In Conversation: Denise Incandela

On September 22nd at 1:00 PM CDT the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum team will be hosting a virtual discussion with visionary retail executive Denise Incandela. Denise will provide her insight on how the fashion industry has changed over the past 20 years and where she sees it heading in the future. Attendees will also hear her insight into how COVID-19 has impacted the fashion industry.

Incandela will share how she began her career in fashion and offer suggestions to creatives on how to sustain creative endeavors during this time.This will be a discussion full of expert information on the industry that you don’t want to miss! Incandela has been featured in:

“50 List”, Glamour “Women of the Year”, Brand Innovator’s “Top 50 Women in Brand Marketing”, Direct Marketing News’ “Marketing Hall of Femme”, Luxury Daily’s “Luxury Women to Watch”, and Retail Online Integration’s “Top Women in Cross-Channel Retail”. Denise has also been featured in a number of leadership books including “How Remarkable Women Lead” and “The Next Generation of Women Leaders”.

RSVP via this link: https://bit.ly/3lmSTRf

In Conversation: Brittany Allen

Join the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum team on September 23rd at 5:30 PM CST for a virtual discussion with fashion designer and previous Project Runway contestant, Brittany Allen. The AAFF team will discuss Brittany’s career, inspirations, and her experience on and after the hit T.V. show Project Runway. AAFF will also be taking a trip back down memory lane and talk to Brittany about her experience participating in Northwest Arkansas Fashion Week.

“Brittany Allen grew up in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and strives for perfection and excellence in her unique designs. After receiving her Bachelor of Science from the University of Arkansas and her MFA from SCAD, she moved to Austin, Texas, where she is currently an adjunct professor of fashion courses at a local university. She works on her brand full time, and is simultaneously in the final stages of her PhD in Apparel, Merchandising, and Design at Iowa State. Brittany’s designs mix powerful shapes with feminine prints, and she incorporates French seams throughout every garment to add couture refinement, and emphasize her formal training and techniques. Brittany’s goal as a designer is to bring fun and excitement back into the fashion industry, and her designs are meant to make women feel more empowered and beautiful. She describes her brand as if Dolly Parton and Betsey Johnson had a baby who was then raised by Anna Wintour. Her designs have been showcased at Austin Fashion Week 2017-2019, 2017 Houston Fashion Week, and September 2019 Style Fashion Week, along with WWD and Footwear News.”

RSVP via this link: https://rb.gy/dx2pfk

In Conversation: Brittany Allen

On October 14th at 6:00 PM join Fashion Designer Korto Momolu and University of Arkansas Professor Constance Bailey as they have an in-depth virtual conversation regarding symbolism in Beyonce’s Black Is King. The panelists will unpack the film’s fashion, themes, timely relevance, and the use of spiritual and cultural references that are used throughout the African diaspora. 

Dr. Constance Bailey will use her expertise in Black Feminism and Womanist studies, as well as her course curriculum to bring important dialogue to the discussion regarding black love, black women’s coming of age experiences (black girl magic), family relationships and work. Korto Momolu who is a Liberian-born fashion designer and stylist will be able to speak to African iconography that is used throughout the film as well as the impact that fashion plays regarding storytelling throughout Black communities.If you have any questions that you would like to submit, we invite you to bring them to the discussion or email them ahead of time to rachel@arkansasfashion.org.

RSVP Via this link: https://bit.ly/3mqouSt

In Conversation: Caitlin Draper Mattelin, Stress & Uncertainty

Join Caitlin Draper Mattelin and the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum on Monday, August 24th at 6:30 pm. Caitlin will be discussing tools to cope with uncertainty and stress during COVID-19, including radical acceptance.

As COVID-19 has continued for months on end, the prolonged stress can leave us feeling constantly overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. It is common to feel depressed and anxious while trying to support ourselves, our families, and friends while social distancing and when dealing with issues outside of our control for such prolonged lengths of time.

Carve out some time for yourself this month and attend this meeting to obtain those much-needed tools to make your life a little less stressful during this time. RSVP via this link: https://bit.ly/2CrKb2m

Keeping up with COVID: Mitigation Strategies with Dr. Osborne

On Thursday, August 27th, 2020 at 5:30 PM Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum will be hosting a live video discussion with Dr. Cara Osborne regarding risk mitigation for COVID-19 and what individuals and families can do to keep safe as numbers continue to rise.

Dr. Osborne will provide situational analysis regarding the severity of certain settings and then provide you with details and facts that can minimize your chance of exposure in each setting. She will touch on topics such as mask fatigue, goggle and face shield usage, navigating family gatherings during this crisis, and building consent before gathering together.

In this discussion, Dr. Osborne will have the opportunity to discuss certain myths pertaining to the virus as well as provide you with factual information that can help you determine if dining at that specific restaurant you’ve been missing is worth it, or should you stay in and opt for takeout instead.

If you have any questions regarding COVID risk mitigation we invite you to bring them to the discussion or email them ahead of time to rachel@arkansasfashion.org.

Feel free to take notes and we can’t wait to see you there!

RSVP via this link: https://bit.ly/2Q67Jxb

In Conversation: Modeling During a Pandemic

On Thursday, August 13th, Kathleen Gonzalez (Northwest Arkansas Fashion Week’s Director of Modeling and a new Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum Board member), will be moderating a conversation with:

-Renée Mittelstaedt (Founder of The Pivot NY)
-Elizabeth Peyton-Jones (Founder of Responsible Trust For Models)
-Dr. Sundran Rajendra (Director of Research for the Responsible Trust for Models).

The panel will discuss ways in which models can develop their craft and reach their career goals during COVID-19. The panel will also address important COVID-19 guidelines for models and discuss ways that they can ensure their own safety and health during this pandemic. Sign up for the event here: https://bit.ly/2DSmbpk

In Conversation: Judith Yanez, Culturally Responsive Education


This will be a discussion on creating culturally responsive programming through non-profit management strategies and adaptation to current crises in education.

To learn more about Judith and the organization RootED visit the Facebook event here: shorturl.at/abhLP

A question to ask yourself..”How do we get more parents involved in their child’s education?” On Wednesday, August 5th at 5:30 PM find out by joining Judith A. Yáñez and our CEO, Robin Atkinson, as they begin the discussion on being culturally responsive to the needs of families in Northwest Arkansas.

Judith A. Yáñez, MAT is an advocate for culturally responsive spaces that strengthen parent voices in Northwest Arkansas and nationally. She graduated from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville with a degree in mathematics and a Master of Arts in Teaching. She is currently the Founding Executive Director at RootED Northwest Arkansas, National Parent Union Council Member and the first Latina elected official in Northwest Arkansas, serving as a Justice of the Peace for Washington County District #4.

In Conversation: Kerin Rose Gold

Join the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum and designer of iconic custom eyewear and accessories, Kerin Rose Gold on Wednesday, July 29th at 5:30 PM! Kerin has designed custom pieces for artists such as Rihanna, Lady Gaga, and the Queen herself, Beyonce ♥. We recommend that you check out the trailer for Beyonce’s newest project “Black Is King” to see Kerin’s designs in motion!

In this conversation, we will learn what Kerin has been up to lately, what it’s like trying to survive as an artist in NY during this pandemic, and what it’s like making pieces for celebrities like Beyonce! This will be a conversation that you won’t want to miss! If you’d like to learn a little bit about Kerin and her eyewear line before the interview, check out her bio below!

RSVP via our the Facebook event page here: shorturl.at/ftuA9

In Conversation: Lisa Corrigan on White Femininity

In Conversation: Dr. Lisa Corrigan
White Femininity: Anxiety, Perfectionism, and Justice

RSVP via our the Facebook event page here: shorturl.at/fgkAB

On Monday, July 27th, 2020 at 5:30 pm Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum will be hosting a live video question and answer session with Dr. Lisa Corrigan following up on our previous discussions on allyship during the Black Lives Matter movement.

The video from our first session Ally Etiquette 101 is available here: https://youtu.be/Z1-B7ctm4vc

Please bring or submit questions in the discussion on this event page.

This conversation will be held in what we at Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum have begun to call a Brave Space during our previous Conversations for Change co-hosted with Elxr Yoga Lounge. A Brave Space is a space that encourages dialogue where you may feel uncomfortable because you will be held accountable for past experiences and new understandings- we believe this discomfort is what leads to individual growth that will change the community for the better.

Dr. Lisa M. Corrigan is a Professor of Communication, Director of the Gender Studies Program, and Affiliate Faculty in both African & African American Studies and Latin American Studies in the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas. She is a feminist rhetorical scholar who researches and teaches in the areas of social movement studies, the Black Power and civil rights movement, prison studies, feminist studies, the Cold War, and the history of public address.

In this conversation, we will be covering topics such as the history of white femininity, how white femininity is shaped by and shapes patriarchy, and how white femininity can consciously and unconsciously harm others.

Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/94697300312

Anti Racism Resource Group ?

To Join this Facebook group click here: shorturl.at/gixTV

Anti-Racism Resource Group is a communal space built in the model of group recovery programs that allow for anonymity, solidarity, and understanding. We will focus on unlearning our oppressive system of beliefs and learning to live with the knowledge of our White privilege in an effort to use it against systemic discrimination and further anti-racist practices. This group meets weekly and features a 12 step program where group members are introduced to a new step each week!

Good Book Club!

To join this Facebook group click the link here: shorturl.at/bltS8

Say hello to the Good Book Club!
Good Stuff 4 Good People has partnered with us to bring you a space where people can read a curated selection of books that will help our community work towards becoming better allies and reach farther levels of understanding .?

This book club is sustainable and supports local businesses. We highly recommend checking your local library for our book selections or shopping at Black-Owned Bookstores.
Good Stuff is a grassroots charity organization ran by two Northwest Arkansas community members!
This group has two virtual meetings each month to discuss the book that is assigned for that month.