Forge Fashion is a brand new, free business support and networking programme for fashion and textiles businesses in the London Borough of Waltham Forest, delivered by Creative United in partnership with Waltham Forest Council and The Fashion District. 

Forge Fashion aims to support fashion and textile businesses to thrive sustainably – both environmentally and financially – during Covid recovery and beyond, through workshops, one-to-one advice and networking. The programme is open to a mix of new and existing businesses from across the fields of fashion and textiles. Each will gain a better understanding of the strengths in their businesses, the chance to extend their network and create a bespoke action plan for sustainable growth.

The programme starts in October 2020 and will end in December 2020. 

Applications to join the programme are now closed.
 
We are delighted to announce the 30 businesses selected for the programme.
 
Click here to meet the #ForgeFashion cohort

Am I eligible? 

To be eligible for the programme you must: 

  • be based in Waltham Forest borough 
  • have been trading for at least 12 months 
  • operate in fashion or textiles sector, such as fashion or textile design, manufacture, retail, wholesale, jewellery & accessories, beauty, hairstyles, make-up artist, perfumery, fashion photography or consultancy, etc. 

Key dates

  • Applications open: 13 July 2020 
  • Deadline to receive applications: 18 September 2020 
  • Networking event no.1: 8 October 2020
  • Workshop: Cohort 1 (Emergent business): 11 November 2020 
  • Workshop: Cohort 2 (Established business): 12 November 2020
  • Networking event no.2: 17 December 2020 

N.B. timing and locations will be communicated with successful candidates 

FAQ 

What is Forge Fashion?

Through workshops, 1:1 support and networking events taking place from October to December 2020, Forge Fashion will help businesses to create their own, bespoke action plan to navigate in the post-Covid 19 outbreak and improve their sustainability – both in environmental and financial terms. 

How will the programme work and how can I apply?

There will be an application period between 13 July and 18 September 2020, which is the final deadline.  

After the deadline, all applicants will be notified with an outcome and 2 cohorts of 15 businesses will be enrolled: one suitable for emergent businesses and another one for established. 

The successful applicants in the 2 cohorts will access free support consisting of: 

  • a 1 hour preliminary 1:1 diagnostic session, 
  • a 1-day workshop, 
  • a 1 hour 1:1 advice session 
  • participation in 2 Networking events.

Forge Fashion will run from October – December 2020

I have already done a business support programme in the past. Am I still eligible?

Yes, you can certainly apply for this programme, as Forge Fashion is focused on the fashion and textile industry specifically. 

What can I expect to learn at the workshop?

Unless the UK government guidelines on Covid-19 develop further on collective gatherings, the workshops are expected to be delivered on an online platform (e.g. Zoom), for both cohorts. 

The workshops are planned for 11 and 12 November and will last for a full day (e.g. from 10:00-16:00). The confirmed times and dates will be communicated to the successful candidates during the enrolment period. 

The main workshop themes will be: 

  • environmental sustainability & alignment between people/profit/planet 
  • understanding financial & strategic planning 
  • fashion branding 
  • strategies to bounce back post-Covid 

What are the networking events about?

The selected cohorts will network with their peers and participate in 2 Networking events, one at the beginning of the programme (8 October) and the last one in mid-December, at the end of the programme. 

Speakers will be leaders and innovators from London’s fashion and textiles sector, keen to share their insights on environmental sustainability & circular economy, supply chain models, retail, selling & e-commerce, manufacturing. 

For any further questions regarding the programme or eligibility criteria, please get in touch by email  carla.pianese@creativeunited.org.uk 

Launch Event 

To celebrate the launch of Forge Fashion, we invited leaders and innovators from London’s fashion and textiles sector to share their insights in 3 Instagram Live events. Those who missed the events live can now watch a recording of each IG live here

The schedule of IG live events was: 

  • 20 July, 7pm –Rosie Wolfenden MBE from Tatty Devine talks about creating a successful and scalable brand 
  • 22 July, 7pm –Anna Ellis from the Centre for Fashion Enterprise talks about the challenges for fashion businesses during and beyond COVID 19 
  • 24 July, 7pm –Ryan Yasin from Petit Pli talks about creating sustainability through fash-tech innovation

Press Release 

For further information and for press/media enquiries, please see the press release by clicking on the button below.

Click here for the press release

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