Flamboyant, energetic style or action; dash; verve inspired by Eubie.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Fate of the US Fashion Industry

Photo credit: Catriona Garforth http://www.sooc.co.uk/catriona/ catriona%20prints.htm

Sorry I haven't posted in almost a week I'm in the 'burbs of MD and just now got to a mac compatible with my external hard drive LOL.  Anyway, I just wanted to discuss how I had an awesome time working backstage at official fashion week shows and then pick up a Women's Wear Daily and see this headline, "Can Seventh Avenue be Saved?"  I am so heartbroken because a lot of the fabric and trim mom and pop shops are being susceptible to gentrification like every other area in much of NYC.    Production offices are being forced to cut down the size of their offices because rents are too high.  To a young upcoming designer such as myself this is threatening my livelihood.  New designers can't afford to outsource and fly to China and India just to get a sample made or buy bulk fabric.  I am scared for our future, manufacturing needs to come back to the US, we need jobs.    NY and LA are two of the last places in this country that small scale apparel manufacturing still occurs.  Just to give you an example of what's happening here are some stats from WWD:

-Last year there were 17,613 manufacturing jobs in the garment district
-In 2006 there were 18,158 manufacturing jobs in the garment district
-At its peak in 1950 there were 369,000 manufacturing jobs in the garment district
- Half of the garment district's 10 million square feet is zoned for apparel companies, 1 million is currently being used.

The decline is apparent and continuing.  Everyone involved in the fashion industry needs to get involved to save their jobs.  From my point of view there are a few really good ways to do that.

1. VOTE (we need to put pressure on our candidates to tell us what they are going to do to create jobs and stop outsourcing)

2. Learn a trade, sewing, knitting, pattern-making etc and perfect it! You will be in demand.

3. Get involved: http://www.SavetheGarmentCenter.com

Until next time, keep sewing!



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