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Talking fashion with TFI: What buyers Want


I was lucky to have an invitation to another fact-filled seminar by the Toronto Fashion Incubator. Previously, I attended the "Working with Stylist" presentation presentation. While this seminar isn't part of the series aimed at emerging designers the information was valuable to all.

The vibrant and straight talking Arie Assaraf was the lone panelist. Arie is the brains behind the very successful TNT-The New Trend. I browse there occasionally, drooling over the clothes and hoping the sales staff don't notice. He is a passionate man. He had a lot of great advice to give. This man is a straight shooter; there wasn't a hint of bullshit in any of his comments. He was an excellent panelist and he had no problems explaining himself. There were a couple times where he was so excited he was swearing. It was awesome.

Arie was very adamant when he said that integrity and honesty is one of the most important things you can have in the business. There isn't much of either in the industry and when people come across it they do remember. He mentioned that you need a long-term vision as a designer, without that you are lost. It's important to start out small and expand at a reasonable pace. Good sales in ten stores are much better than poor sales in thirty. Your relationships with your retailers also play an important part.

The Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI) is a non-profit organization, which is a small business centre for promoting and mentoring new fashion designers and entrepreneurs. TFI has just launched TFI-TV, a web TV station for Canada's fashion designers. It's a paid subscription service that provides 24/7 access to a multimedia library featuring international fashion experts. There are exclusive e-seminars, interviews and audio updates on industry events. Members will be able to connect to industry experts. Much of the information will be available for download.
The next seminar is the second of a six part series is "Working with the Media" on November 16, 2006. There are spots available for the in house attendance option and plenty of spaces for the webcast.

On November 10th and 11th, Toronto fashion designers Juma, Karamea and Nada are holding a sample sale to raise funds for the Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI). Hours on each night are from 4:00pm - 8:00pm at Boutique Le Trou, 940 Queen Street West. Enjoy complimentary refreshments and hors d'oeuvres. This sample sale has sizes ranging from 2 - 12. In addition to clothing, Jennifer Reily's jewelry will be on display and for sale.


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