Canada vs New Zealand. And also Chicago.
There is an article in the NY Times today on Chicago’s plan to help boost it’s local fashion industry. The mayor is involved, and he has hired someone full time to help local designers. He wants to promote Chicago as a fashion destination and keep talented designers in Chicago.
When I worked as a fashion buyer I used to get promotional material from the New Zealand government promoting New Zealand fashion designers. They would send really great, really expensive looking packages that were well designed and glossy to buyers all over the world. It had all the info you needed to contact the designers. They were helping designers do business. And I repeat: the government did this. I was just checking out their Trade and enterprise website and it seemed easy to navigate and it looks like there are a lot of programs made accessible to designers.
When I tried to search the Industry Canada website for information that might be helpful to Canadian designers, I got lost. I found some info for large scale manufacturing, but this seems like a bit of a lost cause, spending a lot of money trying to protect our manufacturing industry while not providing support for designers who some day might need the services of a manufacturer. When I tried to search the website for anything design related, a message popped up on the site that said An error has occurred. I’ll say.
Karen Walker Fall/Winter 07