The high calibre of entries this year highlights the strength of our emerging talent in Australia and the growing commitment towards conscious fashion. The AFC congratulates the chosen finalists for 2019, who have each demonstrated a focus on creating cutting edge design and building sustainable business foundations.

David Giles-Kaye, CEO, Australian Fashion Council

BT’s Emerging Fashion Designer Awards are back in full force for their 7th year running; shining a light on the up-and-coming fashion sensations you’ll wish you’d heard of sooner.

This week, BT Financial Group in partnership with The Australian Fashion Council, announced design newcomers Courtney Holm of A.BCH, Minhee Jo of Aaizél and Blair Archibald of Blair Archibald as its finalists for the 2019 BT Emerging Designer Award.

The three finalists were hand selected from over 50 applications by an esteemed panel of industry experts including Edwina McCann (Editorial Director, Vogue Australia & Co-Chair, Australian Fashion Council), Bianca Spender (Founder & Designer, Bianca Spender), Melissa Singer (Fashion Editor, The Age & Sydney Morning Herald), Jaana Quaintance-James (Head of Sustainability & Ethical Sourcing, THE ICONIC) and Rebecca Lim (Group Executive, Compliance, Legal & Secretariat, Westpac Group).

Established in 2013, the initiative has fast become one of the most esteemed events on the fashion calendar, stewarding Australian design talent to success both at home and globally.

Leading by example, this year the awards updated their criteria to focus strongly on sustainability and ethical practices within the applicants business’. This visionary change highlights the commitment young Australian designers have towards conscious fashion; ensuring all applicants looked internally at their business operations and their impact on the world around them.

Meet the 2019 Finalists:

A.BCH: A.BCH is the independent fashion label for the conscious citizen. Focused on bettering the fashion industry from the inside-out, A.BCH’s designs are made with responsibly sourced fibres, threads and components as well as ethical supply chains.

The brand has successfully created a desire for responsible fashion while eliminating the issues customers face when seeking more sustainable alternatives. A pioneer in the industry with circularity at the design level, founder Courtney Holm makes her voice heard with this transparent label.

Aaizél: Effortlessly strong whilst maintaining femininity, Aaizél offer elevated, every day essentials. A collection both season-less and timeless; catering to both hemispheres and delighting the nomadic girl within.

Uniquely melding influences from the romantic details of European art and the tradition of East Asian clothing construction, Aaizél cuts an undone yet structured silhouette for the progressive girl with a poetic spirit.

Blair Archibald: Contemporary, practical, adaptable: just some of the synonyms that could describe the label Blair Archibald; fusing soft tailoring, sports and workwear in a seamless fashion to form a coherent collection that is both functional and adaptable.

The brand’s ability to create garments engineered for longevity with their minimalistic aesthetic transforms its locally produced and considered fabrics into designs that redefine gender conventions.  Their neutral silhouettes making them accessible to both men and women alike.