The Fashion Company of T&T (FashionTT) has led a dynamic initiative through the Value Chain Investment Programme (VCIP) which serves as one of the core projects of the Strategic Plan for the local fashion industry and kicks off its Global Value Chain (GVC) thrust with an immersive merchandising campaign positioning its eleven frontline designers, readying them to take on the world as export-worthy, innovative and competitive brand ambassadors of our Caribbean aesthetic.
General Manager of FashionTT, Lisa Marie Daniel, speaks confidently of the campaign which culminates in a Virtual Trade Mission between September 20 and 24.
“The eleven companies at the pinnacle of the VCIP in the global value chain are renowned, poised to capture uncharted territories and ready to continue the drive of promoting our Trinidad and Tobago markets to the world.”
The eleven designers who have qualified are Claudia Pegus, Heather Jones, The Cloth, Ecliff Elie, Charu Lochan Dass, Neha Karina, 1ndividual Aesthetic, Genesis Swimwear, The Hideout Clothing and Meiling.
Creative Director for this GVC tier is fashion impresario, Richard Young, who is no stranger to Caribbean aesthetic advocacy and who himself has been merchandising and positioning Caribbean designers regionally and in the Diaspora, for the past thirty years. He affirms that “our inherent exhibitionism, imbued with our Carnivalesque personality, puts us at the forefront of modern, cutting edge uniquely appealing style for which the global niche markets yearn. This much sought-after style, with its ingenious, indigenous and inimitable features, is now ready to take the world by storm. So that, strategic positioning and measurable networking are the order of the day.”
On feature, are three of the GVC designers who express the feel-good spirit which is part of the tapestry of our Caribbean style.
The Hideout Clothing (THC) presents a fashion-savvy style that is egalitarian in spirit yet still possessing a true-to-self relatability and pushing a conscious “head” and a good-vibes feel. Sebastien Gibert of The Hideout Clothing asserts that it’s an “on-the-hustle’”style that identifies with a grassroots subculture yet shouting a come-up sensibility.
The brand possesses a duality of influence. On the one hand, it’s all about trending normcore streetwear set in comfortable relief against unassuming “yardie” ambience, but above all claiming a sense of “cool.” On the other, it’s a rebel-without-a-cause free spirit translated into a fashion identity intrinsically insurgent but achieving great expectations. It is born out of a subversive style yet acknowledging the ideals of a modern self-made entrepreneur.
The style evokes juxtaposition—aspirational yet renegade, with a military-meets-revolutionary style that still aspires for the good life. Notwithstanding, THC’s rejection for extravagance, the brand pursues a carefree sense of luxury with no pretensions, just a comfortable-in-one’s-own-skin, feel-good vibe. Meiling is symbolic of archetypal style. Her style is uncluttered style with a ventilated aplomb, that celebrates less-is-more energy. She believes in making a statement without saying a word and expressing the silent power of style.
The brand is all about sustainable fashion with a perennial appeal, never going out of style but staying on course with global fashion direction and on-trend with lifestyle panache. At Meiling, classic staples meet understated luxe, resulting in self-assured, fresh, au courant, modern elegance.
Meiling resonates all-inclusive ease laced with subtle innuendos and freedom-of-choice possibility, in quintessential island harmony. To her, it’s all about balance, proportion silhouette and detail that herald our Caribbean style but moreover, claim a cosmopolitan identity and an eclectic sensibility.
The Meiling brand reflects a timeless, spatial, liberating style, free of encumbrance and testifies to our human equality making for a real feel-good call to action. It’s a fashion blueprint recognising simplicity over complexity, that’s the long and short of it!
J’Angelique celebrates individuality and prefers dressing the client who possesses a fearless spirit. Designer Janelle Forde is passionate about expressing elegance, unabashedly. Her fashion mantra is flowing but functional style for the modern-day Diva. One can say her dream client is a newfangled Aphrodite, whose effortless self-confidence is all about feel-good energy.
“One is born with style, one does not buy style!” exclaims this prolific creative whose foray with style is multi-dimensional, ranging from Carnival costume to casual wear to red-carpet sass.
J’Angelique craves being a legacy brand, through presenting consistent and enduring style. Her eclectic biography in the creative industry equips her with a penchant for expressing emotive, enriching and storied capture in her design thinking. She is all about culture, relishes diversity and is peacock proud of her Caribbean roots, portrayed resplendently in her Carnival designs.
Always ready to establish partnerships to forge a new way, the best way, an authentic way. She has always been ‘pivoting’, for persistence is her driving force and ‘do it and move with the tide’, her motto.