The State of Fashion in Atlanta Through My Eyes As An Atlanta Transplant

It has been recently brought to my attention that Atlanta is lacking in something. Now natives of the popular city could argue that Atlanta has it all. Night life, food, music, and some diverse individuals. But one key component that’s missing is fashion.

In a recent article on WABE “The State Of Atlanta’s Fashion Scene , As Told By Its Designers” writer Caroline Cox recognized the need of support for our local designers. Designers are having to shop and manufacture out of state, international, and online just to find quality. And while lack of support and resources is a prevalent issue, a more personal issue that was stated in the article was mentorship.

When I first moved to Atlanta in 2017 I was on a mission. That mission was clear as day; find an internship and a mentor in the fashion industry. Although the mission was clear, the task was tedious. I never once assumed that it would be close to impossible. Coming from a small city I thought Atlanta had endless possibilities especially in the fashion industry. That was all disguised by the luxury shops and labeled pedestrians.

While more grants for designers would be helpful, she says the real gap is with lack of mentorship. “Frankly, a lot of us rise and fall on what you don’t know and can’t see.”-Charlene Dunbar (creator of Suakoko Betty fashion line)

It took me a year of networking, going to events, and staying positive to finally land an internship. To this day I am very thankful for the opportunities that my mentor, Angela Watts of 10 Squared and RAGTRADE ATLANTA rewarded me but we need more . We need more outlets and community events where we can share ideas and network. We need more funding so fashion designers don’t have to outsource or fund their own fashion lines. And we need more mentors willing to help the next generation break the mold.

Click here to read : The State of Atlanta’s Fashion Scene, As Told by Its Designers by Charlene Cox

Image Credit: Tonya Wise/ Picture Group

Haley Austin