The British Fashion Council has confirmed The Fashion Awards 2017 will once again take place at the Royal Albert Hall on 4 December and that headline sponsor Swarovski has committed £300,000 to the BFC Education Foundation ahead of the event.
Following a relaunch last year the event, formerly known as the British Fashion Awards, will celebrate fashion designers, industry figures and businesses both from Britain and internationally. The event has also been positioned as the primary fundraiser for the BFC Education Foundation, which awards scholarships to BA and MA students.
Last year’s awards raised £700,000 of which the Foundation received £300,000 while £400,000 was invested in new talent incubator NEWGEN, Business Support and the BFC Colleges Council. In the last academic year, the Foundation awarded more than £100,000 across 12 BA and MA scholarships. The donation from last year’s awards will allow the BFC to broaden the variety and number of scholarships for the upcoming academic year, it said.
This year Swarovski has pledged £300,000 to the Foundation ahead of the event and the BFC is inviting others in the fashion industry to support the initiative by donating online. “An essential part of Swarovski’s mission is to nurture young designers and invest in the next generation of fashion talent,” said Swarovski executive board member Nadja Swarovski.
“Our mission aligns brilliantly with the British Fashion Council and The Fashion Awards, as these awards are both a celebration of the best in global fashion, and a vital platform to raise funds for the BFC’s Education Foundation. Young designers are the heartbeat of our business, and it’s up to all of us to foster and champion their visions to keep our industry thriving,” Swarovski added.
BFC chairman Dame Natalie Massenet said the organisation was on course to achieve its goal of raising £10m for fashion education over the next 10 years. “The resounding success of last year’s Awards, as a spectacular gala to honour so many incredible individuals and also as a fundraiser, reinforces that this is a target that the industry supports,” she said.
Around 2,000 industry figures will attend the ceremony on 4 December which recognises individuals and businesses in categories ranging from British Designer of the Year, Designer of the Year, Business Leader of the Year and Urban Luxury Brand. Honorary awards include the Outstanding Achievement Award, the Swarovski Award for Positive Change and the Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator.
Big winners from last year included Gigi Hadid, Marco Bizzari of Gucci, Simone Rocha, Craig Green, Alessandro Michele, Ralph Lauren and the late editor of Vogue Italia Franca Sozzani, who sadly passed away just weeks after receiving her award following a year-long illness.
“Last year’s awards marked a landmark moment for the Education Foundation; it has been fantastic to see our industry reaffirm its support for education with such generosity. As we look to the future of the Foundation and the Fashion Awards, Swarovski have set the bar with their incredibly generous donation to this year’s fundraising efforts,” said BFC CEO Caroline Rush, CBE.
Tickets will go on sale from 15 August for American Express customers and will go on general sale from 18 August at fashionawards.com.