Anna Olejnicki, who pioneered the network, said: “The vision is to create a network of students, designers, illustrators, pattern cutters, photographers, stylists, high street stores and independent retailers and bring them together through a series activities throughout the year that celebrate and promote the talent this sector has here in Sheffield.
“I have always worked in fashion show production and styling, so I guess you could say I love the drama and storytelling fashion and clothing can bring.”
Anna, who is also the artistic director of Hype Dance Company, was keen to promote local brands.
She said: “I am a huge advocate for independent retailers and I think Sheffield has certainly turned a corner in the food and drink market and I’m convinced we will see fashion and retail gain support and grow.
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“There are great stores doing great things and we must support them more.
“Independent fashion retailers really work hard to fully understand their customers. I think they have a special bond with regular customers. Independent stores simply offer a difference in stock and also a difference in the shopping experience.”
Anna hopes this will be the first of many events.
She said: “I’m planning more fashion shows, met the maker evenings, talks, discussions, workshops, and I certainly will lobby for a Sheffield Fashion Week at some point.
“My dream is for the network is that it will snowball, and anyone and everyone is welcome to be part of future events.”
On the night, four of Anna’s students from Hype Dance Academy will model the clothes, and make-up artists and hair stylists will work voluntarily.
The launch event is a chance for independent retailers to meet each other and make professional connections, and will also provide a platform for admiring local fashion.
Every fashion lover and independent business owner is welcome to attend the event, which will be at OHM in the city centre from on Thursday, April 25.
Anna said: “It’s a free event, so nothing ventured nothing gained, but if you come you’ll have been part of the launch of the best network for fashion in Yorkshire. Just turn up from 6:30pm to 11pm and join in the fun.
“I’d like to thank everyone who has helped me with the launch, and especially OHM Sheffield for agreeing to host the event.”