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RLSD, the outreach campaign run by the Leather and Hide Council of America (L&HCA) has partnered with the Fashion Accessory Makers of the Philippines (FAMPh) for the competition. The new partnership, which commits to ‘educating the next generation of creatives’, aims to promote the sustainable use of leather by the next generation of designers, encouraging them to embrace slow style and the circular economy rather than fast fashion and the use of cheap, unsustainable, less durable materials.

The RLSD Philippine Student Design Competition 2023 is open to people studying in art and design schools and colleges in the Philippines. Shortlisted finalists will be invited to create their design with the assistance of FAMPh and local sponsors.

Gina Nebrida Ty, President of the Fashion Accessory Makers of the Philippines, said: “This is definitely exciting times for the Philippine fashion industry as we launch the country’s first national leather competition amongst university and college students.

“We look forward to seeing a new generation of Filipino creatives, through their design entries, which will showcase and highlight excellent Filipino craftsmanship & unique ingenuity, through the use & marriage of Philippine genuine leather and beautifully-handcrafted local indigenous fabrics and materials.” 

Steve Sothmann, President of the Leather and Hide Council of America, said: “The competition’s mission is to spark the interest of the Philippine designers to work with responsibly produced real leather which puts hides that would otherwise go to waste to good use. Real leather doesn’t just look good, it is better for the environment than its man-made alternatives and they make products so durable that each can last a lifetime – its quintessentially ‘slow fashion’.

The RLSD Philippine Student Design Competition 2023 challenges young designers to design a single piece of apparel from one of three categories—apparel, accessories and footwear—using natural materials and 50% or more leather.

A winner will be selected from each category, then the judges will then select an overall winner.

The design of the overall winner will be professionally made to form part of a capsule collection showcasing the best international talent from the other RLSD Student Design Competitions from around the world and unveiled at an event hosted in Europe in October 2023 organized by RLSD.

Working with our partners at Arts Thread to develop lifelong learning and career opportunities for students of fashion and design. Our partnership provides the opportunity to compete on a world stage, participate in industry led workshops, set up an outstanding portfolio and gain access to the resources that will kickstart careers in fashion and design.