As London gets ready for one of the world’s biggest Fashion Week events, Trinidad and Tobago Fashion Designers wowed a crowd of international press, buyers, and fashion, music and creative industry professionals on Wednesday evening. The Align Private Showcase was hosted by the Trinidad and Tobago Coalition of Services Industries (TTCSI) as part of its efforts to promote services sector exports and was designed to take advantage of the presence of industry professionals who flock to London to get a jump on next season’s trends. Fashion designer Meiling described the Showcase as “a dream come true—to show my line to such an audience here in London; I want to thank the TTCSI and all the team for making this happen”. This London Fashion Week Off Schedule Event was held at The Mayfair Hotel—a premier entrée to London Fashion Week.
The TTCSI worked with London-based luxury fashion consultant David Jones (mentor for some of the world’s biggest designers and developing fashion houses such as Matthew Williamson, Karen Millen, and John Galliano) and public relations, branding and design consultant colleague Sharon Louise Laurent to plan and promote the private showing. The event was designed and conceptualised on a similar format used for many Elite brand launches. At a reception sponsored by the Ministry of Tourism, Project Runway Season 9 winner, Anya Ayoung-Chee, veteran Caribbean designer Meiling and accessories designer Rachel Ross presented their Spring/Summer 2013 Collections. The guests were welcomed by His Excellency The High Commissioner for the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago Garvin Nicholas. Meiling presented her SS/13 collection, which had an elegant urban edge; while Anya Ayoung Chee created a taste of Trinidad with her Carnival of colour SS/13 offering. Rachel Ross provided the perfect contemporary accessories with her unique, high-end jewellery.
Specially invited guests experienced an oasis of cool Trinbagonian design in a luxurious and contemporary urban setting. The show was accompanied by performances sponsored by Angostura Limited from rising T&T music star Collis Duranty. Terry Mansfield, Chairman of Graduate Fashion Week stated that the three collections were very dynamic and congratulated the organisers for this initiative. Buyers were excited and commented on the high quality of the designers’ collections and the readiness of the brands for the UK market. In the following days the trio of designers will be conducting interviews with various media houses as well as business-to-business meetings with pre-qualified buyers who are in London for the marquee London Fashion Week September 2012. London Fashion Week, which runs from September 14 to 18 this year, is one of the highest profile fashion events in the world and one of the ‘big four’ international catwalk influencers. Fashion buyers from all over the world visit London at this time to select pieces for next season’s shop floors.
The TTCSI will continue to work with the designers to follow up on the leads made at the showcase and ensure this initiative materialises in tangible business transactions. This initiative is one of the many projects being implemented by the TTCSI for the Development of strong fashion industry in Trinidad and Tobago. Other projects include capacity building and business skills training for designers, development of standards for the industry, lobbying and representation through the Fashion Industry Development Committee (FIDC), of which the organisation is the vice-chair.