In the fourth annual LVMH Prize, finalists from Japan, Europe and USA will battle it out for €300,000 (Dh1.2 million) winnings and a year-long mentorship.

A record-breaking 1,200 people applied from all over the world.

Cecilie Bahnsen, who takes ­inspiration from traditional craft techniques like quilting, patchwork and embroidery, is the first Danish designer to make the final.

She was shortlisted by a panel of 45 experts – including designers, buyers, editors, photographers and models Karlie Kloss and Kendall Jenner – at a showcase during Paris Fashion Week.

"This was a really important moment, and putting together that presentation was a bit of a labour of love," says Bahnsen. "I especially enjoyed the conversation I had with Nicolas Ghesquière [of Louis Vuitton]."

Looking ahead to the final, she says is nervous, but also excited.

"Being part of this process has been really eye opening and ­really positive," she says.

Other finalists include Yoon Ahn – a Korean-American ­designer based in Tokyo who designs unisex collections under the name of Ambush; Kozaburo Akasaka – a Japanese menswear designer in New York; two French womenswear designers, Antonin Tron (fashion label ­Atlein) and Marine Serre.

Russia’s Maria Kazakova, who runs her Jahnkoy menswear label in New York, had to talk the panel through her collection via Skype on an iPad as her lawyer had advised her not to leave the United States because of visa issues.

The UK’s Molly Goddard, known for her voluminous tulle dresses, meanwhile, submitted footage from her London fashion show – a dinner party setting for her models – to show off her clothes.

She says the process of elimination to get to the finals has proven very valuable.

"Getting constructive feedback really made me think about my aims and achievements in a new and challenging way," she says.

"I am very nervous about the big finale. I get nervous when public speaking so I’m hoping I don’t mess up."

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