One of my intentions for starting this blog was to help others that are looking for resources and information so I am going to share one of my most valuable resources with you today. That would be the Fashion Incubator at www.fashion-incubator.com. Kathleen Fasanella owns this fantastic resource and she has written the book on how to become a designer (literally). Her book is called The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Sewn Product Manufacturing you can purchase the book from her website if you wish. This is a bible for those of us that are trying to start our own manufacturing company. Even though it is written for the garment industry I have found that it has been just as valuable to me trying to decipher this hidden world of shoe manufacturing.
Kathleen is one of the rare people in this industry that actually shares her knowledge and believe me there isn’t one person in the industry that couldn’t learn something from her. Not only do you get her knowledge but you get the nitty-gritty information that no one would ever tell you, this information is priceless. Even had I gone the traditional fashion school route I would not know half of what I know because of this book and the forum.
When you go to the Fashion Incubator as a guest you will have access to a lot of very useful information regarding the fashion industry. If you are even considering starting your own line, do yourself a favor and buy the book and join the group as a member. Her forum is a gold mine of information, the members are mostly designer entrepreneurs who have all the questions you will have as you begin starting this kind business and the members share their knowledge freely. If you have questions about production, trade shows, sales, offshore production and so on you have access to your peers who’ve already crossed the bridge you’re crossing now. Most of the time I find my question has already been asked in the past and I can just see all of the different answers and opinions. Often, I find that I learn things that I wasn’t even aware of to be able to ask the question.
Kathleen’s forum is why I started my blog; I see the value in sharing information with your peers the way she has done. I know the fashion industry is cut throat and maybe I differ from others out there but, I have no problem helping a fellow designer. The way I see it we are all running our own race, I believe that we help ourselves when we help others. The designs are a part of my imagination so you either have that or you don’t, but process shouldn’t be something secret and hidden. I for one wish that there was a Kathleen Fasanella for the shoe industry.