Regina Fashion Collective

Regina Fashion Collective member Meagan Brook displays some of her work

Downtown was busy Friday night, October 21, and there was no busier spot than Creative City Centre (1843 Hamilton Street) during Regina Fashion Collective’s fundraising party.  The second floor was packed with people of all ages, out to support local fashion designers. 

The goal of the evening was to raise money for a point-of-sale system for the up coming shop on Loggies second floor.  The idea is to have retail shop in the forward section to sell clothes that design collective members produce down the hall.    

The fashion collective will be located at the rear of the second story of the Creative City Centre.  There are six spaces taken up by six of the twelve collective members, with one additional space reserved for an associate to rent for a certain period ( a few weeks to a month).

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Collective member Meagan Brook was good enough to give me a tour of the new space. 

In our conversation, Meagan reiterated the value of having collective resources, like a cutting table, washers and a dryer, which might be to large or expensive for individual designers to house or afford.  Another important piece was how well the group works together.  Everyone has different experiences to offer and the members feed off each other’s ideas.  Although the styles or target audience for each member may be different (Meagan’s work is in women’s ready-to-wear) connecting designers as well as other artists, in the same building will help everyone.   

Meagan recognized that fashion is an emergent industry in Saskatchewan and because of its newness, there are some barriers.  For one thing there aren’t fashion programs in the province for young people to learn about production.  Meagan had to leave for Lethbridge to go to school.     

Regina Fashion Collective's production space, second floor of 1843 Hamilton St.
 
Katie Gustin, another collective member, also had to go away for school.  She went to Toronto for a program.  An advantage in Toronto is being able to easily source fabrics and other materials for production.  Katie mentioned that, in Regina, the main source for materials is Fabricland or perhaps repurposing older clothing. 
Accessing materials was a concern to both the young women I spoke to. There was, however, a recognition that other, more experienced, designers in the collective may play a role in helping others with their contacts and suppliers.          
On Friday a concert venue, soon to be a shop for the collective to sell their work

That Friday night was so energizing.  For the first time in a long while it felt great to be downtown.  The creative energy at 1843 Hamilton Street contrasted beautifully with the political discussions happening in Victoria Park.  It wasn’t the antagonism it might seem, between two very different groups, but the opposite; an affirmation of what an active, engaging downtown can be. 

I sincerely hope this new production and retail space can, provide an outlet for creative people to stay and learn the business and an art of fashion design.      

For more coverage, see the Leader Post’s piece

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Regina Fashion Collective

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