How To Make It In The Garment District: The Motive

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In 2010, HBO released what is to this day of of the best shows they have ever contributed to the world of entertainment.
"How To Make It In America"
Two New York based fashion entrepreneurs fighting for their slice of the American Pie. Only two seasons in before its cancellation but its contributions have lasted a lifetime. An authentic display of the exciting hustle that comes along with developing as an artist in The Big Apple.
As a student of the AMA Masterclass, watching this show is your first homework assignment.
Born from the inspiration the show has given me and the difficulty of finding my own footing with this fashion world I created "How to Make It In The Garment District". A true life crash course in creating a fashion house in todays ever changing world. A resource meant for those who know what they want but need some guidance getting there. Cause I remember standing in the same place, wasting money and not know who to turn to.
Soon after starting, I realized how many needed that access to build the world they always dreamed of. Many people nowadays just want to start a brand as a quick money grab but its really an art to formulating a community around the brand your building. Which at the end of the day, will mark how long you will last in the fashion industry. You come to figure out fast that if your heart isn't in it the money is only short lived. Fashion is a space of constant reinvention.
Learning how to actually make clothes step by step is the first and most important step in the process of building a brand. Through the glamour of the social media designer lifestyle so many people skip this step or try and find ways around it.
But this specifically is what separates a Fashion Designer/Director from a Graphic designer, and while both are a respected necessity they are indeed two very different positions. It's one thing to be able to make a good tech pack but a whole nother world understanding garment construction and development. Then on top of that creating an entire atmosphere for the art to live within. This is what allows you to take 2D ideas from screen/paper to 3D wearable garments. It's what sets a blank & print hoodie apart from a Vetements 1/50 Limited Edition one.
Photos: How the Circulation Skirt Went From Idea To Runway
Knowing the process gives you the power the create new garments, fits, silhouettes and really push the boundaries of what a garment was always known to be. Thus making it specific to you and your brand. Setting you apart from the rest. Which at the end of it all keeps our landfills from filling up with more meaningless fashions.
After creating these amazing quality garments you need to learn to be expressive about your work and process. This can be delivered in so many ways and it falls on you as Creative Director to be able to market/communicate your message to the public.
This is directly why it's so important to formulate your message before attempting to amplify your voice. You already know exactly what you're saying. Now the quality pieces are there its time to scream it to the world!
Photos: Debut of "Mitosis" Shot in Harlem Hospital
 After a full year hiatus, I've decided to bring the class back in its most updated state. Over the past year, my design rolodex and resource list has grown immensely. Although, I am also still learning daily I know I now have even more to offer than when the classes started.
In a span of one year I educated 100 students and even had a 5/5 review published in The Cut. But after returning to work as a nurse and traveling the world it became harder to keep the class on a regular schedule. In its downtime I get asked almost weekly about its return and this time were back and bigger.
What exactly is included in the Masterclass? This is a Full Day 7/8 Hour Course Located in NYC's Garment District
We initially gather in our classroom for the day hidden up in an office building embedded in it all. There's a small breakfast awaits you of juice, doughnuts and hot chocolate. Grab whatever you like and when time strikes we get right into it.
A introductory icebreaker commences and we go around the room. Everyone must participate but when you get here you'll see it's a really interactive space.
After we meet each other we break into groups and start the Design workshop. This year students will be tasked in conceptualizing their own design variation for the AMA Hazmat Boot. My footwear offering made in Italy. At the end of the course they will be gifted their own pair to go home with.
Both groups share their ideas then we get into the course work. Here we go through the entire process from start to finish. I show you all the tools and resources I utilize to produce my work, events, and ideas. Here you also meet two oversea manufactures I am actively using and learn how to search for others. You see my work and their quality first hand. I am also going on a manufacturing trip to visit these two makers after Chinese New Year.
We spend about two hours going through everything then have a Q&A to cover all concerns. After we go on our walking tour to see the production process first hand where you meet three more NYC developers. We return to have lunch, discuss the post-production part of the process, and I give you a list of resources to work with.
Lastly, we take more questions and conclude.
Creating this class has directly impacted so many people in so many ways. Helping both the students and the manufacturers I am working with. It directly pumps energy into the Garment District an area struggling with the battles of digital clothing production.
This is for everyone but specifically for the ones that have always wanted to start their own brand but scared of starting on a faulty foundation. Or the person tired of buying Balenciaga and are ready to get serious about their own craft/ideas. Or maybe the guy that doesn't care to start a business and just wants to make their own clothes. Or a stylist who wants to pump out their own looks from scratch. Or a fashion enthusiast who just wants an inside look in NYC's Garment District during NYFW. I learned that the course has helped so many people in so many different ways and now that I can offer even more I'm ready to open its doors again.
Don't want to spill all the gems here, so go secure yourself a seat.
Photos Courtesy of Oluwole Olosunde RN BSN

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