When I was in high school I had dreams of one day becoming a fashion designer. I knew at that point, that the industry was tough to crack into. The competition is fierce and, like most creative professions, you need support. The Art of Fashion (AoF) is a great organization that I’ve been tracking over the past few years. Modelled after fashion hubs in New York, Paris and Milan, AoF’s goal is to support the professional development of emerging designers. The organization is driven by industry supporters and volunteers. It not only gives designers direction but it also exposes them to mentorship program with current established designers like Farley Chatto.
Aside for year-round support, the AoF holds an annual design competition featuring some of the most talented artists in the country. This year’s competition was held in Toronto with 9 designers featured and hundreds of fashion media and influencers in attendance. The event themed “Past Behaviour” was hosted by Fashion Television’s Glen Baxter and judges of the competition included the likes of Leesa Butler, president of Divine Lab Inc., Adrian Wu, Fashion Designer, Derek Dotto, Associate Producer, CityTV, Fashion Writer and a few others.
The winner of the competition walks away with mentoring sessions, photoshoots with magazines, assistance with publicity efforts like press releases, press kits, and distribution as well as a lookbook, and more.
I still get butterflies when these events happen because you know that the winner of the competition will have a decent launching pad to their career.
The winner of the 2013 Design Competition will be announced at the Royal Ontario Museum on October 18th as part of their wildly successful Friday Night Live event series.
You can read about all the designers here at artoffashion.org
We wish all the designers the best of luck in this competition! It’s going to be a tough decision!