The fashion competitions’ agenda of 2021

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The show must go on! Despite the pandemic and the uncertain moments related, the world of fashion competitions will continue its run also in 2021. In this article we’ll see the provisional calendar of all the best international fashion contests, with the contacts to be informed when and how to enroll.

The Covid-19 pandemic has upset all the normal plans of fashion weeks and events like fashion competitions, making very hard the work of organizators and events’ staff. The main difficulties are in giving a definitive timetable due the local lockdown and in the way of conducting the events. Coronavirus is changing our daily routine, the way we can meet people or staying all together into a close space.

The creation of the finalist Rosie Baird in the virtual set created by the staff of ITS International Talent Support

That’s why many events and fashion shows are becoming even more digitalized, with virtual catwalks and presentations, online meetings only, social media events instead of the usual meetings and real exhibitions opened to the public.

Anyway today we want to try to summarize all the opportunities for young and emerging fashion designers that could be placed during 2021. We use the conditional tense because it’s not possible to the present day, being sure about dates and real possibilities of each event. We will give you all the best fashion contests’ website links and a provisional timetable, a sort of fashion competitions agenda for 2021, with the recomandation to directly contact the organizations for further informations.

(in the cover the creation of Tara Babylon at ITS International Talent Support 2020)


The 36th International Festival of Fashion, Photography and Fashion Accessories of Hyères is an international fashion competition organized every year in the South France. A 4-days event in which the designers have the possibility to show their collections to journalists, buyers and the public through fashion shows and exhibitions in the stunning set of Provence.

The Jury is always composed by the greatest names of fashion world like Jean Paul Gaultier, John Galliano, Christian Lacroix just to name a few and from the competition came many important fashion designers like Viktor & Rolf, Anthony Vaccarello, Juline Dossen, Yiqing Yin and many others.

This fashion contest is particularly focused on sustainability, so one of the criteria to submit the collection (menswear, womenswear or genderfree) is the use of ecological fabrics and sustainable design processes. The collection must be original, made specifically for this fashion competition. The ten finalists will be supported for the production.

The deadline to submit is 1th Febraury 2021 through an online form that you can find on the Hyères Fashion Festival’s website.

Ela Fidalgo, finalist of the 2018 edition of the Hyères Fashion Fastival (photo credits @insidehyeresfestival on Instagram)

The important fashion contest MITTELMODA – THE FASHION AWARD is internationally recognized and reserved to the students of fashion schools and Art & Design academies from all over the world or fashion designer already graduated but at least 28 years old.

You can partecipated with a womenswear or menswear collection, that will have the major money prizes, and also with minor categories like knitwear, accessories, bags & shoes, textiles & materials, competing for other prizes.

The finalists, selected by an important Jury headed by Matteo Marzotto, will have the chance to present their capsule collections during a special Mittelmoda’s event at MICAM FAIR in Milan.

To join the competition you have to pre-register yourself through an online form into the MITTELMODA’ s website and then follow the instructions for completing the enrolling procedure. The submission deadline is 2nd April 2021.

The International Lab of Mittelmoda Fashion Award 2020 (photo credits Mittelmoda’s official website)


ITS – INTERNATIONAL TALENT SUPPORT is probably the most important and internationally renowned fashion competition organized in Italy, that annually hosts in Trieste the best emerging designers coming from over 300 fashion schools from 80 countries across the globe. But not only a simple fashion competion.

ITS is a real and big platform with an incredible creative archive with thousands of fashion design portfolios and an academic program for high professional education called ITS ARCADEMY. In 2020 ITS became completely digital, but had as usual a great success.

Why to enroll to INTERNATIONAL TALENT SUPPORT? Because it can be a great challange for bringing out the best from your creative portfolio, because many great talents of fashion won or were the finalists of this competition (Demna Gvasalia, Peter Pilotto, Aitor Throup, Richard Quinn just to mention a few) and because the prizes are always important and decidedly useful for launching new brands or entering the fashion world.

The deadline for enrolling is not yet decided. For more info visit ITS’ website.

The creation of Aharon Israel Genish in the backstage of ITS Award (photo credits ITS’ official website)


The REDRESS DESIGN AWARD hold in Hong Kong is one of the most important fashion competitions for sustainable fashion. Opened to fashion designer over 18 from across the globe, the contest this year is matched to another interesting initiative, the Pathway Course, an online course just started and that will finish at the end of January, for all the partecipants focused on the circular economy and the sustainable fashion design process.

For the competition in itself, instead, the partecipants must have less than four years of professional experience in the fashion system, that’s why this is a very interesting contest for beginners.

You can partecipate presenting 3 fashion sketches of outfits made using textile waste or fabric obtained from recycled waste, and you can be selected for three categories: creativity and originality, sustainability, marketability.

The competition is divided into semi-final stage and final stage and the finalists will have the possibility to see their creations (the initial three plus two more made exclusively for the exhibition and events) on catwalk and in a touring international exhibition. To enroll you have time until 15th March 2021 and you have to fill the online application on the REDRESS DESIGN AWARD’s website.

Maddie Williams was one of the winners of the REDRESS DESIGN AWARD (photo credits Redress’s official website)

The World of WearableArt (WOW) is an international fashion competition launched in 1987, hold in New Zealand and dedicated not to ordinary fashion collections but on the creation of real wearable masterpieces including textile art and avant-garde fashion.

The competition wants to conjugate the world of fashion and art transforming the usual fashion show into a real theatrical performance, that’s why it could be a great experience for all the designers who want to create something more artistic than a simple commercial fashion collection and for those who are passionate about cutting-edge fashion and textile experimentation.

There’s no entry fee and the deadline for foreigner emerging fashion designers and fashion artists is within 26th March 2021 through an online application. Visit the World of WearableArt (WOW)’s website for all the imformations.

The World of Wearable Art WOW’s great final performance

The INTERNATIONAL WOOLMARK PRIZE has a very long heritage, since the early 50s. The important and globally renowned fashion contest was launched by the International Wool Secretariat to support the new talents of fashion and to promote the use of superfine wool from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Among the best fashion designers who won the prize during its history we can find great names like Yves Saint Laurent, Karl Lagerfeld, Ralph Lauren and Gabriela Hearst.

Every year a very high quality Jury selects 10 finalists who have usually 8 months for creating a special collection for the competition, then presented during the fashion weeks and that will be commercialized throught the Woolmark Company‘s network.

The competition is opened to every fashion designer of the planet, who can match to the Woolmark Company’s criteria, like for example a distribution network and a minimun press coverage. That’s why this fashion competition is perfect for the emerging designers who already work with their brand for some years and have a bit of experience.

The usual timetable for applications go from March to June, but for further information please visit the official INTERNATIONAL WOOLMARK PRIZE’s website.

The International Woolmark Prize (photo credits Woolmark’s official Instagram profile)

The ARTS OF FASHION FOUNDATION COMPETITION is a fashion competition organized every year in San Francisco (USA) since 2002, that wants to promote and reward the talents of young fashion creatives from all around the world.

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50 finalists will be selected from the students of fashion schools, fashion universities and academies. The partecipants can enroll to it presenting mini collections of clothing (menswear, womenswear or mixed) or accessories, composed by three outfits or pieces, inspired by the theme “Momentum” (that can be freely interpreted).

They will have the opportunity to showcase their collections in the beautiful set of the San Francisco Asian Art Museum during a special event in December 2021.

The deadline for enrolling the fashion contest is 1st April 2021 through the ARTS OF FASHION FOUNDATION’s website.

The Art of Fashion Foundation Competition of 2021 is inpired by the theme “Momentum”

WHO IS ON NEXT? is the very important fashion competition launched in 2009 and organized every year by Altaroma in collaboration with Vogue Italia, the Italian Institutions, Pitti Immagine and Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana. A real scouting project that wants to support the emerging brands of Made in Italy through professional mentoring, business development, fashion shows and presentations, mass media coverage and important money prizes.

Particularly important is the coverage offered by Vogue Italia, that gives also the Franca Sozzani Prize. Among the best winners of the latest editions we can find interesting new names like Francesco Murano, Federico Cina and Brognano.

The fashion competition is opened to all Italian and international young and emerging designers who have at least two collections commercialized and completely realized in Italy. That’s why it’s the perfect fashion contest for all the brands that already have an experience and a distribution network, not exactly for beginners.

The usual schedule for enrolling is at the beginning of the year, but due to the pandemic situation, for example the last edition’s enrolling deadline was postponed to May. For further info and the exact dates we suggest you to contact directly the organization from the Altaroma’s website.

Francesco Murano is the winner of the latest edition of “Who Is On Next?” at Altaroma


Another interesting fashion competition for fashion students and emerging designers of Made in Italy is the IFTA – ITALIAN FASHION TALENT AWARDS, that for the pandemic had to change the normal schedule of the contest. Commonly hold in November or December, the final of the 2020 edition will be realized in Salerno (South Italy) in the next months.

This time were selected 30 finalists (soon you’ll see a special article dedicated to the TFP TALENTS‘ designers who were selected for the final fashion show of the 2020 edition) and we can’t wait to see their mini collections of three outfits on catwalk.

We don’t have actually the precise date of the next 2021 IFTA’s edition, but following the changes determined by the Covid-19, it will be probably postponed from march to october. We suggest you to directly call the organization and to keep an eye to the official ITALIAN FASHION TALENT AWARDS’ website for further info.


If you are looking for other fashion contests in Italy, here we are with our smallest but always useful fashion competitions organized through our platform for young fashion designers and emerging brands TFP TALENTS. Every month we give life to a special fashion contest reserved to the members of our Talent Community (now with almost 90s designers coming from across Italy and many important fashion schools).

Becoming part of our platform is very easy, as well as the partecipation to our fashion challenges on Instagram. Every month we reward the winners with useful prices like workshops, short free courses for branding, publications of the talent’s collection on our media or in collaboration with fashion magazines, even the possibility to sell their creation on marketplaces or showrooms partner of the platform.

You can find informations about the launch and deadline of the fashion contest every month, just following our @tfptalents Instagram profile or our Facebook official page. For enrolling the competitions and to become a member or our Talent Community, please write us an email at or or writing in Direct Mail on Instagram (@tfptalents)

But the platform is also fashion shows, emerging designer exhibitions and events, consulting services for creating and launching new emerging brands and many other initiatives created to promote the talent of young designers. For further informations about the competitions or the platform take a look to TFP TALENTS’ website.


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