SA Fashion Week (SAFW) Italian and South African institutions have come together for the “Fashion Bridges – I Ponti Della Moda” project which has been launched to establish a long-term partnership between the two fashion-loving nations.
WHO IS INVOLVED IN ‘FASHION BRIDGES’?
The Italian embassy alongside the Italian Trade Agency, Nelson Mandela Forum Firenze, Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana, Polimoda, Centro di Firenze per la Moda Italiana and Lineapelle are all collaborating with SAFW in this project that will see the encouragement of cultural exchange and supporting budding young designers.
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT?
The project aims to favour talent recruitment by establishing academic cooperation between some of the major fashion schools in the two countries.
It’s split into three sections, the ‘Cradle of fashion,’ ‘Young lions’ and ‘Mining for fashion materials and tools’. SAFW and Polimoda have picked three graduates from South African fashion schools and three from the Florence-based institution to offer a virtual training program that’s developed by Polimoda with the support of the Italian fashion chamber.
The six selected designers will be paired to develop joint capsule collections, which will be presented during the Milan Fashion Week in September and SAFW the following month.
There will also be discussions and business-to-business meetings between South African and Italian companies operating in the fashion and textile industry.
HELPING YOUNG DESIGNERS
‘Fashion Bridges’ will also help young established brands by selecting a designer per country and assisting them in identifying business opportunities in both markets as well as establish contact with local agents.
In October, buyers and producers of raw materials like fabrics, leather and textile machinery will meet in Johannesburg for an event that’s aimed at enhancing the technical skills and supply chains of the fashion industries in both South Africa and Italy, with themes ranging from quality to sustainability in fashion.
To promote all these projects in place and to provide information about all the parties involved – a virtual visual diary has been created which will showcase the stories behind each designer and follow their respective brand’s development.