Member Profiles | Heather Femia

How did you land at your position? 
The path to my position as Corporate Fashion Director for Nordstrom all started when I was in high school and began producing the high school fashion shows.  That led to me working with local retailers to produce small events in their stores.  I met a fantastic mentor that gave me a chance to work on larger events in a support capacity.  As I attended college I began to take on more responsibility with the company Thalhimers in the Southeast.  My mentor, Kathy Valentine, moved to the DC area to work for Nordstrom.  Kathy recruited me to come join her.  At first I handled fashion events, forecastitng, and fashion press for one store.   Over time it grew to a region, then to be the director of all the regional coordinators.
My current job as a DJ came from me wanting more control over my schedule.  For years I collected music for fashion shows, and trend hunted in night spots in New York, DC, even Paris and Los Angeles on occasion.  I took the music collection and my knowledge of the history of club music and began to self learn the technical aspects of playing.
Where do you find your inspiration/motivation?
I think creative people can’t help but find inspiration.  I will say I always return from travel inspired though.  Of course the usual fashion coverage in magazines and internet is helpful.  Movies,  and music videos are always full of inspiration.  I also find counter culture very inspiring.  Snowboard videos and magazines, music festivals, and yoga culture all feed my inspiration.
Why do you call the DC area home?
I never thought I’d stay in DC, I thought it was too conservative for me.  That changed though because I met my husband here and his company that he built from scratch is here.  I’m happy to say that DC has blossomed with artful people and places, and I have mellowed a bit.
What in your career are you most proud of?
When I run into people I worked with on our most creative projects that took 100% effort from so many people- (models, lighting designers, hair and make up artistes, a whole team of stylists I adored, fearless support from the executives, and a team of behind the scenes staff that were amazing) they always have such proud and happy memories of what we accomplished.  Who new at the time that would mean the most.  Now, as a DJ, I’m proud that I have gained the respect of accomplished people in my field who I once looked to as mentors.
Who new at the time that would mean the most.  Now, as a DJ, I’m proud that I have gained the respect of accomplished people in my field who I once looked to as mentors.
Tell us about a time you felt you had failed.
When I was first starting to play live as a DJ, I often was not 100% happy with things, but I used any disappointment as fuel to make the next time better.  In fashion, when I first decided to retire, it was difficult.  So much of my identity was based on my job.  For a while, I felt a bit lost.  I missed my friends from work, and I missed the creative outlet.  It took some rebuilding and some fearlessness to do something new.
What do you see as the biggest value of an FGI membership?
For me it means keeping in the loop.  It also means a direct connection to so many the creative people in different aspects of the market in DC.  It will always be something I keep up with.  I remember when I was first a member and I attended a lot of events in New York when I was there for business.  It was completely amazing to be in the same room as so many people I had previously just read about.  This is an option open to any member.  That is priceless.

Spring 2017 Fashion Business Workshops

A Workshop series aimed to provide fashion and creative industry focused entrepreneurs with knowledge, tools, and resources that will grow and strengthen their businesses.

May 16, 2017
Lessons on Legal

May 23, 2017
Business of Sourcing and Manufacturing

June 1, 2017
FW17 Trend Presentation + Marketing and Social Media Trends

All Events – 6:30p-8:00p
Canvas Co/Work
1203 19th Street NW Washington, DC 20036

Tickets per Workshop
FGIDC Members – $15
Non-Members – $25
At the Door – $30

We look forward to connecting, learning and engaging with you at the #FGIDCWorkshops!

Eventbrite - The Fashion Group International® of DC presents Fashion Business Workshops

Member Profiles | Barnette Holston

 

We are excited to profile another amazing FGIDC member Barnette Holston this week.  Barnette is definitely a men’s fashion leader in the DC Metro!
How did you land your position?

I’ve always had a love of fashion. However, I never knew how I could fit in the industry. I loved writing about fashion but never really considered being an influencer until someone suggested I showcase my style and get in front of the camera.

I want guys to be able to embrace fashion and maybe learn a little along the way.

Where do you find your inspiration/motivation?

I find inspiration in a variety of things. The change in seasons, a special look from a favorite designer or maybe even sites I see when I travel play into my style. I like to look at these things and find a way to make them my own.

Why do you call the DC area home?

I have lived in the area since I was 2 with brief stints away for college and my first job. DC is an amazingly vibrant city. It has all the activity of a big city but with the charm of feeling like a small town.

What in your career are you most proud of?

I don’t know if it’s proud but I feel very honored that people look to me for style inspiration. I like to think that I have a voice and I’m grateful that I get a chance to be heard.

Tell us about a time you felt you had failed.

It’s hard when you are putting forth your best effort and brands or agencies don’t like your work. Rejection can be very difficult. However, it just gives me the determination to work with those that appreciate what I do.

What do you see as the biggest value of an FGI membership?

I believe it will help me continue to establish myself as an influencer in men’s fashion and lifestyle. I believe it’s a great way to make connections.

 

Member Profiles | Maggy Francois

 

We are excited to profile another amazing FGIDC member Maggy Francois this week.  Maggy is definitely a mover and shaker in the DC Metro.  Enjoy!

How did you land at your position?

Majority of us love fashion one way or the other. Many of us know it and some don’t. I never knew my love for passion until my 2nd year in college. People write off fashion as being very materialistic but in reality it is not. We have to wear clothes every single day, it’s a necessity, apart of us and who we are. My parents introduced me to this crazy world of fashion and they didn’t even know it. When I was in college I was really focused on becoming a nurse, and quickly realized that was not the route I wanted to take. I challenged myself and changed my major and from then on, my focus was to build a business that takes dedication, lots of time management and EDUCATE through DESIGN. Being in the fashion industry has allowed me to now grow into film, entertainment and many more opportunities.

 

“There isn’t ever one time we fail. I still go through at least one failure every year that teaches me a lesson on how to proceed and keep it moving. Failures are my teachable moments.”

 

Where do you find your inspiration/motivation?

Once upon a time, I posted one of my favorite quotes ” Black women are made of out of brown sugar, honey, cocoa and gold. And the strength of ten thousand moons.” I still do not know how I do it!! I have several mentors who keep me grounded. They are not afraid to point out my mistakes or provide me with advice that helps me stay grounded. It’s not easy and every day is a hustle but when you love what you do it’s inspiring for yourself and others.

Why do you call the DC area home?

When I moved here from NYC, I did not plan to stay but ended up making it a home. I am die hard New Yorker and DC doesn’t exactly have the bright lights of NYC, but it does have a tiny bit of electric energy in the air. It’s a very different kind of energy, of course but it works for the people that live here. Also, it’s a booming area for creatives like me, full of wannabe celebrities in DC than NYC, …sorry I had to say it 🙂 and many more movers and shakers.

What in your career are you most proud of?

Being able to encourage young creatives to pursue their passion is very rewarding. I am that voice that helps make them turn their fashion for passion to life. Many people look at fashion as a fantasy world, but it’s a billion dollar business and why not show our youth how to monetize doing what you love.

Tell us about a time you felt you had failed?

There isn’t ever one time we fail. I still go through at least one failure every year that teaches me a lesson on how to proceed and keep it moving. Failures are my teachable moments.

What do you see as the biggest value of an FGI membership?

FGI is a great support to help building your brand through networking. In addition, FGI meets the needs of the fashion design industry and provides the knowledge and expertise needed.

Follow Maggy:

@FancyFrancois

 

Cocktails & Conversations With Creative DC Influencers

On Tuesday, March 21st an amazing group of  creative professionals enjoyed thought provoking conversations at Cocktails & Conversations at Locale Workspace.  FGIDC Director Robin Fisher and the 2017-2018 board greeted all the influencers and guests as they arrived.  The evening’s featured creative influencers included: Monling Lee (2016 Rising Star Winner), Hunt Laudi Studio and Color Index; Virginia Arrisueño, DeNada; Kerra Michele Huerta ( 2016 Rising Star Winner), Apartment Envy, Kerra Michele Interiors, and Bureau; Davin Gentry (2016 Rising Star Winner), Premium Co.; Becky Waddell, Be Clean Shop; Kevin Hallums (2016 Rising Star Winner), Premium Co.. FGIDC members and prospective members enjoyed great music as they sipped their cocktails, and discussed their future plans.