Launched at the end of 2017, the European programme UNITED FASHION includes seven European organisations guiding young fashion designers with bases in Brussels (MAD Brussels), Antwerp (Flanders DC), Berlin (German Fashion Council), Riga (Baltic Fashion Federation), Skopje (Fashion Week End Skopje), Lisbon (Moda Lisboa), and Lille/Roubaix (Maisons de Mode).
From its very start, United Fashion’s core aim has been to address the realities confronting young designers, be they problems dealing with production, sourcing or distribution in contrast to their larger, more established fashion industry competitors. Launched by MAD Brussels Fashion and Design Platform, this programme is devoted to encouraging “a culture of designers” in Europe, helping young talents become real fashion entrepreneurs, and improving their competitive edge on the international level.
Over a four-year period, United Fashion’s calendar-based programme has given and will continue to give 150 European designers the opportunity to show their collections while learning about different markets and developing their skills in the following areas: fashion technology, sustainable fashion, production, technical expertise, and commercial distribution.
In concrete terms, this means the organisations take turns hosting each other at major events in their home countries by inviting two or three designers from each of their counterpart organisations to take part. It was through this partnership that Maisons de Mode designers have been invited to Berlin, Skopje, Riga, Antwerp and Lisbon to represent France’s young creativity. The programme will come to a close in Brussels in 2021.
Lisbon opened its doors to the United Fashion project at the beginning of March 2020, right after Paris Fashion Week. It also allowed the uninitiated to discover ModaLisboa Fashion Week.
Fifteen European designers were able to find out about producing small runs of their collections in Portugal through conferences and workshops. These designers could also show their latest collections in a showroom reserved for professionals and through a unique presentation to the general public.
Representing Maisons de Mode were Voir(e) and Lucie Brochard.võ.
It was such a pleasure to discover Portugal way of life and its vision of fashion business.