Italian designer takes top award

Last updated 05:00 04/04/2014

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The character and personalities of the designers who won the top awards at the iD International Emerging Designer Awards in Dunedin has shone through in their winning garments, judges say.

An Italian emerging designer collection complete with "innovative technology, expert tailoring and construction and an inexplicable X factor", won the big prize at last night's 10th annual awards at the Dunedin Town Hall.

Italian-based Mahshid Mahdian, from Brera Academy in Milan, won the iD Dunedin Fashion Inc's top $10,000 prize with her collection Shadow, inspired by the beauty in the shadows and reflections of Burano Island in Venice.

Born in Tehran, Mahdian's collection impressed the judges with its bold geometrical shapes, diverse cuts and innovative technologies.

Judge Francis Hooper said the standard of finalists was amazing.

"The winners stood out because their unique character and personality as a designer came through in their garments."

Mahdian "captured a moment in a heartbeat", the judge said.

"When you looked at her collection, you knew she had it just right. It delivered on that inexplicable X factor."

Hosted by television broadcaster Carol Hirschfeld, the 1350- strong audience enjoyed 26 international collections from emerging designers from New Zealand, Australia, Europe, China, and India.

This year's winners:

iD Dunedin Fashion Inc. 1st ($10,000): Mahshid Mahdian, 36, Brera Academy, Italy.

Caffe L'affare 2nd ($4000): Alanna Barca, 22, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia.

Dunedin International Airport 3rd ($2000): Chin Hau Tay, 22, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology.

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- The Southland Times

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