GROUPE started with a question. How do we foster and support the voice and vision of emerging designers?
The traditional model for the fashion industry is broken, with no real support for its emerging artists. Young talent spend their most unjaded creative years in support roles making tech packs. Imagine telling Adele that she would have to sing backup for 15 years. There simply aren’t opportunities for new designers to have a credible chance at independence unless they have both business acumen and access to significant capital. If we are going to change the narrative, we need to rethink the power structures and roadblocks that exist today in the fashion industry.
Why? The industry is at a crossroads. Online retailing initially eliminated overhead for emerging designers, but it also created an insatiable and constant demand for newness, while stripping out the intimate experience of fashion as a personal and physical journey. Large retailers have more deliveries than calendar months in a year, and garments are no longer built to last. Additionally, larger fast-fashion brands have skewed public perceptions of how much a garment should cost by flooding the market with low-quality, cheaply-produced goods that pale in comparison to the designer trends they imitate.
That is why we created GROUPE. To change the narrative, and to flip the model on its head. We are creating the first genuine and sustainable platform that connects independent, emerging and aspiring designers to a community of early-adopters who are looking for more meaning in the things they wear.
GROUPE selects emerging designers who create capsule collections or launch new brands with us. We provide the funding for samples and production, as well as the marketing and distribution. GROUPE leverages 18 years of experience and infrastructure as well as the closely-connected clientele and support network of the SEIZE SUR VINGT luxury menswear brand. GROUPE will launch with a concept store on the hotly trending Bowery in downtown NYC, plus a web platform to sell collections directly. The physical space will be a dynamic and engaging venue to test-market samples and new concepts—a fashion petri dish.
We are a collective of young designers who will shape the fashion dialogue. We are an incubator that supports the growth of today's most exciting talent. And we are a curator of design -- offering our clients the chance to become fashion patrons and support emerging talent. Together, let’s redefine the future of design.