Moving along with our 2020 FABYs Best of 2020, the next category is: Designer of the Year!

In no particular order and curated by our Fashion Bomb editorial team, we have rounded up nine nominees for Designer of the Year:

  1. Anifa Mvuemba of Hanifa

With no in-person fashion shows or events, Hanifa looked to more creative and innovative ways to introduce collections. Headed by Anifa Mvuemba, Hanifa ultimately shook up the fashion world with its virtual 3D runway show for its Pink Label Congo collection which ultimately sold out five days after its release.

Aside from their spectacular virtual show, Hanifa had many other notable moments throughout the year including magazine appearances and frequently popping up in celebrity style. The brand has graced Zendaya, Mary J. Blige, and even the iconic Carrie Bradshaw aka Sarah Jessica Parker.

2. Manfred Thierry Mugler

Thierry Mugler is the former designer of the French fashion label known as Mugler which is credited with being ahead of its time and one of the biggest molders of fashion industry as we know it today. While he has retired from the Mugler brand, he has stepped out to work with celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Cardi B for Mugler’s archives.

With the Mugler’s resurgence in popularity, the women of the celebrity world have been spotted in the brand’s archival looks and taken interest in Mugler’s current runway collections.

3. LaQuan Smith

LaQuan Smith and his self-named brand had quite the year! Kicking off the year, he previewed his Fall/Winter 2020 collection which ultimately caught everyone’s attention with its sexy night-out pieces and huge fur bags featuring phrases like “I’m Moving Out”. The Fall/Winter mesh and velvet jumpsuit became immensely popular with celebs as it has been spotted on Jennifer Lopez and Yung Miami from the City Girls.

LaQuan Smith has also appeared Solange, Lizzo, Kim Kardashian, and Megan Thee Stallion this year alone.

4. Christian Siriano

Even during his time on Project Runway, Christian Siriano has been providing us with many moments in fashion which will go down in history like Billy Porter’s tux dress and Janelle Monae’s 2019 Met Gala look.

This year, Christian Siriano made headlines with his 37th collection for SS21 which highlighted politics and other 2020 events through sophisticated-glam and Spring prints and patterns. Celebrities like Lizzo, Gwen Stefani, and Jennifer Lopez have all been spotted in his SS21 collection pieces.

5. Michael Costello

2019 FABYs Designer of the Year Michael Costello continues to prove his worthiness of his award even a year later! Even during the year of 2020, Michael Costello wow’d with his gowns and night-out garments which provide the wearer with the ultimate sexy elegance.

Michael Costello’s pieces have graced celebrities like Mariah Carey, Beyoncé, and Jennifer Lopez this year alone!

6. Ralph & Russo

Ralph and Russo is known for creating magical and mesmerizing opulence, leaving their clients looking like empowered royalty. Delicate fabrics like satin and tulle and intricate embellishments like crystals and feathers follow their designs delivering luxury and femininity.

Ralph and Russo had created more dreams this year with celebrities like Ciara, Rita Ora, and Kylie Jenner.

7. Zuhair Murad

Despite losing its fashion house in Beruit and cancelling shows due to the global health crisis, Zuhair Murad still managed to create magic and new memories with its designs this year!

Zuhair Murad became a favorite of Kerry Washington’s this year, appearing on her three separate occasions including the Democratic National Convention and the 2020 Oscars! The label also was spotted on Tracee Ellis Ross, the Hadid sisters, and Jennifer Lopez.

8. Balmain by Oliver Rousteing

With Olivier Rousteing as Balmain’s creative director, Balmain became almost every lady celebs favorite! Under Balmain, Olivier Rousteing solidified close relationships with Beyoncé and the Kardashian-Jenner sisters who he frequently uses as his muses for the brand.

Olivier Rousteing’s most recent workings came in the Balmain from 1945 collection where he taps into Pierre Balmain 1970 archives for the designer’s original monogram. The collection quickly became celeb-approved hit!

9. Versace by Donatella Versace

Versace under Donatella Versace continues to be a vision in the world of fashion. The brand stays true to its roots carrying out its signature tropical and regal prints while incorporating new, modern designs as well.

Versace by Donatella Versace had so many moments this year including appearances on Lil Was X and Lizzo for the Grammys, Jennifer Lopez for the Super Bowl 2020, and Cynthia Erivo and Regina King for the Oscars. Not to mention, Versace had a viral moment for its highly inclusive and diverse SS21 show which include a range of models from many backgrounds of society.

Now, it is your turn to cast your vote for who you think should be crowned as the 2020 FABYs Designer of the Year: