over the last 12 months, and who has sparked relevant conversations.

  • Felipe Mazibuko
  • Odwa Zamane
  • Ulindelwe Ratsibe

The Changemaker Award presented by Foschini

This overall prize, whose winner is selected by the judges from the highest scorers in the various design categories, recognises a designer whose career has embraced sustainable and circular design practices.

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