July 11, 2016

The Good, Bad & the Ugly"

 Attendess: Elysia Purnell, Terra Mcbride, Victoria Lopez, Joan Marcozzi, Kiya Tomlin, Brittney Thieroff, Michele Garris, Donnella Drewery, Leigh Solomon-Pugliano, Aire Plicha-Reese


The Good:

 1. There is a shift in local pride, focus on USA made etc.

   a. We do, it’s also how we think the future will be.

b. We need to work harder to keep the small shops here.

2. Fashion bloggers - there is a real community here!

a. We need to work with them in looking to help promote our messaging.

b. It’s nice to work with the girls who have a local focus from time to time

3. Organizations (non-style focused) in the community are open to collaboration + partnership. 

a. Cross promotion

4. Diversity, we believe there are a lot of things going on, in different neighborhoods etc.



 5. Look into the Restaurant Scene - what do we see that this community is doing well to be successful and thriving: 

a.  Government funding? Tax breaks?

b. They all have themes, not too posh

c. How do we translate success in other industries into to the fashion scene?

6. Alpha Lab? Google?

7. When new people move into PGH zip codes can we send welcome packet? 


The Bad:

1. Why can’t we find local factories to produce our designs?

a. We believe the talent is here to support the possible manufacturing

b. Look to tech shop’s success to set up design studios

    i.     Fashion events happening at Alpha Lab, need to make this connection

2. Overall taste level needs work and education

3. We’re not fashion forward, things are not moving forward or happening here

a. How do we make the population here open to this?

4.  The style industries current reputation:

We have a responsibility to present our city well

5. We need to find ways to show people the advantages of fashion and being stylish.

a. Tailored pieces (can be thrift finds, put the $ towards tailoring)

b. Pop-ups? Consumer focus groups? Concept stores?

6. Big picture, a large challenge in spreading the word.

a. Brand Style412, one central place people can go to for support + resources

               i.     Fashion “community center”

1. Could we get discounted or free rent for a space to test?

7. Need to think about separating business of fashion (commerce) and fashion as an artform. 

a. Everything isn’t tied to #s and $s. 

b. Find ways to let creativity reign

8. Pittsburgh Fashion Week needs revived and rebranded

a. Elevate

b. Design vs. retail

c. Overall fashion shoes do need help and polishing, but designers still need sell through

                   i.     Possible to live stream to buyers?

9. Innovation is lacking in the industry overall - combining fashion and tech?

a. Possible exhibit like set up where people could order? First Fridays presentation?

b. Fred Segal featured underground brands, who could do that?

c. Model after Milk?

d. Handmade Arcade, but for fashion designers 


The Ugly:

1. Close mindedness, be true to yourself, but where does the cockiness come from?

a. People that don’t know fashion, but act like they do

2. Quality is lacking all across the board, This needs fixed:

We need to highlight quality that is Pittsburgh-based and quit shining light on low quality.

3. We need a foundation, a home, place to start.

4. Time is critical