DREAM TEAM: From left, Clarke, Wyndham's Christina Taylor, ATL's Judith Denton and Slovak at Thursday's launch.
Stylist extraordinaire and self-professed fashion devotee Kerry-Ann Clarke is in the business of nurturing homegrown talent. So naturally, she’s made it her mission to help up-and-coming design stars navigate the predicaments that can befall anyone who dares to dream big. Enter The Collections.
“I love fashion and everything related to lifestyle and fashion, and I’m always discovering, for some reason, emerging talent,” explains Clarke, proprietor of the well-known Kerrymanwomanhome. “And working closely with them, you realize that there is no platform to take the next step to ensure that the collection gets bigger and better. So there is a problem with distribution, manufacturing and a host of other problems. And that’s how The Collections was born.”
Speaking with TALLAWAH following an intimate press launch recently at the Wyndham Kingston, Clarke notes that the upcoming event has its emphasis on getting the participating designers to connect with potential buyers, which, of course, is supremely important. “It’s not only a fashion show for entertainment, hence the invitation-only aspect,” explains Clarke, who has got the backing of sponsors like ATL Automotive. “Because what we are trying to do is reach a target audience, and in that target audience there are, specifically, buyers and the kind of persons the designer is trying to reach.”
Attendees at the June 14 runway shows can expect to see pieces from Lubica Slovak’s summer collection, as well the latest from Dexter Huxtable from Spokes. And, Clarke adds, “we’re flying in an international swimwear designer out of Florida, Red Carter, who was just bought by a big company.”
The timing, Clarke tells me, is just right. “It’s right after CFW, and I thought it would be nice because I don’t look at it as competition in a negative way. It’s just great that you have Style Week, then CFW, and then another event. I mean, why do it next month? The buzz is already in the city for fashion.”
As for the future, Clarke indicates that The Collections will be a calendar event, with plans for it to evolve into something truly mega-sized. “It will be annual event, absolutely. And we definitely have some plans,” she says. “But I prefer not to speak about those yet because it’s not happening for this year.”