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Announcing 2009 EDFF Winners

ECCO DOMANI FASHION FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES THE FUTURE STARS OF FASHION

Italian Winemaker Recognizes Elite Group of Designers for 2009 Awards

January 5, 2009, New York, NY—Ecco Domani® wines is proud to announce the recipients of the 2009 Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation (EDFF) awards: Cushnie et Ochs , Lyn Devon, Matthew Ames, and OHNE TITEL in the women's design category; CORPUS in the men's design category; and Monique Péan in the accessories category. EDFF also introduces its inaugural Sustainable Design category winner, Bodkin Brooklyn . These future stars of fashion each received a $25,000 grant to help showcase their collection at New York Fashion Week this February.

"The certainty of the Ecco Domani awards and the certainty of the new awardees' talent are particularly meaningful in these uncertain times," said Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation judge Marylou Luther, editor at The International Fashion Syndicate.

This is the eighth year that Ecco Domani has recognized emerging designers, giving them the opportunity to present their collections at the world's preeminent fashion event.

More about the designers:

  • Cushnie et Ochs is designed by recent Parsons New School for Design graduates, Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs. Launched in 2008, Cushnie et Ochs defines a vision of dressing that applies to women who desire a level of sex, sophistication and individuality in their clothes. The collection introduces them to new proportions, bold designs and razor-sharp silhouettes.
  • Lyn Devon honed her craft while working for top designers Ralph Lauren and former EDFF winner Zac Posen. During her tenure at Ralph Lauren, Devon began designing and producing her own line of custom clothing out of her living room for a small, private clientele. In 2005, she launched her eponymous label which showed a sensibility for refined, finely crafted clothing with a taste for precise tailoring and clean sportswear.
  • Matthew Ames is a graduate of The School of The Art Institute in Chicago. Introduced in 2005, the collection is designed to be timeless and easy to wear without losing the excitement of fashion. In a world of excesses, Ames' clothes evoke a simplicity to the eye, a certain ease, a reduction to the essential and a freedom in both form and function.
  • OHNE TITEL is the design duo of Alexa Adams and Flora Gill. The two met in New York City in 1999 while attending Parsons New School for Design, where they bonded over shared influences and style. Following individual stints at Karl Lagerfeld and Helmut Lang, the two launched OHNE TITEL in 2005. The collection pairs architectural shapes and soft draping with a keen attention to detail in fit and finish for a strong and modern woman.
  • Corpus is created by the design duo of Jerrod Cornish and Keith Richardson. Cornish's varied career has taken him from modeling in Milan to creating marketing campaigns for Hollywood studios. Son of a US Air Force doctor, Richardson formerly traveled the world as a professional soccer player. After deciding that fashion was his true calling, he moved to Los Angeles, where he met Cornish while working on a film set. The two soon found they shared a passion for the unique aesthetics of fashion design, and introduced CORPUS in 2004. The collection exhibits a marriage between the edgy street look and the bespoken classicism that the new modern man seeks when making a unique statement.
  • Monique Péan began her career as an investment banker for Goldman Sachs. A love for art and design led her to attend fashion courses during that time. In 2006 Péan launched her collection of sustainable fine jewelry consisting of opulent pieces inspired by the indigenous cultures of such places as Haiti, Bali, Alaska, and China. Passionate about the opportunity to affect social change and raise awareness of global issues through design, her collection is made of eco-friendly, sustainable and conflict-free materials.
  • Bodkin Brooklyn is designed by Eviana Hartman. Founding columnist of The Washington Post's EcoWise column and former fashion features editor at NYLON, Hartman focused a great deal of her career on writing about environmental issues. Hartman began collaborating with designer Samantha Pleet on a weekend experiment in reworking old leather jackets into bags, and the pair went on to codesign Bodkin's fall 2008 and spring 2009 capsule collections. Bodkin's goal is to create a collection designed with principles of subtlety, relevance and urbanity that can be executed with sustainability and transparency.

"We recognize the difficulties emerging designers face in bringing their visions to life, especially in this tough economic climate" said Patrick Coyle, Marketing Director for Ecco Domani wines. "We hope that the support of the Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation will give these designers the opportunity to bring a whole new level of talent and excitement to the fashion community."

This year's Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation recipients were selected by a distinguished committee of fashion insiders. The women's wear, sustainable and accessories designers were judged by Marylou Luther, editor at International Fashion Syndicate; Sally Singer, Fashion News/Features Director for Vogue; Kim Hastreiter, Editor-in-Chief & Publisher of Paper Magazine; Julie Gilhart, Vice President of Fashion Merchandising at Barneys; Ruth Finley, Publisher of The Fashion Calendar; Nicole Fischelis, Vice President and Women's Fashion Director at Macy's; and Ken Downing, Senior Vice President and Fashion Director at Neiman Marcus. The men's category committee included Jay Bell, Buyer for Menswear Design at Barneys New York; Christopher Bollen, Editor in Chief of Interview; and Alex Badia, Men's Fashion Director of Women's Wear Daily.

More than 150 designers from across the U.S. submitted applications via the Ecco Domani website, www.eccodomani.com. To be eligible, entrants must have been in the design business for no longer than five years and have a minimum of one retail account. In addition to references, applicants were required to submit look books and/or photographs of their work. From the initial pool of applicants, up to 25 semi-finalists were chosen in each category and then evaluated on samples of their most recent ready-to-wear women's, men's, sustainable and accessories collections. From this talented group, the judges voted on the final seven.

Ecco Domani is proud to have helped launch the careers of fashion designers such as Zac Posen, Proenza Schouler, Peter Som, Thakoon, Doo.Ri, Derek Lam, Erin Fetherston, Brian Reyes, Vena Cava, Alexander Wang, Rag & Bone and Rodarte. Visit www.eccodomani.com to see a complete list of EDFF alumni.

For more information or designer biographies and photos, please contact:
DeVries Public Relations
Erin Serrano
212-891-0408/ eserrano@devries-pr.com

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