When we arrived at the Hotel Plaza Athenée yesterday evening, we found that the bar—always a glam Paris destination—had been transformed for a fashion show... complete with a catwalk. Champagne flutes in hand, a chic crowd buzzed about the Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize, a prestigious award that was originally established in 2010 to help discover talented emerging designers, and jumpstart their careers. (The prize carries an endowment of €30,000.) The judging panel—all powerhouses in the fashion world, including Kenzo Takada and Chantal Thomass—had previously selected five finalists: Calla; IRM Design; Les Garcons Paris; Augustin Teboul; Quentin Veron.
For yesterday’s event, these finalists presented their designs in a dramatic fashion show- the DJ’s soundtrack creating the perfect mood for each collection’s presentation: Calla’s colorful prints; IRM Design’s structural white pant suits; Les Garçon’s fine, prêt-a-porter menswear; Quentin Veron’s gothic furs; Augustin Teboul’s avant-garde couture accented by elaborate black headpieces.
Christopher Cowdray, CEO of the Dorchester Collection, announced the winner… Augustin Teboul. Comprised of German-born Annelie Augustin and French-born Odély Teboul, the design team were positively ecstatic to receive this honor, jumping up and down in excitement. When asked what they planned to do with the winnings, the duo replied that they would finally be able to hire a staff, as they had stitched each of their intricate designs with their own hands.