The designer duo behind Harman Grubiša, Madeleine Harman and Jessica Grubiša, are celebrating becoming the first New Zealand brand to win a category of the prestigious International Woolmark Prize.

The talented designers claimed the coveted prize after impressing the judges with their six-piece capsule collection that included one look in merino wool. They join twelve Woolmark finalists from around the world in receiving a $75,000 financial contribution towards their next collection as well as an invitation to participate in the international finals. The overall winner of the International Woolmark Prize will receive NZ$215,000 as prize money.

Harman Grubisa’s winning look was a belted wool black and tan tweed blazer over a royal blue 16-micron wool dress that converts into a clutch.

We’ve only been designing together for three and a half years, so to even be nominated for a Woolmark prize is a huge honour, let alone for the second year running, and now to win it. Not only will the prize money help us create a more mature, high-quality infrastructure, the award puts us alongside some of the most revered designers in fashion history, which is such a dream for us both. – Jessica Grubiša

New Zealand fashion is at such an interesting time. We have been thrust into the digital era, where you can be seen and judged very quickly from not only your local peers, but the world’s biggest critics. The growth curve can be very steep, and we have worked extremely hard to put our best foot forward at every opportunity. – Madeleine Harman

The International Wool Secretariat Prize has a prestigious history and was first launched in 1953. Industry legend Karl Lagerfeld famously won the prize aged just 21 for his coat design. The iconic Yves Saint Laurent was just 18 years old when he won for his dress design in 1954.



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