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‘Making the Cut’ Designers Tout Sustainable, Gender-Optional, Planet-Conscious Fashion

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Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn will bring their sartorial insights back to the small screen this summer when “Making the Cut” begins streaming its second season on July 16.

The Amazon Original fashion-design reality show plucked 10 global designers to showcase their talents and compete for a $1 million prize to elevate their brand, in addition to a mentorship with Amazon Fashion—where the winner also has a chance to sell a collection. Streaming on Amazon Prime Video and filmed in Los Angeles, the eight-episode show will release two installments each week documenting the exploits and fashion foibles of its “visionary designers and entrepreneurs” jockeying for the chance to send their collection down the runway in the “epic” finale, airing on Aug. 6.

Supermodel Winnie Harlow and Moschino creative chief Jeremy Scott appear as regular judges throughout the season, joined by guest judges including costume designer and celebrity stylist Shiona Turini—who has collaborated with Calvin Klein and Kate Spade—and design icon Prabal Gurung.

The tech giant will maintain its tradition of allowing viewers to own the show’s top looks, whose limited quantities quickly sold out last season. The winning design from each episode will be available for shoppers to purchase the next day through Amazon Fashion’s Making the Cut storefront. After demand for season one’s styles drove items to sell out in less than two days, Amazon said it’s boosting “availability” this time around so consumers can “watch it and wear it.”

Amazon has given season one’s winner, Jonny Cota, considerable opportunities to court consumers, tapping the designer for a collection with The Drop that demonstrated the company’s singular expertise to merge content, clothing and commerce.

Meet the designers

Hailing from five different countries, the new cohort of up-and-coming designs brings diverse design perspectives to the table. Los Angeles native Ally Ferguson cut her teeth at G Star Raw and Ed Hardy before founding Seeker—a “gender and age-inclusive, locally sourced, sustainable, organic hemp fashion label”—in 2016.

Brooklyn’s Andrea Pitter has spent the past decade dressing to-be-weds in her Pantora Bridal label. The Fashion Institute of Technology grad and Black entrepreneur also aims to increase representation throughout the industry.

Andrea Salazar brings her Colombian roots and British education to bear in SETA, the label she founded at age 22 after completing a master’s degree in international business in Brazil. Salazar moved to Miami to nurture SETA, which has appeared on the New York and Paris Fashion Week runways.

Ten new designers on Amazon Original's 'Making the Cut' will showcase "planet-conscious" and non-binary fashion on Amazon Prime this July.

Ten global designers are competing for the top $1 million prize on ‘Making the Cut.’

Based in Jaipur, India, Dushyant Asthana began experimenting with fashion by tinkering with his father’s 1960s and 1970s-era garments. Channeling an East-meets-West aesthetic influenced by India’s rich colors, textiles and art, Asthana designs “clothes for a global audience” from his current base in Los Angeles.

Franklin, N.Y.’s Gary Graham describes his approach to designing fashion as a “material culture of elegance and decay.” The designer’s ready-to-wear collections, known for engineered jacquards, knitwear, intricate detailing, embroidery and his own signature prints, have appeared in stores like Barneys New York and Dover Street Market.

Born in Italy and now based in London, former footballer Joshua Scacheri honed his design chops in Australia, where the label he founded in 2006 became a “go-to brand for menswear.” With stints at Britain’s top heritage brands under his belt, Scacheri precise tailoring and thoughtful design have appeared on global catwalks. The designer’s appearance on “Making the Cut” will inaugurate the launch of his “planet conscious clothing brand,” Love Hero.

Mixed-media prints and penchant for outerwear distinguish the designs of South Orange, N.J.’s Lendrell Martin, a Drexel University fashion design grad recognized by the Obama Foundation for his community-building efforts.

Parisian designer Lucie Brochard merges French, Vietnamese and Korean cultural influences in the design aesthetic she cultivated in part through her tenure with luxury houses like Christian Lacroix and Chloe. Her eponymous brand has traversed runways in Paris and Seoul and is distributed in the U.S., Korea, Lebanon and Germany.

Three months after graduating from Parsons New School, Olivia Oblanc launched her unisex Øblanc fashion brand, which aims to sustainably reinterpret workwear functionality by repurposing denim and recycling textile scraps. The New Orleans native collaborated with Adidas Originals and Kendall Jenner on a collection in 2018.

Polish native Raf Swiader tapped his experience in New York women’s wear and L.A. men’s wear when launching the “gender-optional” R.Swiader line. The Fashion Institute of Technology grad opened his first Manhattan boutique in 2016, which now offers a “clubhouse-like space” for his fans and followers.

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