Thursday, 2 July 2009

Getting Organisation-ized: the third mentoring Salon

It may be hotter than Bangkok here in London but it didn't deter the designers from our third mentoring Salon - they arrived in force with humidity defying coiffures (thank God for hairspray) to hear guest speakers representing a variety of different organisations that all have something to offer emerging designers.

First up, Annabel Lui from Knowledge Connect. Knowledge Connect is a programme that connects small to medium sized businesses to the experts at London's universities, further education colleges and research and technology organisations. If successful you can receive £3,000 - £10,000 as a grant that pays for an expert’s time working on your project. 

Next Jason Caine from the Centre for Fashion Enterprise. The CFE is based at the London College of Fashion and is a business development programme that works with early stage fashion companies in London. They have assisted designers such as Richard Nicoll, Hannah Marshall, Marios Schwab, Basso & Brooke and Julia Clancey. 

Thirdly Paul Alger from UK Fashion Exports. The organisation can help designers to obtain grants to exhibit overseas through the Government's Tradeshow Access programme. As the export division of The UK Fashion and Textile Association they give help and advice on how to achieve sales in overseas markets.

Lastly we heard from Chris Hall and Wendy Smith from the Fashion and Textile Museum which runs a series of inexpensive summer courses and short courses teaching key skills such as Illustrator, Photoshop and Kaledo Style. In addition there are courses in handbag and shoe design - sounds fun! 

They also have space in the shop at the museum for designers to retail their work - which is well worth a visit when attempting to purchase gifts for stylish (i.e. picky) individuals. HK

Main image: Chris Hall from the Fashion & Textile Museum and Martyn Roberts, Director of Vauxhall Fashion Scout.

"Mmmm spicy" - the nachos are a hit...