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The Q’BFFI Experience

Last weekend, I had the pleasure of attending the Queen’s Business Forum on the Fashion Industry, or affectionately known as Q’BFFI.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with Q’BFFI, it’s a 3 day event organized entirely by students in the Commerce Society, which aims to blend the world of fashion and business.  Students from all faculties, and even schools across Canada, came together for this conference.  Speakers of high calibre, ranging from the executive editor of ELLE Magazine (pretty darn cool I thought) to some great up-and-coming entrepreneurs based in design and e-commerce, delivered inspirational presentations.  Delegates also participated in a case challenge, but with a twist.  Half of it was your typical bizkid case analysis, and the other half required some serious creativity.  Teams of 10 were formed and then they were challenged to create a prom dress in support of a charity called the Corsage Project. This project aims to give underprivileged young women the entire prom experience.  Evidently… this wasn’t a typical prom dress as we were given quite the eclectic mix of materials-very project runway-esque.  How does one create a “wearable” dress out of garbage bags, blue mesh and bubble wrap?  You would be surprised at the creativity some people possess… Here’s a design from one of the teams:

 

Needless to say, it was a weekend well spent hiding from the chilly Kingston weather.  What I learned most from this experience is that a career in the fashion industry can be so diverse.  Whether you’re more of a left- brain thinker or you’re interested in the traditional art/design route, there is an opportunity for everyone.  Fashion is so broad, and certainly isn’t limited only to the jobs made popular on TV and in movies.  Roles like fashion buyers, bloggers and even consultants are highly coveted in this industry.  In fact, an unconventional background may even give you an edge over others simply because you’re different!  Just because your strengths lie, perhaps in a more technical aspect rather than art or design, don’t rule yourself out as a potential candidate if you truly love this fashion. If you’ve been told that success stems from passion, it’s not cheesy, it’s true.   So for all you aspiring fashionistas flipping through the pages of Vogue, remember that without the talent you possess right now, this multi-million dollar magazine would probably just be pages of plain white paper stapled together.

Yours Creatively,

Sherry Wu

Illustration courtesy of Q’BFFI.