Orlando Fashion Battle Summer Edition

Join Orlando’s Only Fashion Competition Event that rewards it’s talent with prizes, titles, media interviews and influencer level social media recognition in Orlando Fashion District‘s effort to raise the bar on Orlando‘s Fashion Scene and make Orlando a Fashion Destination.

Read all about our Fashion Battle here! https://orlandofashiondistrict.com/and-the-winners-are/

This competition is being filmed, live streamed, video edited and developed for television episodes on a 6000 sf soundstage set at KDS One Studios.

Tickets must be purchased in advance and all attendees consent to the possibility of being filmed, interviewed and / or photographed.

The theme for this battle is our Summer Edition.
Competing are Designers, Models, Hair Stylists and Makeup Artists for the best in show titles, awards, recognition and be able to share their Fashion Journey story before, during and after this nonprofit event.
Prizes from sponsors will be shared with the winners.

Food and Drink will be available for purchase.

Please contact us to become a sponsor of this fun groundbreaking competition. We are accepting vendors, product placement, signage, swag bag items, services, prizes for the winners, goods, services and funding via Orlando Fashion District, a nonprofit organization.

To register for the next Fashion Battle event ENTER HERE � https://form.jotform.us/90505454058153

For all the latest follow us on Facebook and Instagram under Orlando Fashion District, Orlando Fashion Battle, Fashion Battle League and www.OrlandoFashionDistrict.com

6 Accomplishments of Orlando Fashion District in 2018

Orlando Fashion District is well on its way to helping make Orlando a fashion destination and building a Garment District here.

Here are some of the highlights, accomplishments, and partnerships we formed in 2018.

With the help of Juan Bermudez, Sr Creative Director, we now have a website featuring a fashion event calendar to help locals and tourists stay informed on what’s happening in Orlando’s Fashion Scene.

Krent Studio

Krent Studio

Richard Krent of Krent Studios has agreed to help Orlando Fashion District define our project development plans architecturally. As Orlando’s former city architect and Sr. Facilities Design Manager for Universal Theme Parks, development projects in Dubai, Africa, Panama and other major cities around the globe, our literal plan proposals are coming soon! http://krentstudio.com/

KDS One Studios logo

KDS One Studios has become the home of Orlando Fashion District while our future plans are in development. Gina Vincenza, Orlando Fashion District’s Founder has taken up residence there as a celebrity seamstress, fashion, costume and tactical designer and shares her Design House Of Vincenza space with OFD for meetings, a monthly fundraising event and more, with workshops and seminars coming soon.
KDS One Studios, 3601 Vineland Rd, Suite 10, Orlando, FL 32811

Avatar Company Logo

Bob Kovacevich, Principal at Avatar Company, an International nonprofit sector consultancy since 1978 is helping Orlando Fashion District advance its readiness to launch a feasibility study that measures the compatibility and fundability of the project. To learn more about Avatar Company visit www.facebook.com/Avatarway

African’s In Orlando

African’s In Orlando

Orlando Fashion District supported our first local runway with “Africans In Orlando” by providing runway show event services including garment rack rental, seamstress and wardrobe services, steaming and ironing equipment and volunteers to help their designers prepare garments for the show, dressing and changing models.

Goodwill Logo

Goodwill Logo

Orlando Fashion District partnered with the Goodfinds department of Goodwill Industries Of Central Florida to produce their first ever runway show of “Little Black Dresses” at the Southern Women’s Show using Goodwill employees, volunteer models, hair stylists, and makeup artists.

If you’d like to support Orlando Fashion District’s nonprofit mission with your time, talent, skills, connections, venues, brands, products, services, funding or donations please email us as through our website or at Info@OrlandoFashionDistrict.com

3 Things I Learned About Goodwill

Goodwill Logo

Goodwill Logo

As a huge advocate of giving fashion a second wind beyond its original owner, I must say I was thrilled when Orlando’s Woman Of The Year and Goodwill Of Central Florida’s COO, Karla Radke contacted me about putting Goodwill Fashions into Runway Shows of Orlando, FL.

What I learned on their “WOW Tour” of the behind the scenes operations, was truly impressive.

  1. I had no idea Goodwill received so many Luxury Brand items, they have an entire department dedicated to authenticating each item and posting it for sale on their auction site!! See for yourself at http://goodfindscfl.com
  2. Goodwill has a boutique on Orange Avenue in Winter Park, FL where many brand new high end items end up with the tags still attached!!
  3. I learned funding from items we donate to Goodwill is used to help people find jobs. Goodwill employs many who have a harder time than the rest of us in finding jobs including people with disabilities, who are homeless or who’ve been in prison. They help them in many ways including providing job interview clothing and other basic needs.

On the tour I attended I met with workers from Orange County Corrections who asked me about coming up with programs for inmates who want to learn how to design, pattern and sew. At Orlando Fashion District we’re working on those solutions.

As a result of meeting with Goodwill, I am excited to say Orlando Fashion District is working with Adrienne G at Goodwill on producing their first Runway Show!  They’ve entered their “Little Black Dress” collection into the Fashion Events of the Southern Women’s Show!

There will be 3 opportunities to see some of the amazing and trendy designs in this collection, most being first time modeled by their own employees!!

This collection will debut at the Southern Women’s Show on Friday 10/26 at 3:30 pm and again on Saturday 10/27 at 3:30 pm in the Orange County Convention Center’s North Concourse, Hall B.

If you’d like to see more of the “Little Black Dress Collection” you’re invited to shop it at Goodwill’s Pop Up Shop on Tuesday 10/30 from 6-9 pm.

Come join us for a kid friendly Halloween Party and Pop Up Shopping Event at Studio One Orlando’s exciting new soundstage location at KDS One Studios, 3601 Vineland Rd, Suite 10, Orlando, FL 32811

We will have food, fun, magic, tricks and treats at a benefit event for Orlando Fashion District!

Admission is free, but space is limited so reserve your tickets today!

Https://www.eventbrite.com/e/halloween-party-and-pop-up-shopping-tickets-50428974420

If you’d like to donate, sponsor, volunteer or otherwise be involved in these or other fun fashion opportunities please feel free to contact me!!

Stay Tuned for more on how things went!

Gina Vincenza,
Founder,
Orlando Fashion District
Gina@OrlandoFashionDistrict.com

Orlando Fashion District’s Nonprofit Mission is to Unite, Support and Educate in the Fashion, Costume and Beauty Industries.

Our goal is to make Orlando a Fashion Destination and build a Garment District here.

4 Ways To “Prove The Concept” Of Your Fashion Designs

Red Kimono Fabric Scarf

Red Kimono Fabric Scarf

“Proof of concept” is something people like Daymond John of Shark Tank, talks about and does with every one of his fashion design ideas. It’s a necessary process every designer should go through before spending any money on a full production run of their designs.

Why?

 Unless you’ve got tens of thousands of dollars and several months of time, you’re ready, willing and able to flush down the toilet, this less expensive process will ensure your designs will sell, help you refine the details and self fund your first production run. 

Step One:

While you’ve been working on your patterns and prototypes, which can be a long process, you should have also been working on your social media. If you haven’t been doing this, Get on it, NOW! This is important! How else do you expect to quantify, market, sell or represent your designs without a trace of your brand online?

Crowdfund Your First Run

By spending $0 (DIY+ a % of Fees from actual sales) to $1,500+ on an Indiegogo, Kickstarter or similar crowdfunding campaign, you’ll know within 7-60 days if spending another several thousand dollars on a production run will be worth it or not. By using photos of your prototypes, making a short video, telling your brand’s story and getting some numbers together on how much a minimum production run will cost, you can now do a presale to fund your first run.

One of two things will happen using this process:

Worst Case Scenario: You don’t presell enough to cover a minimum run production run and it’s time to take this valuable feedback to the drawing board. You just saved yourself a ton of money.

Best Case Scenario: You over fund your goal, have way more sales than you expected and a strong design to go to market with.

Pop Up Shop / Trunk Show / Sell From Samples

For the cost of your prototypes, you can use them to put together a “Pop Up Shop” or “Trunk Show” 

Here’s how:

Rent a table at a local Pop Up Event (we will be running several events like this year round.) Farmers Market or Vendor Booth in a space that puts you in front of your target market.

Or you can pack your prototypes into a suitcase and take your mobile collection on tour!

Have swatches of the other fabric colors you want to offer. 

Take your designs to local boutiques or directly to your target market buyers. 

Make your goals to show your collection, get feedback and take orders. 

Use a free survey app like JotForm.com or SurveyMonkey.com to ask at least 100 people for their opinion about your designs, styles, fabrics, colors, sizing and pricing. Be willing to make the necessary changes if you want people to buy. 

Be willing to make any necessary changes to your designs to close the deal. 

Have some production run numbers worked out and put together some package pricing for buyers with a range of sizes and colors. 

If someone just wants to buy one garment, have some made to order pricing worked out. (and DON’T expect your seamstress to cut and sew your designs for anything less than a decent wage plus materials! Made to order pricing should be much higher than production pricing.)

Convention Sales

Rent a booth and use your prototypes to take orders at a Tradeshow like Orlando’s own “Southern Woman’s Show”,  “Surf Expo” (with Swim Designs) or other similar Expo, Event or Tradeshow. 

The “Magic” Tradeshow in Vegas is the ultimate proven selling ground for attracting buyers from around the world, but make sure you’ve got your social media “ducks in a row”. I had one client who was extremely embarrassed when a major brand became interested in his designs. He spend thousands of dollars on product development, prototypes and had an amazing display booth. When a major retailer asked for his Instagram handle on the spot and he didn’t even have one, it really hurt his credibility as being taken seriously. Don’t be that guy!! Hire someone!

Pre Sale

If you’ve done your social media job correctly, doing a presale will help you determine how interested your followers are in what you have to offer. Having an established social media base is the best, it’s the most relevant, high tech and modern way to reach your potential buyers.

Check our event calendar for pop up shops, workshops and seminars to help you make your Fashion dreams come true!

Gina Vincenza, Founder

Orlando Fashion District

Gina@OrlandoFashionDistrict.com 

3 Reasons Why an Orlando Fashion and Garment District Would Thrive

OFD Bumper StickerWe at Orlando Fashion District have discovered three compelling reasons why developing Orlando as a Fashion Destination with a Garment District, at this point in time, is the perfect storm.

1. REVENUE – The money being generated by the Garment District in NYC is over 2 BILLION Dollars a year! In Los Angeles, CA, the garment district generates a whopping 10 BILLION Dollars per year. NYC Garment District Annual Report 2017

NYC Garment District

and LA Fashion District Economic Development Plan

Both nonprofit Districts are trending with further development in the works. (Orlando Fashion District is incorporated as a nonprofit organization.)

Was your first thought, those numbers are because of the global Fashion Industries in NYC and LA?

That was mine.

Why would having a Garment District in Orlando work?

What most people don’t realize is, both NYC and LA’s garment districts are largely supported by the COSTUMING demands of Entertainment, Broadway, Film and Television.

Here’s where we want you to connect the dots…

Guess where we have a disproportionate amount of entertainment going on, which has made us one of the top tourist destinations in the world?

Orlando has 3 GLOBAL and expanding destination Theme Parks between Disney, Universal and Sea World, with countless other entertainment venues and cruise lines, who confidently ride the multi million dollar wave of marketing dollars being spent on attracting visitors to Orlando. It’s a well oiled machine, that generated 72 million tourists last year.

To feed the voracious demand for costumes here, there are millions of dollars being spent on the daily, for fabrics, equipment, materials, trims, buttons, zippers and supplies – all of which are currently being shipped to Orlando from elsewhere.

Spoiler alert. Here’s the gap.

Orlando’s current local choices for key garment ingredients are underwhelming, limited, poor quality, under stocked and/or overpriced.

Why haven’t we created a more self sustaining environment here to supply the local demand to feed the machine that keeps this mouse town running? Good question!

The dynamics of the current supply and demand situation, begs for a solution and has created an opportunity to fill a profitable gap in the system, by making our beautiful city of Orlando, more self sustaining.

Now, let’s add the Global Fashion Revenue Numbers, which reveal a 2.4 TRILLION DOLLAR Industry and 2% of the World’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) which has consistently grown by 5.5% annually according to the lMcKinsey’s State Of Fashion Report

Not only does the need for clothing touch EVERYONE literally, but it’s the world’s seventh-largest economy.

We believe by investing locally to create a garment district, we can turn garments “Made In Orlando” into revenue and jobs.

Speaking of jobs…

2. JOBS – The NYC Garment District employs over 129,000 designers, pattern makers, graders, cutters and stitchers while LA employs nearly 30,000 of the same highly skilled workers.

Universal and Disney Theme Parks already have their own Design and Fabrication departments who currently employ thousands of these same skilled workers.

Costume design and sewing work for the entertainment industry keeps several privately owned costume shops in Orlando, running at capacity.

Local companies like Hardrive Productions, Winfield Murdock Creative Works, D Squared Productions and Skip Stewart Costumes are slammed with sewing contracts for Theater, Parade, Theme Park, Cruise Lines, Touring Shows and more.

Other growing design and sewing related businesses located in Orlando include Bespoke Stitchery and several enterprisers like Elizabeth Scovil Designs, Martin Capristan and let’s mention Jason Neece of 1v1 Fight Gear, who has an Adidas contract for sewing the only boxing gloves being made in the USA, right here in Sanford, FL.

Baltimore, MD has an innovative program that gives former inmates the opportunity to learn production sewing. Baltimore Sun Article
Orlando Fashion District has been asked by our local Corrections System to create design, pattern making and sewing related programs for inmates and to provide ex con job training and production sewing jobs in Orlando. We’re currently working on the logistics of making that happen in Orlando.

Need more proof? Here you go…

Manufacturing jobs in Orlando have more than doubled from 3.6 to 8.2 over the last year according to the Orlando Area Economy Summary Dated June 27, 2018. 

We’re taking “Orlando Pride” to the next level by creating jobs here with inspiring initiatives we’d like to spread to other cities. We’ve taken on the challenge of being the change we want to see in the world, by becoming the innovative leaders driven to inspire and create new strategies using automated systems and advanced technologies to bring garment production back to the USA.

3. TOURISM – Orlando was visited by a record number of tourists last year to the tune of 72 million, making Orlando THE Top US Destination, overtaking NYC and LA by almost 30 million visitors!

Here are some compelling numbers for comparison as to why we believe becoming a contender in the Fashion World wouldn’t take as much effort as you’d think.
Paris, which is considered to be the leading Fashion city in the world, had 23 million visitors out of 82.6m visitors to it’s entire country of France.
The entire country of Italy had 52.4m and UK had 35.8 million visitors.
If those aren’t some compelling numbers that illustrate how many people are coming to Orlando vs the rest of the world and to illustrate how successful we have the potential of becoming a leading fashion destination, I don’t know what is.

If we build it, they are already coming.

Take I-4 anywhere and you’ll see the evidence of our expansion.

Orlando is being redeveloped in so many areas to meet the demands of our growth, it’s astonishing. Orange Blossom Trail between Colonial Drive and Sand Lake Road is being reclaimed by “OBT Next”. We’d love to be located downtown or on OBT, but are open to other options because we realize traffic and parking to a Fashion Destination and Garment District, needs to be considered.

Orlando boasts 11 Top rated tourist destinations. Over 55.8 million of them visited our largest Theme Parks. 

In comparison, over 1.5 million people visited the Garment District in Los Angeles last year,
out of 48.5 million who visited the city.
NYC’s Garment District drew 2.15 million visitors for both business and pleasure,
out of 47 million visitors to their city. https://www.nyctourist.com/tourist-info.php
Using these figures, comparatively speaking, we could conservatively experience a minimum of 2+ million visitors to a fashion destination and garment district if we created a similar environment adding BILLIONS of dollars to our local economy.

Miami made the Top 10 Fashion Cities in the USA list, but Orlando could take the lead, if we simply acknowledged and supported our growing fashion scene and made an effort to exceed the fashion demands of our visitors, being met by other cities.

When the Brightline train connects Miami to Orlando in just 3 hours, we can expect thousands of visitors from Miami to be delivered to Orlando on a regular basis, giving us the perfect opportunity to shine.

Orlando is sitting in a powerful position to support its own native and profitable Fashion Entertainment and Garment District. There are dozens of privately held Runway Shows and Fashion Themed Charity Events going on here, on a monthly basis according to Instagram, Facebook and Eventbrite. OFD’s Fashion Event Calendar helps anyone find fashion events here more easily and assists creators in gaining more exposure and success.

People leave Orlando to take Fashion Vacations around the world for events and to shop for trending fashion and wholesale buying trips for resale.
Conventions like “Magic” are being held in Vegas and NYC by UMBFashion.com.
Miami is host to Fabric shows like DGExpo.net and the Apparel Textile Show ATSM.com which we attend.
Our world class convention facilities could easily handle huge trade shows and global fashion week events, if we put energy into attracting this business.

In closing, we believe creating a self sustaining Garment District in Orlando and developing our city as an International Fashion Destination is a winning proposition.
By offering trending educational and co-op work spaces, technologically advanced green manufacturing facilities and a year round Runway Venue, we’d attract visitors to areas of Orlando, ready for revitalization.
Fashion, Costume and Beauty Industry Showrooms, Headquarters and Business can show the world Orlando is a competitive and creative community, where they can find style, beauty, and innovation in fashion.

Fashionably Yours,

Gina Vincenza Van Epps
Founder,
Orlando Fashion District
Gina@OrlandoFashionDistrict.com