This coming week, the World Design Capital Helsinki 2012 will be taking a broad look at Finnish fashion and discussing the industry\'s efforts to break into international markets. The host of events will attract a wide range of players in the fashion industry as well as members of the international media in Helsinki on a scale never seen before in Finland.
The series of fashion-related events may in time evolve into a Fashion Week along the lines of those we\'re seeing internationally. The entity includes the Helsinki Fashion Summit, Aalto University fashion show Näytös 2012, new Finnish fashion magazine, SSAW, and a series of events held in Hanasaari, Espoo.
In Finland, there are a number of bodies dedicated to the promotion of internationalisation in different fields of design and art. For the fashion industry, it\'s a different case. The young generation of talented designers are left to carve their place in the global industry on their own.
“Finnish fashion today stands up to international comparison. The industry deserves promoting, but this calls for support as well as new types of events and practices. The focus of WDC Helsinki 2012 fashion-related programme is on promoting the internationalisation and networking of Finnish designers and fashion brands,” says Pekka Timonen, Executive Director of World Design Capital Helsinki 2012.
The Helsinki Fashion Summit will gather together top influential members of the fashion industry from Finland and abroad to Bio Rex cinema on Thursday 24 May. The day seminar will feature discussion on how fashion can be turned into a profitable business. Renowned fashion designers Maarten Van Der Horst (The Netherlands), Henrik Vibskov (Denmark), Christoffer Lundman (Sweden), as well as Lulu Kennedy, creator of the Fashion East event (UK), and Robin Schulié, buyer for Maria Luisa Paris (France) will be among those sharing their experiences.
Students in the Fashion and Clothing Design programme at Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture organise an annual fashion show, Näytös. Held in Suvilahti, Helsinki, on Friday 25 May as part of the WDC Helsinki 2012 programme, Näytös 2012 will be parading the works of Aalto students as well as the latest collections of labels formed by Aalto University alumni: Sasu Kauppi, Ensaemble, R/H and Saara Lepokorpi.
The fashion show attracts an audience of over thousand people every year, including many of Finland\'s most influential media and professionals in fashion and design. Thanks to the WDC Helsinki 2012 year, the number of influential members of the international fashion media at the event, ranging from A Magazine to Italian Vogue, will be higher than ever. Journalists will be following the fashion-related events on the WDC Helsinki 2012 programme for three days.
Näytös 2012 can also be watched at home in Finland. Live stream of Aalto students\' thesis project show is available online on Yle Areena on 25 May, starting at 7pm. A live broadcast of the alumni show can be viewed on the Yle Teema channel on 25 May at 8pm, and leading up to the live broadcasts, Yle TV1 will be airing a two-part report on young Finnish fashion designers earlier in the week.
Friday night 25 May will see the launch of SSAW, a new Finnish fashion magazine targeted at the international market. With its international roster of names with backgrounds in Vogue, Another Magazine, i-D, VMan, Acne Paper, Fantastic Man, and Elle US, the publication is quite unique in Finland. The magazine will feature shots by renowned professionals of collections by Finnish fashion designers, taken in Paris, Stockholm, Los Angeles and St. Petersburg. In addition to fashion editorials, the magazine will have interviews and fashion-related articles.
Also part of the WDC Helsinki 2012 week dedicated to fashion is a body of events that examine the relationship between fashion and sustainable development. Held at the Swedish-Finnish cultural centre in Hanasaari, Espoo, these events include the Green clothing – sustainable development in fashion seminar on Tuesday 22 May, and the Ekofashion exhibition on ecological fashion design.
Helsinki • 2012-12-05 •
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