The new competition will promote sustainable leather and leather production to students in the Philippines.

The RLSD Philippine Student Design Competition 2023 will be open to students from art and design schools across the country, who will be challenged to design a single piece of apparel, accessory, or footwear item using natural materials and 50% or more leather.

Shortlisted finalists will then be invited to create their design concept with the assistance of FAMPh and local sponsors, while the final Overall Winner will have their design professionally made as part of a capsule collection showcasing the best international talent and unveiled at an event hosted by LHCA in Europe in October 2023.

Gina Nebrida Ty, President of FAMPh, said: “This partnership between FAMPh and LHCA will give a major boost to the Philippine Tannery group, in the hope that we can further help revitalise, modernise and strengthen the local leather industry, through shared best practices, learnings and techniques from LHCA.”

Steve Sothmann, President of the LHCA, added: “The competition’s mission is to spark the interest of the Philippine designers to work with responsibly produced real leather which puts hides that would otherwise go to waste, to good use. Real leather doesn’t just look good, it is better for the environment than its man-made alternatives and they make products so durable that each can last a lifetime – its quintessentially ‘slow fashion’.”