Miuccia Prada, undoubtedly one of the most interesting personalities in the industry, will be receiving an award for her decades of work and contributions to fashion by no less than the British Fashion Council. In being given the distinction Outstanding Achievement Award, Prada will be joining other respected and accomplished icons such as Manolo Blahnik, Ralph Lauren, Donatella Versace and Karl Lagerfeld.
The award is wholly deserved by Prada, who has been the lead of the Italian label her grandfather has established for 40 years now and founded its sister company, Miu Miu, which takes after the designer’s name. Having established a reputation for the nonconformist, Miuccia had a different career trajectory than most esteemed names in fashion, only assuming the leadership of the family business out of necessity. Although an extremely private person, there are facts about her that are common knowledge: Prada spent time in the academia and theater, and was even an activist, before becoming hands-on with the luxury company in 1978. At the time, the label was in dire need of an update. With her previous experience and penchant for the non-traditional, she was the perfect person to revivify the fashion house. She also utilized the house as a platform for reevaluating conventions in the industry.
The designer’s practicality translated well in her garments for Prada, but without the curse of being boring and basic. That is partly due to Miuccia Prada being always one step ahead in her work, taking the lead rather than mindlessly following trends. BFC Chairman Stephanie Phair says of the designer, “Mrs Prada’s intuition for the zeitgeist and her blending of multiple creative disciplines including fashion design, art and architecture since the beginning have made her a pioneering force in our industry“. Sure, there were naysayers along the way, but her boldness has earned her the respect of her peers and other people in the industry. Soon enough, everyone else would follow her direction and even imitate her personal style. Just take the neon clothes that have become quite the storm this year—the trend has commonly been attributed to Miuccia. Besides producing intelligent, proper-fitting designs, Prada has also been influential in her work with accessories.
The label has grown beyond being a family business for Prada. Besides being a “design maverick”, BFC through CEO Caroline Rush also recognizes how the designer transformed the company into a global brand. It has expanded with Miu Miu as a subsidiary, which became the designer’s outlet for her more experimental side, as well as Church’s, Marchesi 1824 and Car Shoe. The maison ebbs and flows just like any other, but it has achieved something others that others are still struggling with. With Miuccia at its helm, Prada has been cemented as one of the most esteemed luxury labels in the world.
We have yet to learn of other awardees, although photographers Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott will be bestowed the Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator according to reports in November. The British Fashion Awards 2018 will take place on the 10th of December, and the entire ceremony will be witnessed in the British capital’s Royal Albert Hall, which has been the case in the past years. The event will be conducted in partnership with Swarovski. The yearly awards show is organized in order to recognize exceptional fashion talents both locally and internationally.
Image credits: The Prada Group, Brigitte Lacombe, Marie Claire, Virgin Experience Days UK, The Hospitality Broker, Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott