Labrum London has won the Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design for 2023. King Charles III handed the award to Foday Dumbuya in front of the press, industry insiders, and fashion talent to recognize the good effect of the British Fashion Council Foundation and its activities.
“I set out to create pieces that are not only beautiful, they also empower local communities by preserving their culture,” Dumbuya stated as he dedicated his medal to the Sierra Leonean artisans and craftsman who have inspired his work.
Foday Dumbuya originally became interested in design at a young age since his mother wore traditional African clothing and his father worked in law enforcement. At the university, he majored in information design, and at Nike, he took his first steps into the world of fashion. He initially dabbled with fashion at Nike, developing custom designs for the world’s largest sportswear company, following an internship at Siemens. His label, LABRUM, examines both British and West African history while linking the two.
Before announcing Labrum as the winner, His Majesty stated in a speech: “I just wanted to use this moment to congratulate all those who I know are working so hard having been through their colleges and done all their courses, and received some help at least from the British Fashion Council Foundation. I do hope you do really well, and I shall be watching – from a distance.”
The Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design was founded in 2018, and has been won by Richard Quinn, Bethany Williams, Rosh Mahtani, Priya Ahluwalia and Saul Nash. It highlights designers who make a difference to society through sustainable practices or community engagement.