It was award-time in Berlin last week: Turkish denim producer Isko chose the German capital to hold the grand finale of its Isko I-Skool contest to celebrate “young denim talent.” The historic Glashaus building (located right next to Seek trade show) was the setting where this year’s winners were announced in the presence of an international denim and fashion audience.

For the first time, this edition–which marks the sixth round of the Isko I-Skool awards–welcomed participation not only by students in their final year of fashion design but denim design professionals in the early stages of their careers.

Line-up of the Isko I-Skool finalists
Photo: Isko
Line-up of the Isko I-Skool finalists

Participants were asked to start from focusing on the body as inspiration, along with a market and target consumer analysis. They then worked on their own vision of the future of fit. They had to go beyond the creation of a single outfit, designing a complete capsule collection and were provided with Isko fabrics. Winning criteria included the impact of the finalists’ vision and storytelling and the actual marketability of the garments.

A catwalk performance showcasing all 17 denim outfits initiated the official award ceremony hosted by award-winning Hollywood actor and environmental activist Matthew Modine.


The announced winners were:

Xiaohui Lyu, BIFT (Beijing Institute of Fashion Technology),
winner of the Best Overall Student Award, Best Showpiece Award and Vogue Talents Special Mention Award

Model in the three-time-winner outfit created by Xiaohui Lyu who won Best Overall Student Award, Best Showpiece Award and Vogue Talents Special Mention Award
Photo: Isko
Model in the three-time-winner outfit created by Xiaohui Lyu who won Best Overall Student Award, Best Showpiece Award and Vogue Talents Special Mention Award

Isabelle Viengxay,
winner of the Best Overall Young Professional Award

Winner of the Best Overall Young Professional Award: the outfit of Isabelle Viengxay
Photo: SI Team
Winner of the Best Overall Young Professional Award: the outfit of Isabelle Viengxay


Bilge Hakan Gurkaynak, Polimoda,
winner of the Riri Award and receiving high commendations for the Best Sustainable Design Award
Model in outfit designed by Bilge Hakan Gurkaynak, commended for the Best Sustainable Design award and winner of the Riri award
Photo: SI Team
Model in outfit designed by Bilge Hakan Gurkaynak, commended for the Best Sustainable Design award and winner of the Riri award


Irene De Vecchi, NABA (Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti),
winner of the Reca Award

Model in outfit by Irene de Vecchi, winner of the Reca award
Photo: Isko
Model in outfit by Irene de Vecchi, winner of the Reca award


Alex Luonto, Aalto University – School of Arts, Design and Architecture,
winner of the SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL Special Mention Award
Winning outfit by Alex Luonto
Photo: Isko
Winning outfit by Alex Luonto


Shirin Fakhradin Araghi, AMD - Akademie Mode & Design,
receiving high commendations for the Best Sustainable Design Award

Outfit by Shirin Fakhradin Araghi, who received high commendations for the Best Sustainable Design Award
Photo: Isko
Outfit by Shirin Fakhradin Araghi, who received high commendations for the Best Sustainable Design Award


The jurors’ panel consisted of a "creative" and a "technical" jury:

Creative Jury:
Francisco Costa – Former creative director at Calvin Klein, founder of sustainable beauty brand Costa Brazil
Orsola De Castro – Founder and creative director at Fashion Revolution
Marco Falcioni – Senior head of design Boss Men’s Casualwear
Miles Johnson – Former creative director at Patagonia and Levi Strauss, freelance design director
Sabine Kühnl – Editor-in-chief at SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL
Sara Maino – Deputy editor of Vogue Italia and head of Vogue Talents
Kai Margrander – Fashion director at Harper’s Bazaar Germany
Alberto Rigoni – Washing and treatments quality control manager at Replay
Marina Testino – Designer, founder of Point Off View, Parsons graduate, influencer, model

Technical Jury:
Alessio Berto – The Tailor Pattern Support
Paolo Diacci – Reca Group
Nantas Montonati and Otello Lucietto – Riri Group
Hale Bahar Öztürk and Tricia Carey – Lenzing Group
Carme Santacruz Zaragozá– Jeanologia




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