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State of Wonder

Fashion's Futures: Designers Speak Out On Industry Challenges


We were thrilled to take part in a panel discussion last weekend at the Museum of Contemporary Craft in Portland, on Prototyping Fashion’s Futures - even if we didn’t feel properly dressed!

From left to right, Davora Lindner, Jennifer Guarino, Elizabeth Dye, Britt Howard, and Rosemary Robinson.

From left to right, Davora Lindner, Jennifer Guarino, Elizabeth Dye, Britt Howard, and Rosemary Robinson.

April Baer/Oregon Public Boadcasting

The Museum is hosting an exhibition this summer called Fashioning Cascadia: the Social Life of the Garment. This discussion was part of a day-long symposium, examining indie apparel from several aesthetic and economic angles. There were so many interesting comments. This excerpt focuses largely on what the panelists said was a key problem across brands - finding people to put their products together. 

April moderated, and here’s a list of the panelists.

  • Elizabeth Dye - A designer based in Portland known largely for bridal. Former owner of the English Department, a downtown boutique and open studio that Elizabeth owned and operated for 8 years.
  • Jennifer Guarino - VP of leather goods at Shinola, which is in the process of creating a heritage brand from Detroit. Formerly, Guarino was CEO of JL Hume Co.
  • Britt Howard and Rosemary Robinson - founders of Portland Garment Factory, an independent, lady-owned manufacturing house in PDX that produces work for clients as well as designing and manufacturing their own line, HOUSELINE.
  • Davora Lindner - co-founder, co-designer and head of marketing at Prairie Underground, an independent clothing line designed in Seattle and cut-and-sewn in LA with sustainable materials made of organic cotton and hemp.

To hear the whole discussion, you can subscribe to the Museum’s podcast. We hear it’ll be up in a week or so. The exhibition runs through October.

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