J. Mendel Is Cooper-Hewitt Fashion Design Award Winner

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Designer Gilles Mendel with Taylor Swift at the 2011 Costume Institute Gala

Let's hear it for J. Mendel.

Gilles Mendel's celebrity-adored label has bested finalists Jason Wu and Prabal Gurung to claim the Fashion Design Award at the 2011 National Design Awards from the Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum.

Mendel will receive his award at an Oct. 20 gala dinner in New York City, with First Lady Michelle Obama serving as an Honorary Patron.

Fashion designer Lela Rose was among the judges for this year's awards, which also recognize achievements in product design, landscape architecture, interiors, and more.

"As the nation's design museum, Cooper-Hewitt raises awareness that design is everywhere," Cooper-Hewitt director Bill Moggridge said in a press statement. "The work of this year's National Design Awards winners represents extraordinary solutions to the design problems central to the landscape of daily life, from how we dress, shape our personal and private spaces, frame communication, and interact with the world at large."

For the award honoring work in clothing, accessory, or footwear design, Mendel was singled out for "his penchant for maintaining the highest standards while manipulating luxury fabrics in unexpected ways [which] has attracted top-tier clients who appreciate his timeless, cutting-edge and exquisitely produced fashions."

Well done! We're raising our (virtual) champagne glass in tribute.