The Core of Your Job Application
Your portfolio is just as vital to a job application as your CV. We asked the fashion professionals for their top 10 portfolio tips.
Welcoming remarks from Brigitte Zypries, Parliamentary State Secretary for the Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy
The European Fashion Award FASH is one of the most important international awards for upcoming talent. It is exceptional, because rather than being a marketing tool for companies, products or locations, it focuses on giving support to students.
Circle of Friends
The SDBI Circle of Friends helps with ideally and material support to expand the work of SDBI. According to the statutes of 1978, the resources of the foundation are invested in students exclusively. In addition, the Circle of Friends helps to extend the network between students, universities, companies and design.
Joachim Schirrmacher, (Chairman) Creative Consultant, Berlin
Margareta van den Bosch, Creative Adviser, H & M – Hennes & Mauritz, Stockholm
Dr. Adelheid Rasche, Director Sammlung Modebild – Lipperheidesche Kostümbibliothek, Kunstbibliothek Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (Lipperheide Costume Library, National Museums in Berlin),
Michael Sontag, Designer, Berlin
Robb Young, Fashion Journalist and Consultant, London
Ruth Emblin, Translation
Constanze Fuchs, Organisation
Tobias Gröber, Chairman
Natalie Langenecker, Organisation
Christof Nardin, Design
Joachim Schirrmacher, Art-Direction, Director
Anja Ulrich, Deputy Chairwoman
Tobias Gröber, Executive Director Business Unit Consumer Goods, Messe Muenchen GmbH
Anja Ulrich, Lawyer, Messe Muenchen GmbH
The Stiftung der Deutschen Bekleidungsindustrie
Vision and Mission
Ensuring the future of fashion – this is the objective of the non-profit foundation SDBI. SDBI is taking a leading, groundbreaking role in design with the help of its European Fashion Award FASH, its communications efforts, publications and extensive industry network.
The goal of SDBI is to enhance qualitative and substantial fashion design. We believe: The future of fashion in the Western world lies in meaningful products, whose identity as infused by the designer is preserved. In contrast to the mass-production of our globalized world, SDBI aims for strategic design management focusing on the integration of product development, communication and distribution. SDBI is investing into an education based on these values. SDBI’s European Fashion Award FASH is considered one of the most important fashion design newcomer awards in the world thanks to its tradition, fairness, strictly professional orientation, challenging selection of topics, high-calibre jury, elaborate selection process, its documentation, and last but not least, the career development of its winners.
The Spotlight Is On the Students
The European Fashion Award FASH is different: The award is not a marketing tool for companies, products or locations, but a way to shine a spotlight on the students and their projects.
Instead of focusing solely on the results, the award challenges the best of the best. FASH asks for the student’s own point of view based on an annually changing theme. Research and strong concepts have to reflect social, economic, as well as cultural and political processes. This results in outstanding collections and elaborate documentation of the research with the students’ own photographs. This way not only the visualization but also the verbal expression is stimulating, and encourages out-of-the-box thinking.
The documentation of award-winning projects is archived at the Sammlung Modebild – Lipperheidesche Kostümbibliothek, Kunstbibliothek, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (Lipperheide Costume Library, National Museums in Berlin).
SDBI’s goal is to bring new substance into design education. To do so, professional and specialized encouragement is needed. The international and segment-overlapping advisory board and award juries meet these particular requirements. The jury decisions have been used widely on an academic level. This shows that SDBI is able to impact and affect the work of students and universities. The particular key assets are a clear conceptual design, well-structured organization, communication, documentation, jury, schools and media.
Winners Benefit From The Powerful SDBI Network
In order to be able to foster fashion students SDBI has formed important partnerships. It is the leading force and central hub for a network of schools, trade fairs, media, commerce and companies. Above and beyond the praises of SDBI’s excellent organization, the foundation continues to learn and develop itself by implementing an active and dynamic strategy. Of particular importance are fair and transparent rules of competition according to the standards of the International Council of Societies and Industrial Design (ICSID) and Association of Industrial Designers (Verband der Industrie Designer – VDID). Winners benefit from in-depth coaching during the competition process and beyond winning an award.
SDBI Award Winners Go Far
The public relations and communications network of SDBI exposes the winners to leading domestic and foreign newspapers, internet, trade press, talk shows and TV. SDBI supports and prepares the winners for these interviews.
The most relevant achievement of the European Fashion Award FASH is the strengthening of the winners’ confidence. FASH generates a starting point for these students to help them develop their career at internationally
renowned companies like Adidas, Akris, Craft, Esprit, John Galliano, Girbaud, Quiksilver, Puma, Schumacher, Strenesse, Designers as Lala Berlin, Ross Lovegrove, Vivienne Westwood, Antonio Marras and Bernhard Willhelm – some of them already hold positions as head or senior designers.
SDBI relies on excellent design, strong brand image and credible communication to reflect this challenge. SDBI has been honored for its design with several awards, such as the Joseph Binder Award, Bronze (2006) or the nomination for the Design Award 2008 of the Federal Republic of Germany.
The Bureau Joachim Schirrmacher, Berlin and Christof Nardin, Bueronardin, Vienna, are responsible for the design of SDBI.
History since 1978
SDBI is a public foundation subject to civil law and of legal status located in Munich, officially named “Stiftung der Deutschen Bekleidungsindustrie zur Förderung der Ausbildung von Nachwuchskräften in der Modebranche” (transl.: German Fashion Industry Foundation to Foster a New Generation of Fashion Designers).
Its purpose is the promotion and further education of exceptionally talented students in the fashion industry. Professor Klaus Steilmann, Ph.D.eng., HC., the winner of the 1977 fashion prize awarded by the City of Munich, founded SDBI with his award money in 1978. At the time, Steilmann was Europe’s largest manufacturer of womenswear. As of 1978 a selected small group of talented students was supported by the financial subsidies of the foundation. No public relation work or additional support was given.
In an act of legal succession, Messe München took over the management of the foundation on a pro bono basis in 1996. In 2004 Messe München appointed the Creative Consultant Joachim Schirrmacher to head the operation. Since then, SDBI has undergone major changes to face the challenges created by an increasingly more global, faster, and more complex world of fashion. SDBI has sent out an annual call for entries for the European Fashion Award FASH since 2004; the competition was expanded to a global level in 2011.
In 2008 the foundation’s charitable work was honoured with an award as part of the German goverment and commerce initiative “Deutschland – Land der Ideen” / “Germany Land Of Ideas”. The Laudatory stated: “Visions, creativity and passion are the components, with which SDBI sets sustainable signals for the future in the otherwise fast-moving fashion world.”
The Founder of Stiftung der Deutschen Bekleidungsindustrie
The founder of SDBI – Stiftung der Deutschen Bekleidungsindustrie (German Fashion Industry Foundation) – Prof. h.c. Dr.-Ing. h.c. Klaus Steilmann (1929 – 2009) was a personality with great influence on the German economy. Here in Germany he was better known to many as President of the Football Association “SG Wattenscheid 09”. Under the motto “Fashion for the Masses, not Millionaires”, his company, founded in 1958, grew quickly – and established itself as Europe’s largest fashion manufacturer in the mid-Eighties. In 1991, at its peak, the Steilmann Group employed 18,000 people and posted sales of 1.88 billion Deutsche Mark. Klaus Steilmann supplied large retail chains like C&A, Peek&Cloppenburg, Karstadt, Kaufhof and Marks & Spencer, but also sold fashions under his own name. He collaborated with Karl Lagerfeld. In 1999 Klaus Steilmann withdrew from the position of company chairman. Facing insolvency in 2006, the Steilmann Group was acquired by the Italian fashion syndicate Radici.
Klaus Steilmann was a role model and a genuine entrepreneur. His demanding personality not only influenced his own company, but had an impact way beyond. He strove to create a fusion of economy, ecology and social awareness, and supported first class education and development opportunities. Klaus Steilmann was convinced that society also needs people who swim against the current. His credo: “Society does not have responsibility for its people; people are responsible for their society”.
Fostering A New Generation
In 1978 Klaus Steilmann founded the Stiftung der Deutschen Bekleidungsindustrie (German Fashion Industry Foundation) with the goal to foster underprivileged and talented young fashion designers. Since then SDBI has offered many young people an opportunity to grow in this demanding industry that was so important to Klaus Steilmann. Klaus Steilmann’s work went way beyond his original goals, and still has an enduring impact on the further development of fashions, allowing us to experience the resulting inspiration today and in the future. In addition to his activity at SDBI, in 1990 he began to work closely with scientific institutions on industrial policies, ecological and economical issues. He became involved in the University of Witten-Herdecke and the Center of Entrepreneurship and Management Development Moscow’s Lomonossov University. In addition, Klaus Steilmann was very understanding and supported a number of people who approached him directly; he even provided for a Master’s degree at the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London.
Acting on personal conviction, Klaus Steilmann began to work on system-overlapping and networked solutions to reduce the environmental impact of his companies in 1989. This included the development of ecological quality standards, an environmental management concept, eco-audits, worldwide retraining of suppliers, products sourced from pesticide-free wool, chlorine-free viscose and hemp, the “Fun in the Sun” collection with proven UV-protection, the eco-friendly collection “Britta Steilmann – It’s one world”, and more. Once again, Klaus Steilmann’s goal was not to produce eco-friendly apparel for millionaires, but healthy and sustainable fashions for the masses. In addition, Klaus Steilmann bestowed the academic chair for environmental policy at the Private University of Witten-Herdecke, and founded the Klaus Steilmann Institute for Innovation and Ecology (Klaus Steilmann Institut für Innovation und Umwelt) in 1991. A number of studies, such as on bio-degradable apparel, or research projects like “Von der Ökonische zum ökologischen Massenmarkt – Ecological Mass Textiles” (focusing on the development of ecologically optimized polyester) were performed. Furthermore, he applied his influence as the President of the European Largest Textile and Apparel Companies (ELTAC) and later EURATEX (The European Apparel and Textile Organisation) to develop and enforce environmental standards. This makes Klaus Steilmann – together with Heinz Hess (Hess Nature) and Dr. Michael Otto (Otto-Group) – one of our country’s most influential pioneers working to create a sustainable economy and establishing the necessary global foundations.
Klaus Steilmann received a number of awards in honor of his work:
1977 Fashion Award of the City of Munich
1984 Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany
1992 Induction in the Club of Rome
1993 Honorary Doctorate University of Witten-Herdecke
1994 Honorary Recipient of the German Culture Award
1999 German Environmental Award
Klaus Steilmann — the winner of the Fashion Award 1977
City of Munich – Fashion Week Director Alfred Wurm introduced the winner of the Fashion Award 1977 presented by the Bavarian capital, Klaus Steilmann, to the press as a prototype for a modern entrepreneur, setting international, trendsetting standards for the apparel industry and successfully producing fashions for consumers with modest income.
According to the words of Mayor Gittel, the social component in Steilmann’s business concept was the deciding factor for the presentation of the award, held by the City of Munich for the 10th time. Munich’s city council, acting as the selection committee, unanimously voted for Steilmann. Textile retail also collectively agreed with the decision. As commented by Otto Büchler, the association’s president, Klaus Steilmann has always provided retail with new ideas thanks to quick-thinking fashion inspiration. This presented the completion of a circle for Klaus Steilmann, as his major breakthrough had happened in Munich many years ago. When interviewed by journalists, he explained that he never had the ambition to become one of the initiators of fashion, but rather to take into account what consumers wanted. His seven companies and 23 plants strive to find a consistent message while offering a varied product portfolio.
Thanks to closely involving his management employees and their above-average contribution in the business group’s success he was able to fuse them into an enthusiastic team willing and able to create market-friendly collections. In 1961 he began to share 25% of profits with his commercial employees. The benefits are determined by personal performance and attendance.
Orders placed in low-cost countries have only a limited significance in Steilmann’s concept. They are used to complement the product selection in the lower price ranges and account for about 10% of total revenues. Steilmann uses suppliers in third-world countries only if it qualifies as “safe fashions”.
This year Klaus Steilmann expects overall revenue totaling 380 million Deutsche Mark and a price increase of about 4%. He believes that his plants will be working to capacity until the end of November. Following an investment of 5 million Deutsche Mark the year before, he is planning to invest close to 4 million in 1977.
Source: TextilWirtschaft, April 14, 1977
Publication authorized by Deutscher Fachverlag