Erasmus University Rotterdam and Hogeschool Rotterdam partner with MARGREETH OLSTHOORN, Van Rijthoven Holding, NOT JUST A LABEL, Willem de Kooning Academy, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen and Het Nieuwe Instituut to analyse the case of Rotterdam-based designers.”last day of the exhibition The Future of Fashion is Now, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, the Erasmus University Rotterdam, Willem de Kooning Academy and Kenniscentrum Creating 010 join forces to organize the thematic afternoon program: Behind the scenes – The Future of Fashion in Rotterdam.
I was asked as guest speaker during the Roundtable
• Introduction to the exhibition by guest curator and professor of Fashion at ArtEZ José Teunissen
• Presentation of the NWO-KIEM granted research project “Behind the scenes in Dutch fashion; Bridging the gap between independent fashion designers, craftsmen and fashion intermediaries” by Mariangela Lavanga (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
• Roundtable about innovative entrepeneurship in the Rotterdam fashion industry, moderated by: Mariangela Lavanga and Liane van der Linden (Willem de Kooning Academy) with guests: Mevan Kaluarachchi (fashion designer), Margreeth Olsthoorn (fashion designer, shop owner and fashion curator), Linda van Wel (Skintight, latex garments), Fawad Samedi (tailor and owner of Knip Knap) and Joline Jolink (fashion designer, shop owner and internet entrepreneur). (for more information about the round table discussion, please see the text below)
• Announcement winners Open Call The Future of Fashion is Now
What are the entrepreneurial practices of independent fashion designers in relation to (local) craftsmen and (global) intermediaries? What issues do independent fashion designers encounter when they wish to produce locally? With whom do they collaborate and why? What strategies do they develop to produce and distribute their collection? What is the future of small-scale high-quality (local) production in a world of fast fashion?
NWO (The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research) and CLICKNL (The Dutch Creative Industries Knowledge and Innovation Network) have granted Dr. Mariangela Lavanga (main applicant – Erasmus University Rotterdam) and Nana Adusei-Poku (co-applicant – Hogeschool Rotterdam) a Creative Industry – Knowledge Innovation Mapping (KIEM) funding for the project “Behind the scenes in Dutch fashion; Bridging the gap between independent fashion designers, craftsmen and fashion intermediaries. As the location of production moves to the East and fast fashion is on the rise together with a higher speed of fashion cycles, independent fashion designers have to develop new strategies to compete. Within this context, a significantly increasing number of fashion designers seek to stay local (e.g. see for example the rise of new fashion values and the slow fashion movement highlighted in the exhibition), rediscover local craftsmanship skills and wish to exert greater amounts of control over the production process, while also infusing an artisanal ethos and emphasis on quality into their collections. These locally focused strategies are accompanied by new ways to reach the (global) intermediaries and the market.
Erasmus University Rotterdam and Hogeschool Rotterdam partner with MARGREETH OLSTHOORN, Van Rijthoven Holding, NOT JUST A LABEL, Willem de Kooning Academy, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen and Het Nieuwe Instituut to analyse the case of Rotterdam-based designers.”
The aim of the roundtable is to give a first answer to those questions by exploring some of the entrepreneurial practices of a selection of Rotterdam’s finest fashion designers, craftsmen and one key fashion intermediary.