It was another fashion affair in the offices of Shopfiy this past week. Fashion Group International (FGI) Toronto was presenting the FGI Fashion Visionary Award to one of Canada’s most prolific voices in the industry – Robin Kay.
A self-taught designer, Kay ran a successful brand for 25 years, holding 600 wholesale accounts across North America and 22 stores across the country. But, she didn’t stop there; Kay went to pioneer Toronto Fashion Week (TFW) in Canada. In 2012, she transferred ownership of TFW to focus her efforts on president of the Fashion Design Council of Canada (FDCC), to push for the support and growth of the country’s industry.
Canada’s fashion icon Jeanne Beker moderated the event showcasing Kay’s insight on today’s environment.
A stronger fashion industry
The one thing (there were many, but this one tugged on a heart string) that really hit home with me during Kay’s interview, was her alluding to when an industry falls, engagement from other groups fosters creativity – which is exactly what the Canadian market needs more than ever.
As of late, the industry has been in a state of chaos. With IMG announcing the cancellation of TFW early last year, many in the industry were distraught about the outcome this would have on the Canadian designers and our country as a style destination. The U.S. election and its impact on international affairs, has made it so that the fashion industry is now – more than ever – experiencing turbulence, both in business and seen in designers’ work.
With that however, groups such as the Canadian Arts and Fashion Awards (CAFA), Toronto Men’s Fashion Week (TOM*) and Fashion Art Toronto (FAT) are becoming more present in the absence of TFW and an environment of collaboration and engagement is starting to spark.
This is key in creating the foundation of a market that not only draws in the consumer to Canadian made garments, but allows emerging designers to thrive.
Cole Douglas (@coledouglas7) is a Consultant with APEX Public Relations, specializing in the consumer and fashion space. If you’re looking magnify your brand and increase your market share in the retail industry, reach us at email@example.com