The Orchard Road district recently saw the opening of Design Orchard, a joint development by the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), JTC Corporation and Enterprise Singapore dedicated to showcasing homegrown labels and nurturing local talent. The newly launched 2.5 storey building not only houses over 60 local retail brands spanning across fashion, accessories, beauty and lifestyle products on the ground floor, it has recently unveiled co-working and networking spaces on its upper floors.
Enter The Cocoon Space (TCS), a workspace operated by the Textile and Fashion Federation (TaFF), which offers a platform to build a community of successful fashion designers. From The Makers Studio fitted with industrial grade sewing machines and a dedicated space for designers to exhibit their work; to a Resource Wall featuring different types of fabric, materials and a 3D Printer; and The Co-Lab with convertible work spaces, TCS is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and specialised rooms for designers and companies to run workshops, conferences and events. The building also boasts the TENCEL™ Studio set against a lush, green outdoor amphitheatre overlooking Orchard Road, providing a conducive environment for independent designers and fashion businesses to launch their collections and run events.
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Collaborations Fostering Innovation and Sustainability
Among various strategic partnerships, TaFF has collaborated with Lenzing Group, the fiber industry’s leader in innovation and sustainable production. Designers will have access to samples of Lenzing’s specialty fabrics and information on eco-friendly fibres at its Resource Wall, which they can incorporate into their design and production process. This will allow designers to tap onto Lenzing’s industry knowledge and far-reaching networks, from fabric mills to regional designers and experts in eco-fabrics.
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The Bridge Fashion Incubator
In efforts to nurture and develop local talent, TaFF is also launching The Bridge Fashion Incubator (TBFI) programme, the first of its kind in Southeast Asia. The 30-week long programme equips and enables aspiring firms who are keen to launch and scale their business in the fashion industry. Successful applicants will be mentored in, and given exposure to innovation, sustainability and re-invention of the fashion value chain. TBFI programme director and founder of local womenswear label Hansel, Jo Soh; as well as resident mentor and a venture partner with Start Today Ventures, Debra Langley, will connect participants with industry insiders to enhance market readiness.
With these initiatives and collaborations tailored to the fashion community’s needs, we are well on our way to supporting local designers and their creative endeavours.
The Bridge Fashion Incubator programme will begin in August 2019. Applications are open from now till 3 May 2019.
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