Rhode Island School of Design alumni Yuki Xu was lost for words when her name was announced as the winner of the SUPIMA Design Competition 2021. Hosted by Law Roach, the contest brought together six students from some of the country’s top fashion schools with the challenge to create a capsule collection utilizing SUPIMA cotton fabrics.
Xu and her fellow next-gen finalists showcased their work in a live runway presentation at new state-of-the-art venue 608 Fifth Avenue during the official NYFW schedule. Each designer’s eveningwear capsule was comprised of five looks using five different types of SUPIMA fabrics—shirting, twill, denim, jersey, and velveteen—with mentorship provided by designer Bibhu Mohapatra as a guiding light along the way. As the ultimate winner, Xu is taking home a prize of $10,000 and (invaluable!) industry recognition.
Collections had been evaluated by a panel of judges including SDC returning host and judge, Law Roach, Nicola Formichetti, Fern Mallis, Edward Barsamian, Luke Meagher, Kelly Augustine, Godfrey Deeny, The Daily’s Freya Drohan, Gianluca Longo, Emilia Petrarca, Avril Graham, Claire Thomson Jonville, Rajni Jacques, Maria Bernad, Tyler McCall, Tati Cotliar, Shibon Kennedy, Jerome Lamaar, and the 2016 SDC winner, Jeffrey Taylor.
Xu’s fellow finalists were Cat Pfingst of Drexel University, Jiarui (Ruby) Cai of Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Yitao Li of Fashion Institute of Technology, Alana Tolliver of Kent State University, and Bora Kim of School of Art Institute of Chicago. In the words of Law Roach, remember these names, use them, speak of them, make space for them, and support them.
Until next year!