The Fashion Awards (in partnership with Swarovski) have come to serve as the closing out ceremony in fashion each year, the last big awards show of the season before everyone dashes off to finish before deadlines and jet away for the holidays. The industry's best and brightest flock to London for an enchanted evening of cocktails and comrodery. The star of this year's event? Stella McCartney OBE, who will take home a brand new title: the Special Recognition Award for Innovation.
The designer was chosen for the prize because of her steadfast commitment to sustainability, and proving that environmentally conscious clothing does not mean compromising luxury. Since founding her eponymous label with Kering in 2001, McCartney — a vegetarian, naturally — has never used any animal products (leather, fur, feathers) in her designs. Instead, she has demonstrated an innovative devotion to sourcing alternative materials that most consumers would never even recognize as not being "the real thing." The subtlety of her craft doesn't mean she's quiet about her passion, though; she made her message loud and clear with her Fall 2017 campaign, which showed models in a landfill.
Recently, McCartney has expanded her approach with new partnerships, working with Bolt Threads, which pioneers bioengineered silk, and The RealReal, a luxury consignment website that seeks to end fashion's obsession with only wearing what's new, and extend the lifespan of garments.
“I’m incredibly proud to get this award," McCartney said. "What I am most proud of is that it is a new award that is introduced into the Fashion Awards, a special recognition on innovation. I am hoping that as being the first recipient, I can inspire other design houses to follow suit and to make this the most prestigious award, not just a one off.”
You can read more about Stella McCartney's commitment to sustainability on her website. The Fashion Awards 2017 will take place on December 4 at the Royal Albert.