24 Hours Later: Christine Brooks-Cropper of the Greater Washington Fashion Chamber of Commerce on The Future of DC Fashion
Last week we brought together 9 panelists who are catalysts for a bigger and better DC fashion community (read more about The Future of DC Fashion panel). We’ve asked our panelists to give us their post-panel thoughts on where the industry is going and what we can do to help grow it.
Panelist Christine Brooks-Cropper is spearheading a fashion initiative that will change the way the world will view Washington, DC. She launched The Greater Washington Fashion Chamber of Commerce and co-Chaired the first Creative Economy Summit under the leadership of Councilmember Michael A. Brown. Christine is a change agent and innovative strategist for the Creative Economy… Here are her thoughts:
1. DC has come a long way but we still have much work to do…
2. The fashion community needs to come together and unite a little better to help put the infrastructure in place with regards to education and training. A lot of the emerging designers of DC need formal training… and the trained designers need to step up and… start mentoring and provide apprenticeship so we can grow this industry.
3. The DC Fashion Incubator…provides studio space at 760 N Street NW for designers to start production and manufacturing so we can start to show we have an industry/trade in DC… The only way we can show fashion design in DC is by promoting and marketing that we have production. Apply [for the DC Fashion Incubator] on the www.gwfcc.org home page…
4. The Fashion Blog community is here to help!! People utilize them… Elizabeth [creator of CapFABB] has done an excellent job of getting 250 bloggers to create this community. Keep up the great work! So Much to Smile About.
5. We need a fashion grant or microfinance program for fashion designers in Washington, DC. Let’s figure out what type of process or structure is needed. This can be housed at the Arts Commission or possibly a function of the Commission on Fashion Arts and Events that was created by legislation in 2008. Just need the Mayor to appoint the Commissioners and get this Commission active.