top of page

How To Connect Within The Fashion Industry


group of fashion people at a happy hour gathering
ifd Community Building Happy Hour

Are you passionate about fashion design & creating and looking to connect with like-minded artisans? Joining a fashion organization can be a fantastic way to hone your skills, gain inspiration, and build meaningful relationships within a supportive community. Whether you're an aspiring designer eager to learn the ropes, a seasoned professional seeking new opportunities, or a hobbyist looking to elevate your craft, there are numerous organizations out there that cater to various interests and expertise levels. In this blog post, we’ll explore a range of creative organizations that can provide the perfect platform for you to grow, learn, and connect with others who share your creative passion. Read on for our top places and suggestions for success in connecting within the fashion industry.




inside fashion design group photo
ifd Connect Community

Fashion Design Collectives:

  • ifd Connect: As an ifd Insider, you join in our collective community that bring together fashion industry pros who are seeking new opportunities and connections, to participate in networking events and mentorship programs, prioritizing ethical and sustainable practices so that we can build a supportive community that empowers each other to reach new heights in our careers.


  • The Fashion Designers' Alliance (FDA): Offers networking opportunities, mentorship, industry events, and collaboration on creative projects. Members can benefit from shared resources and feedback from fellow designers. Website: fashiondesignersalliance.com


  • The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA): Provides industry recognition, professional development, business support, and access to exclusive events and resources. Membership includes access to CFDA’s educational programs and advocacy efforts. Website: cfda.com


  • The Fashion Group International (FGI): Offers a platform for networking, professional development, and industry insights. Members can attend conferences, seminars, and workshops, and access FGI’s publications and online resources. Website: fgi.org


  • Fashion Mingle: Fashion Mingle is a global network for fashion industry professionals. With over 10,000 members in 200+ countries, we have the fastest growing network in the world, connecting fashion pros to the resources and services they need to grow their businesses and careers. Website: https://fashionmingle.com

landing page of fashion mingle.com
Fashion Mingle

Sewing and Craft Clubs:

  • Association of Sewing Design Professionals: Their mission is to empower sewing and design professionals to succeed in business. With a vision is to be the global leader advancing professional standards in the sewing and design industry.

  • Website: https://sewingprofessionals.com

  • The American Sewing Guild (ASG): Provides educational opportunities through workshops, classes, and events. Members can connect with local chapters, participate in sewing contests, and access exclusive resources and discounts. Website: asg.org

photo of a male sitting at a desk doing fashion design sketches
Association of Sewing Design Professionals
  • Craftsy: Offers online classes, tutorials, and community features where members can share projects, ask questions, and receive feedback. Access to a wide range of topics beyond sewing, including baking, gardening, and more. Website: craftsy.com


  • Meetup.com Sewing and Crafting Groups: Local groups provide regular meetups for sharing tips, techniques, and project ideas. Members benefit from the camaraderie, inspiration, and hands-on learning opportunities. Website: meetup.com (search for local groups in your area)


Fashion Meetup Groups:

  • Fashionista Meetup: Connects fashion enthusiasts and professionals through events such as clothing swaps, fashion shows, and workshops. Benefits include networking opportunities and staying updated with local fashion events.

  • Website: meetup.com


  • Fashion Networking Events on Eventbrite: Offers access to a variety of fashion-related events, including industry panels, networking mixers, and pop-up shops. Great for expanding professional networks and learning from industry experts. Website: Eventbrite


  • Young Fashion Professionals (YFP) on LinkedIn: Provides a platform for connecting with other young professionals in the fashion industry, sharing job opportunities, and participating in discussions and events. Website: LinkedIn

  • ifd Connect: also holds quarterly meet ups- check out the website to find the schedule and locations. Website: insider.insidefashiondesign.net



Textile Society Website
Textile Society Website

Textile Arts Guilds:


  • The Handweavers Guild of America (HGA): Provides educational programs, workshops, and conferences for weavers, spinners, and dyers. Members can access scholarships, grants, and participate in juried exhibitions. Website: weavespindye.org


  • The Surface Design Association (SDA): Focuses on surface design techniques and offers workshops, conferences, and exhibitions. Members benefit from a supportive community, resources, and opportunities to showcase their work. Website: surfacedesign.org


Fashion for Good landing page
Fashion For Good

Fashion Entrepreneurship Incubators:

  • Check out this list from Failory.com: Top 33 Fashion Accelerators and Incubators in 2024


  • Fashion Incubator San Francisco (FiSF): Offers mentorship, workspace, business training, and access to industry networks. Members receive guidance on business development, marketing, and production. Website: fashionsf.org


  • The Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator (BF+DA): Provides workspace, mentorship, sustainable production resources, and business support. Members have access to a community of designers and entrepreneurs, as well as technical resources. Website: bkaccelerator.com


  • Fashion Zone at Ryerson University: Offers mentorship, workspace, funding opportunities, and access to industry networks. Provides resources such as business training, prototype development, and market research support. Website: fashionzone.ca


fashion revolution poster that reads "I am a community buildier
Fashion Revolution Campaign Poster

Fashion Sustainability Communities:

  • Fashion Revolution: Advocates for ethical and sustainable fashion practices. Members can participate in campaigns, events, and educational programs focused on sustainability and transparency in the fashion industry. Website: fashionrevolution.org


  • Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC): Provides tools and resources for improving sustainability performance in the apparel and footwear industries. Members can collaborate on sustainability initiatives and access the Higg Index tools. Website: apparelcoalition.org


  • Ethical Writers & Creatives (EWC): Connects writers and creatives focused on ethical and sustainable practices. Members benefit from networking, collaboration opportunities, and access to resources and events focused on ethical living and sustainability. Website: ethicalwriters.co



Fashion Illustration Clubs:

  • The Society of Illustrators (SOI): Offers exhibitions, competitions, and educational programs for illustrators. Members can network with other illustrators, attend events, and showcase their work. Website: societyillustrators.org


  • The Association of Illustrators (AOI): Provides business support, legal advice, and professional development opportunities. Members can access resources, competitions, and exhibitions to promote their work. Website: theaoi.com


  • Urban Sketchers: Offers a global community for artists who enjoy drawing on location. Members can participate in sketching events, share their work online, and connect with other sketchers worldwide. Website: urbansketchers.org


More ways of finding and joining local fashion-focused meetup groups:

  1. Visit Meetup.com and create a free account.

  2. Search for Fashion Groups: Use the search bar to look for keywords like "fashion," "sewing," "crafting," "design," or any specific interest you have.

  3. Filter by Location: Enter your city or ZIP code to find groups near you.

  4. Join a Group: Browse through the listings, read group descriptions, and join groups that match your interests. Most groups are free to join, but some may charge a membership fee.

  5. Participate in Events: Once you join a group, you can RSVP to upcoming events, attend meetings, and start connecting with other members.


2 females at a computer working on a project
Design Mentoring

11 Beneftis & Support Provided by Fashion Entrepreneurship Incubators:

  1. Mentorship: Access to experienced mentors who provide guidance on business strategy, marketing, production, and more.

  2. Workspace: Dedicated office or studio space equipped with necessary tools and resources.

  3. Business Training: Workshops and seminars covering topics such as business planning, financial management, branding, and legal issues.

  4. Funding Opportunities: Access to grants, investors, and other funding sources to help grow your business.

  5. Networking: Opportunities to connect with industry professionals, potential collaborators, and other entrepreneurs.

  6. Technical Resources: Access to equipment, software, and technical expertise needed for product development and production.

  7. Market Research: Support with market analysis, consumer research, and trend forecasting to inform business decisions.

  8. Production Support: Guidance on manufacturing processes, supply chain management, and sustainable practices.

  9. Promotion and Exposure: Opportunities to showcase your work through events, exhibitions, and media coverage facilitated by the incubator.

  10. Support and Feedback: You'll have a supportive network of peers who can offer feedback, advice, and encouragement as you pursue your passion for fashion.

  11. Access to Resources: Many groups and communities offer access to resources such as equipment, workspace, materials, and industry contacts that can be valuable for your creative endeavors or business aspirations.


female hailing a cab in NYC
catching a taxi cab NYC

By City:

New York City, USA:

  • Fashion Group International (FGI) New York: fginy.org

  • The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA): cfda.com

  • New York Fashion Week Community: No specific website, events are organized by various entities.

  • NYC Fashion Meetup Group: meetup.com/NYC-Fashion-Meetup-Group


collage of images of fashion folks gatherings
ifd Connect Community Gatherings

Portland, OR, USA: ifd Connect:  

  • ifd ( Inside Fashion Design Connect) *Based in Portland, and expanding to cities around the country- watch for upcoming events near you! Website: www.insider.insidefashiondesign.net.


Paris, France:


Milan, Italy:

  • Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana (CNMI): cameramoda.it

  • Milan Fashion Week Community: (No specific website, events are organized by various entities.)

  • Milano Moda Graduate: milanomodagraduate.com

  • Milan Fashion Networking Group: (No specific website, try searching on platforms like Meetup.com.)


London, UK:


Tokyo, Japan:

  • Japan Fashion Week Organization (JFW): jfw.jp

  • Tokyo Fashion Week Community: (No specific website, events are organized by various entities.)

  • Tokyo Fashion Entrepreneurs Meetup: meetup.com/Tokyo-Fashion-Entrepreneurs

  • Tokyo Fashion Business Network: (No specific website, try searching on platforms like Meetup.com.)


Group of Friends smiling laughing
Group of Friends

Los Angeles, USA:


Berlin, Germany:


Sydney, Australia:



Have you found a supportive fashion industry community yet? 

We invite you!


Join our vibrant community at Inside Fashion Design Connect, where conscious fashion design professionals come together to learn, grow, and connect.


Whether you're an industry veteran or just starting your journey, you'll find a wealth of resources, mentorship, and collaboration opportunities designed to help you thrive. .


Free and open to all those interested in connecting, gaining insights and inspirations and joining us to make a positive impact in the fashion industry.



Comments

Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
bottom of page