On January 3, the judging panel representing fashion brands such as Honggu and Staccato, shortlisted 45 entries from more than 400 illustrated submissions. The finalists now have three months to produce samples to be showcased in Beijing, where prizes are to be awarded. The competition forms part of an international programme aimed at promoting the values of high quality and responsibly sourced leather to the next generation of designers and crafts-persons. The entries were divided into four categories; apparel, bags, accessories and, the most popular, footwear. 

“The competition lets us talk with young design students from all over the world, to see their source of inspiration and to provide the tools to bring their vision to life. We are thrilled to have more than 400 entries this year, to be working in partnership with our colleagues in China, and to have the chance to support the next generation of designers”, said Steve Sothmann, President, LHCA.

The winners are to be honoured at an award ceremony hosted by LHCA and CLIA at the Beijing Institute of Fashion Technology during the first week of May. In addition to receiving Certificates of Excellence, cash awards and attendance at the award ceremony, they will receive exclusive training opportunities in the U.S., sponsored by LHCA.