PROGRAMS

UP COMING EVENTS:

JANUARY 10th - 21c Hotel Museum, Bentonville

LINDA ROWE THOMAS: DESIGNING MY DESTINY... BEYOND THE SCARS

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosts Designer Linda Rowe Thomas for her presentation of 'Designing My Destiny... Beyond the Scars'

Linda Rowe Thomas is the designer and CEO of the Romás by Linda Rowe Thomas luxury apparel brand. Thomas is an awarded fashion designer, author, philanthropist, and motivational speaker who uses her adversities to inspire others. Thomas currently owns the only designer showroom and production house in the state of Arkansas.

She founded her couture fashion brand Romás by Linda Rowe Thomas and later founded Designing Hope, a 501(c)(3) organization benefiting burn survivors. In addition to showing at over 10 Fashion weeks around the world, Linda is the first and only burn survivor to showcase on the Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week Platform. Celebrity clientele includes: Erica Ash, actress from the hit STARZ series, Survivor's Remorse as well as other notable actresses, singers, and professional athletes.

With a number of accolades under her needle and thread, Linda was named “One to Watch” in 2011 by the New York Examiner. Thomas was also named among the top fashion designers of 2015 and 2016 by the Examiner. Additional awards include:

• The Delta Challenge Coin on behalf of President Barak Obama
• 2017 Woman of Excellence Award

This event is hosted by The Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum, a 501c3 non-profit dedicated to supporting the arts in Arkansas. This program is made possible by a generous grant from the Walton Family Foundation.

JANUARY 12th, Drake Field, Fayetteville - SOLD OUT

INTRODUCTION TO SEWING: BEGINNERS WORKSHOP

Want to learn how to sew, but don’t know where to start? This course is for beginners and will start with basics like how to thread a machine and reading a pattern. We will focus on equipping you will skills that will allow you to further your passion at home. Bring questions you may already have or just an inquisitive attitude. We are starting with the basics because every great design starts with accurate patterns and sewing straight seams. Sewing is an amazing skill that can allow your ideas to come to life. This course will help get you started on that journey.

Instructor Bio:

Ashley Little has been sewing since around the age of five. Taught by her mother, she can’t remember a time when sewing wasn’t a part of her life. Pursing her passion, she received a bachelor’s degree in Apparel Studies from The University of Arkansas in 2007. After working in the industry, she decided to go back and get her master’s degree while teaching a sewing course at the U of A. Then in 2012 she started her own custom design and alterations business, Material Concepts. Over the past six years she has made everything from wedding gowns to suits for her clients. Then when NWA Fashion Week was rebooted in 2017, she was one of the designers in the first show and in the Spring of 2018, she launched her brand Ellen Elaine. Ashley comes from a family of creative minds with both grandmothers being artists and skilled designers. Then her mother passing along the tradition, she feels privileged to honor all of their memories by teaching others what they taught her.

This programming is made possible with generous support from the Walton Family Foundation.

 

JANUARY 19th, Center for Nonprofits, Springdale - Limited Availability

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum will be hosting an intermediate sewing course on January 19th at the Center for Nonprofits in Springdale. This course has a capacity of 10 participants, and will last for the entire day with a one hour lunch break.

Attendees are recommended to bring their own lunch. Light snacks and drinks will be provided.

INTERMEDIATE SEWING: DESIGNER WORKSHOP
Couture 101 - Demi-Couture Corset/Internal Garment Structure

(8 Contact Hours)
In this course students will acquire the knowledge of constructing internal garment components usually associated with couture design.

The final outcome will result in the construction of a piece of clothing that which can have range of use from intimate wear to bridal and evening dresses to season corset pieces.

This course will go over the following topics:

- Design / History (Brief presentation on couture and internal garment structures)
- Material and its uses
- Overview of final outcome (Teacher explains the muck up of what student will learn)
- Paper pattern building through draping on mannequin
- Pattern transfer into final fabric
- Go over fabric patterns
- Prep fabric for sewing
- Internal Structure “Crinoline”
- Boning Application
- External layers
- Fabric layering
- Lining
- Garment Closure
- Couture Finishing

Instructor Bio:
Richard Cotto is a master product developer, experienced production manager and multifaceted apparel designer. He has a fashion forward yet wearable aesthetic that focuses on promoting confidence and positive self image. He currently works as a Product Development Technician at Dillard's headquarters, working for brands such as Le Cremieux, Murano, and Roundtree and Yorke. He has participated in fashion weeks across the world, including St. Louis and Puerto Rico. He has participated in every NWA Fashion Week since the companies reboot in 2016.

This programming is made possible with generous support from the Walton Family Foundation.

Instructor Bio:
Richard Cotto is a master product developer, experienced production manager and multifaceted apparel designer. He has a fashion forward yet wearable aesthetic that focuses on promoting confidence and positive self image. He currently works as a Product Development Technician at Dillard's headquarters, working for brands such as Le Cremieux, Murano, and Roundtree and Yorke. He has participated in fashion weeks across the world, including St. Louis and Puerto Rico. He has participated in every NWA Fashion Week since the companies reboot in 2016.

This programming is made possible with generous support from the Walton Family Foundation.

EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum (AAFF) has announced the launch of a year long Educational Pilot Program made possible by a generous grant from the Walton Family Foundation.

AAFF’s Educational Pilot Program includes three main areas of programming:

  • Student Designer Showcases
  • Educational and Professional Development Workshops
  • Public Speaker Series

The Student Designer Showcase will launch the Educational Pilot Program during NWA Fashion Week’s Fall Shows on September 20-22 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. College-level and trade program students from across the state will participate in runway shows, in areas including production design, hair styling, makeup artistry, and photography. Students will have the opportunity to learn from mentors in their fields to gain hands-on experience in a live production setting. Throughout the next year AAFF will hold workshops and speaker series events that will revolve around fashion and its artistic and cultural ecosystem. These events will be programmed in collaboration with NWA Fashion Week as well as other local stakeholders.

IDLE CLASS MAGAZINE

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum (AAFF) has recently announced their new position as the publisher of The Idle Class Magazine.

The Idle Class has been Arkansas' only arts magazine since 2013, publishing quarterly editions on topics such as photography, storytelling, food, music, collecting and more. Focusing on the best undiscovered talent for poetry, prose, cinema, sound and more, The Idle Class has been a leader in the field for highlighting and supporting artistic talent from across the state.

 

Learn more at http://idleclassmag.com/

RUNWAY GRANTS

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum provides funding for designers based in the state of Arkansas to participate in fashion events throughout the year. Through a partnership with NWA Fashion Week, AAFF offers Runway Grants to creative and avant garde designers to showcase their designs during NWA Fashion Week in the Spring and Fall. Designers apply directly to Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum and are chosen by our selection committee. Runway grants covers the cost associated with purchasing runway time during NWA Fashion Week, including promotional, photographic and video services.

Application for NWA Fashion Week Spring 2019

MENTORSHIPS

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum works to create opportunities for aspiring young talent to work next to professionals in many fields related to art and fashion. Whether it is backstage at a fashion show, behind the camera at an editorial photoshoot, or in the board room, we strive to create spaces for young talent to learn from the best in the field.

Learn More

EMERGING DESIGNER AWARD

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum awards one designer annually with the the Emerging Designer Award during the NWA Fashion Week Fall Shows that take place in Fayetteville.

The following criteria apply in order for a designer to be eligible to receive the AAFF Emerging Designer Award:

  • Designer must be accepted to show at NWA Fashion Week
  • Must be based in Arkansas
  • Designer must create and show an original collection (collection must consist of at least 75% originally concepted garments, upcycled or repurposed garments are not eligible)
  • Designer is only eligible to win once per year
  • Only eligible if it is the designer’s first time to show at NWA Fashion Week AND/OR the designer is in their first three years of fashion design for runway.

Recipient of the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum Emerging Designer Award will receive:

  • A gift card for fabric provided to use in the production of a new collection.
  • Automatic acceptance into the following season of NWA Fashion Week.

FASHION INCUBATOR AWARD

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum awards one designer annually with the Fashion Incubator Award during the NWA Fashion Week Fall Shows that take place in Fayetteville.

The following criteria apply in order for a designer to be eligible to receive the AAFF Fashion Incubator Award:

  • Designer must be accepted to show at NWA Fashion Week
  • Must be based in Arkansas
  • Designer must create and show an original collection (collection must consist of at least 75% originally concepted garments, upcycled or repurposed garments are not eligible)
  • Designer is only eligible to win once per year
  • Designer must have shown at one previous NWA Fashion Week

Recipient of the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum Fashion Incubator Award will receive:

  • Fashion editorial produced by NWAFW and Arkansas Fashion Productions.
  • Fashion business and branding consulting package from a local agency professionals working in collaboration with Graphic Design students from the UofA. This package consists of a mentoring and business development program tailored to the specific designer. You will also receive a brand development package including a new logo if desired.