Dubbed the “Oscars of Fashion,” the prestigious event focuses on sustainability and fashion and is one of the world’s most foremost awards ceremony for this genre of fashion.
Khumalo was selected as the winner of 16 shortlisted independent designers, who have all been recognised for their outstanding contributions to the sustainable fashion industry over the past 12 months.
The designer was one of five award recipients, including Emmy award-winning actress Zendaya, who each received the Chopard-designed GCFA statuette.
When asked about being the winner, Khumalo said she was privileged to be honoured for the work that she and the other designers do in sustainability, and she dedicated her win to the “amazing artisans” she works with across South Africa.
Recent Debut at Milan Fashion Week
The Cape Town-based designer recently debuted at the Milan Fashion Week earlier this year with a collection based on American abolitionist Harriet Tubman.
The birthplace of Italian fashion, Milan’s fashion week saw many presentations being digital due to the global pandemic, including Khumalo’s debut which featured a fashion film to showcase her collection and honour the life of Tubman.
“I started my brand with the premise of being a modern-day Robin Hood: to create luxury clothing that will eventually help the poorest and most vulnerable in our society; to create a change for our continent and create a new future for our youth. This award reaffirms that dream,” she said.
Other recipients of awards at the ceremony included Emmy award-winning actress Zendaya, who won the GCFA Visionary Award, which recognises trailblazers in the industry who have been at the forefront of fashion and lead the way in important issues such as sustainability, equality, and diversity.
The CNMI Responsible Disruption Award went to Progetto Quid, which designs, produces, and distributes fashion collections made of first quality end-of-line fabric, offering career opportunities to those who would otherwise struggle on the job market, especially to women. And the GCFA North Star Award was presented to the United Nations for its Sustainable Development Goals.
The annual Green Carpet Fashion Awards celebrates the commitment of fashion houses to sustainability. The awards also highlight the human capital that goes into the making of fashion and the environmental and natural capital impact of the industry.
This year’s GCFA ceremony was filmed virtually at the magnificent Teatro Alla Scala Opera House in Milan, Italy. The opera house was exquisitely transformed into a virtual terrarium for the occasion with hanging plants, and greenery forming the backdrop of the show.
A variety of mixed media, holograms, visual effects, and augmented reality were incorporated into the 45-minute awards ceremony.
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