Young fashion professionals and money! Where to get funding, about competitions, open calls and more...
Spending time with my friends - designers, I'm more and more aware what kind of struggles are these creatives going through. Using almost all their income for the fashion shows, materials, promotion, models, fittings, pop-ups… You name it! And that’s why I think any kind effort of support is needed. Young creatives, in general, are going through hard times. There is always a question how sustainable is your project, how much time you can and should spend working on it and where is the line between cool artsy life and a pure desperation of starving young artist.
As a fashion journalist from fashion platform Fashion MAP, I'm always curious what's new, how to get the right information – not only about the designers to the broader audience but especially connecting designers with the right opportunities. In Fashion MAP we are also trying to support the local scene, and highlight the best fashion professionals in the area. Since Fashion MAP is in Czech language only, I gathered some information, that might be useful to the broader group – maybe you have heard about it all long time ago, maybe not. ;)
So which ways can be the most effective to take?
1. Fashion Week Competitions
Local Fashion Weeks – spring edition of MBPFW is ahead, bringing up the new wave of local designers. All the young talents can apply for the VAN GRAAF JUNIOR TALENT2017 competition till18.1.2017 – more info over here.
Every fashion week has its own way, how to support the fresh young blood. An interesting one came up from the European Union and the Hungarian government cooperation.
Fashion Week in Budapest – which evolved into Fashion Week Central Europe was presenting my friend and one of the greatest young designer ODIVI. If you are a designer from Central Europe, you should get more information about Gombolt Ujra- the talent showcase competition among Visegrad countries among with Serbia and Croatia.
Just get in touch with the local fashion council- I think it's a great opportunity to get more attention, mentoring and even win an of a package worth of 10 000EUR . Fashion Week Central Europe showcases designers from different Visegrad countries. Czech republic was this year represented by a dear friend of mine ODIVI. (yes, I'm wearing her clothing on these pics from the last MBPFW shot by Létoslav Chromek <3)
I was having blast time with ODIVI also in Munich, at the Marlboro fashion train party- seems like multiple companies feel like joining the artist and fashion movement. Marlboro put a finger on the innovation process, showcasing new techniques and materials. An invited bunch of cool (ehm ehm ;) ) people put them into the train and gave them a topic to talk about – future of fashion. That brings me to the question, which other big businesses, that has nothing to do with a fashion at the first glance, will in the future join this trend? It seems normal that Fashion Weeks are sponsored by Mercedes Benz – but the cigarettes company was a totally new thing to me.
It would be for sure great if bigger companies would support local independent designers, new technologies, and hubs.
2. Open calls
Any fashion creative person knows the struggle and therefore open calls can be something you are waiting for. These are mostly oriented already on fashion professionals or young postgraduates.
The international Fashion site NAJL about emerging designers is always very useful source with good tips. Check it over here
The business of Fashion started with their new project called VOICES – it s an invitation-only event bringing together the young future thinker and doers of fashion scene with the entrepreneurs and people who are already shaping the scene for years. The positive thing is that this competition is helping not only designers, but the wider range of future fashion professionals to get in touch with real the industry. The price for 10 winners is a year-long program that includes mentorship, access to industry events and the chance to work closely with the teams at Topshop and BoF. So try to participate next year- I think it's worth it. ;)
It's true that Hight street fashion seems to be opposite to local production or the creative young designer world. But the truth is that companies like H&M are at least trying to contribute to the business in a better way. Good example is
H&M design award or the Global Change Award. Both super cool to try! Global change award is probably even more interesting – influencing the materials and to be the innovator must feel really good. Not mentioning the price of1 million of EUR and access to a one-year innovation accelerator provided by H&M Foundation, Accenture and KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm.
Not only for designers and creatives deserve some help – there is a special funding from the European Union called ERASMUS targeting at the young entrepreneurs in any area, sharing the information and learning the skills with the longer established host entrepreneurs. I think this idea is just great, and everybody who hasn’t started his business longer than three years ago, (that's the condition) should definitely try that! I did ;)
I hope my tips have landed over there and will help somebody to reach out his next goal this years or maybe at least wider the range of the opportunities waiting for those ones, who are ready to come out from the comfort zones - at least a bit. ;)
photo: Létoslav Chromek