The Fashion Law Exclusive - Christopher Shannon just beat out fellow "it" Brit-based menswear designers Lou Dalton, Richard Nicoll, Christopher Raeburn, and E Tautz for the inaugural British Fashion Council x GQ Designer Menswear Fund. Shannon, a Central Saint Martins grad, who is known for his subversive, sporty and distinctly East London take on streetwear, will be taking home a £150,000 grant, as well as £50,000 worth of expert mentoring from the competition's financial sponsor, Vertu. Speaking to GQ prior to his win, Shannon said: "I think I have developed a really modern brand that has global potential. Everything we have achieved has been quite organic and now the company is at a size where it requires a bit more strategy. It's about being a bit more grown up and focused without losing the excitement and the ideas. Without realising it, I've built a brand with a really recognisabe DNA and signatures, and now I want to work into those further and expand our offering." As for how the win will help his brand, Shannon says: "It would mean that we could put our plans into action sooner and more effectively, with finesse."
The shortlisted designers pitched their business plans to a judging panel today. According to the judging panel, each of the shortlisted designers is in a strong position to develop into a global designer brand and ready for the level of support the fund offers. Shannon, in particular, launched his eponymous label in 2010, staging his A/W 2010 collection thanks to the sponsorship from NEWGEN MEN, a program launched by the British Fashion Council and Topman for supporting up-and-coming British menswear designers.