Momoka Sato wins the Trieste fashion competition

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Mar 25, 2024

The 21st edition of International Talent Support (ITS) took place in Trieste (north-east Italy) on March 22, marking a new chapter for the fashion competition. Initiated by Barbara Franchin in 2002, the event now offers, among other things, a residency and an exhibition to its finalists. As ever, the focus was on pure creativity, with six Chinese and four Japanese winners, like Momoka Sato who won the ITS Arcademy Award grand prize of 15,000 euros.

A design by Momoka Sato, winner of the competition – ITS 2023/24

The Japanese designer has made a name for herself through the richness of her creations and her craftsmanship in intricate ceremonial outfits adorned with embroidery, lace and trimmings. She drew her inspiration from Japanese traditions such as the tea ceremony, Ikebana (floral art) and Sumi-e (black ink painting). The collection, dedicated to her grandmother who died during the Covid pandemic, was constructed like a journey to the afterlife, with each garment representing a stage in the journey.

“Momoka Sato’s collection demonstrates a strong sense of identity, craftsmanship and appreciation of tradition. In addition, it highlights aspects of sustainability that can be incorporated into sensibly made garments and educate consumers. The presentation of the portfolio was also impeccable,” commented the competition jury, who were particularly impressed by the project presentation portfolio when the entries were submitted.

A graduate of the Japanese fashion school Bunka Fashion College with a Bachelor’s degree in fashion design and holder of a Master’s degree in fashion design from Nottingham Trent University in the UK, Momoka Sato has worked for various textile companies in Japan, while launching her own brand in 2020.

A total of thirteen trophies were awarded from among the sixteen finalists. In particular to three other Japanese competitors. Takayuki Miyazaki, who along with Canadian Daniel Bosco received a special mention in the ITS Fashion Film Award category, won by Egyptian Amina Galal. Mieko Tsuboi, who also received a special mention in the ITS Digital Fashion Award. And Tomohiro Shibuki, who scooped three prizes: the GO! 2025 Borderless Award powered by Regione FVG on the theme of borders, the ITS Challenge The Status Quo Award powered by WRAD promoted by the eco-friendly street brand Wråd, and third prize in the ITS Sportswear Award powered by Lotto Sport.

Yuxi Sun won the accessories prize – ITS 2023/24

First place went to Clémentine Baldo from France, who studied at the Ecole Boulle and the IFM, and second place to Ivan Delogu from Italy. Delogu also won the ITS Responsible Creativity Award powered by CNMI and the ITS Artwork Award powered by Swatch Art Peace Hotel alongside Germany’s Chelsea Jean Lamm. Lamm’s compatriot Marcel Sommer won the ITS Special Mention powered by Pitti Immagine Tutoring & Consulting, while English jewellery designer Richard Farbey won the ITS Jury Special Award with China’s Ju Bao.

Like the Japanese, the Chinese were particularly prominent in Trieste this year. In addition to the Special Jury Prize awarded to Ju Bao and the ITS Digital Fashion Prize awarded to the couple formed by Yu Chen and Fanrui Sun, three other Chinese designers won just as many awards. Yuxi Sun won the ITS Accessories Award powered by Fondazione Ferragamo, Xiaoyue Lu the ITS Special Mention powered by Vogue Eyewear part of EssilorLuxottica and Wanqi Huang the ITS Special Mention powered by Fondazione Sozzani.

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