Designers, entrepreneurs, manufacturers,

buyers and anyone related in the world of fashion need an outlet or a connection to get the word out about their next “BIG thing”. The million dollar question on every budding fashion aficionado’s mind is where do you start? How do you build your connections? How do you reach out to potential clientele? District2.CO has reached out to several organizations in the City of Los Angeles to give you the WHO, WHAT and WHY on these influential apparel industry organizations.

1. Fashion Business Incorporated (FBI) /

WHO THEY ARE: The Fashion Business, Inc. a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, provides the fashion industry with entrepreneurial development, resources and training, to support its growth and profitability. The FBI offers targeted business education, sourcing, networking opportunities, marketing and consulting services through its resource center and business partnerships. FBI exists to ensure the ongoing vibrancy of the American fashion industry.

WHAT THEY DO: FBI provides regular webinars for members all around the world by providing a global platform for garment industry specific business development and training for creative fashion designers and existing businesses.

WHY YOU NEED THEM: Currently, they have a few things in the pipeline right now that will sustain their growth in the garment industry. From collaborating with another entity to train out-of-work workers for domestic production to planning to produce two fashion shows that highlight local designers during L.A. Fashion Week, FBI is definitely keeping their finger on the pulse of Fashion in Los Angeles. After notifying founder Frances Harder that she was our #1 pick for being influential in the L.A. Fashion Industry, she shared, “I feel very proud with what I started with. A good idea has now grown into such a valuable asset to the apparel industry. The FBI could not have achieved such an honor without the help of our amazing board of industry professionals and the many other people who have helped to make the FBI such a great resource.”

2. California Fashion Association /

WHO THEY ARE: The California Fashion Association (CFA) is a non-profit organization that was organized and established in 1995 to provide information for business expansion and growth to the apparel and textile industry of California. The CFA has now been the association for the apparel and textile community for almost 15 years.

WHAT THEY DO: The CFA provides a forum for industry networking and current issues. Elbow rubbing aside, they also outline global sourcing options and export opportunities in the apparel industry as well as analyze the application of apparel-related technology, its economic impact and labor law compliance for both domestic and international growth. A win-win for the fashion tech-savvy, networking individual.

WHY YOU NEED THEM: With their extensive knowledge in the domestic and international market, a membership with this organization will provide the fashion entrepreneur access to seminars, events, marketing, branding your apparel product and networking. As an eager and “thirsty” fashion virtuoso, this organization is a MUST to gain the experience and insight on building your portfolio.

3. Fashion District Business Improvement District (FDBID) /

WHO THEY ARE: The LA Fashion District BID is a non-profit organization that covers 110 blocks in downtown Los Angeles. General boundaries are from 7th Street (and on Los Angeles Street to 6th Street) to the north, Santa Monica 10-Freeway to the South, Spring and Main Streets to the west and San Pedro Street to the east. The LA Fashion District spans 100 blocks. It’s all here: apparel and accessories for the entire family, textiles, flowers, even live/work lofts.

WHAT THEY DO: Fashion can be a dirty job, but somebody’s got to do it. Fashion District BID is dedicated to making the community a clean, safe and friendly place to work, shop, do business and live through cleaning, safety and marketing programs. The Fashion District maintains their stamp in bringing apparel and accessories for the entire family, textiles, flowers and even live/work lofts. Their website features all of California Market Center’s (CAL-MART) wholesalers and distributors which is another blog in itself as to how CAL-MART serves as a retail epicenter for L.A. Fashion. In addition to the website, they have a FREE on-the-go APP that contains a directory and a super-cool “save car location” feature that easily leads you back to your car after navigating the, sometimes confusing, streets and alleys of downtown Los Angeles.

WHY YOU NEED THEM: With the vast coverage area in Los Angeles that is in place for Fashion District BID, the area has become a central point for any fashion entrepreneur to enhance their brand as well as develop collaboration or finding possible avenues to grow their product albeit through fashion shows, sample sales and guerilla marketing. These organizations are a sample of what a budding fashion entrepreneur would need to know in order to get their foot, or stiletto, in the door of the garment industry. Many of these organizations provide you with direction and won’t leave you perplexed about your next move. It’s up to you to strut your way through this ever-evolving world of fashion as technology continues to thrive and grow on a daily basis. This blog, courtesy of District2.Co, is meant to link designer, consumer, manufacturer, vendor and entrepreneur, and so forth in the hopes of building connections to strengthen business development.


By Jerod Williams And Cassie Betts

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