It was great to see some fresh faces at last night’s Leadership Academy masterclass. We welcomed two fantastic industry experts to talk on ‘Business and Enterprise’.
Our first speaker was the inspiring entrepreneur, author of ‘Design Create Sell: A Guide to Starting and Running a Successful Fashion Business’ and founder of Fashion Angel, Alison Lewy. With a background in business and a passion for fashion she gave our Leadership Academy members a great insight into what it really takes to take on your own enterprise in the fashion world. She gave great advice and tips on everything from creating your own pop up shop, marketing and networking advice and the importance of funding and managing your accounts. She also discussed women in business and having the right mindset and passion to succeed.
Our second speaker was Levi Palmer, one half of designer label palmer//harding. Levi gave an honest and up front talk about his own journey into what is now a highly successful designer enterprise. He spoke about the highs and lows of creating your own brand – “Fashion can be all smoke and mirrors but what is real is the business aspect,” he explained.
Giving advice on working with other people, knowing how to compromise and work as a team and how to never give up when things get difficult financially. It was fantastic to hear about the more practical and creative side of going into your own business. Levi gave insight into how he gets inspired, he explained how he starts by ‘building a nest’ of images and narrows them down till he has one clear theme or idea. Rather than following trends, Levi is always picking things up, collecting things that inspire him; films, exhibitions or music – the important thing is to have an emotional connection. He tells us how to always look for something new and not to follow the trends.
All in all our Leadership Academy members came away inspired, motivated and focused. Both speakers made the point that, ‘If you’re young, work hard, have passion and drive – you CAN succeed in the fashion industry.’