The Creative Coast Visit

On Tuesday 16th January 2018 Fashion Enter welcomed the Creative Coast’s fashion and textiles creative cluster from Donegal, Ireland to the Factory.

The Creative Coast is a programme operated by the Local Enterprise Office in Donegal, the aim of the programme is to inform people of potential opportunities and to establish a coherent identity for Donegal's creative sectors. The aim of the visit was to ensure the group gain a better understanding of how the complete garment life cycle is achieved through the processes in a live factory environment.

The visit began with an introduction to Fashion Enter by CEO Jenny Holloway and a breakdown of the different departments of Fashion Enter. Soon after the introduction, the group were taken onto the factory floor with Fashion Enter’s Production Director Caroline Ash. Whilst on the Factory Floor, Caroline explained and demonstrated the multiple stages of the garment life cycle within the SMETA and Fast Forward approved Factory. The multiple stages informed to the group included; fabric consumption, production efficiencies, garment fitting sessions and much more.

Shortly after the tour of the Factory Floor, the group were taken to the Fashion Studio. Here they were able to review the processes such as; grading, sampling and the patterns all contributing to the garment life cycle. Here they also learnt the significance of communication between a supplier and a Factory.

Overall, the visit was a success! The group of designers gained significant understanding of how the complete garment lifecycle is achieved ethically at a Manufacturing Factory in the UK. We do look forward to welcoming the Creative Coast back to Fashion Enter in the near future, Here are few quotes made after the visit:

“I have learnt from the visit, that manufacturing on a smaller scale for start-up companies and upcoming designers is not dead and has a future” Liam

“The visit was excellent, there was so much details I learnt from the workshop that I can pass onto students with small/ short production runs” Sharon

“I have learnt that there are significant manufacturing and mentoring support available to start-up businesses. I have also learnt the methods and equipment used to maintain an ethically transparent Factory” Francine

"Our meeting was so informative and I’m so excited about finding a great ‘fit’ for our fashion students garment production and gaining a greater understanding of your business model" Sharon