Sunday, February 21, 2010

Fashion fair and the faith
of young designers

Today I defied masses of snow and sporadic commuter traffic for a trip to the annual Fresh fish fashion fair, that showcases Swedish up-and-coming designers. It has been running for four years now and I have planned to attend every year, but this was the first time that I actually managed to.

Around 30 designers were showing samples from their autumn/winter 2010 collection. First I have to say it does feel a little mind boggling to see stuff for next winter when this winter isn't over yet, but such is the cycle of fashion. Secondly my responses towards the displayed designs ranged from wow to meh. Making desirable and visionary clothes is hard, period. Though I did see a few things that really impressed me -there were some very visionary pattern cutting displayed for instance.

But the one thing that I kept thinking about was where will all these young designers (and their fabulous hairdos, I saw a lot of great hair today) be in 10 years? Will they have their own successful line, will they be working for H&M or perhaps given up and left the fashion field entirely?

Making it in the fashion world seems so heart achingly difficult that I am often amazed that folks are brave enough to give it a go. We just have to look at the faith of some of the Project Runway winners - sometimes talent, exposure and funding are not enough to make it. I guess the biggest hurdle is the fact that most designers want to do high end fashion - an area which has the smallest buyer pool. On the other hand there are stories of people coming from nowhere and making it. Like the young Swedish brand Minimarket, where three sisters in their early 20's with, I believe, little or no formal fashion training, has become a big success in just a few years. So it can certainly happen, but cracking that code seems very elusive. So we'll see if one of young folks I saw today will be the next big thing in 5 years. I sure hope so!


  1. The fashion fair sounds like lots of fun. I'm glad you braved the snow and posted some pictures for us.

    Perhaps you should share information about the second garment pictured with Kathleen at Fashion-Incubator. It looks like the type of garment she'd feature in her Pattern Puzzle series. That skirt is just amazing.

  2. >>LisaB: Yes it is absolutely fantastic, I kept coming back to it. You know I think it is pretty simple, construction wise, just strips of felt that are pieced together, but the end result is just stunning.

  3. Thanks for sharing. The creative vision is inspiring.