A Chapter of University Fashion Week, UofTXFW is a student led movement focused on promoting grassroots designers, community expression, social awareness, and development of entrepreneurship/business skills with a focus on curating emerging talent to get more involved in Canada's emerging fashion industry.
(A) By promoting grassroots designers through the show and producing more entrepreneurs that are interested in shaking up and shaping Canada's fashion landscape. We want to promote the pride, diverse style, creativity, and unique identity of grassroot designers within each campus as well as add to the growing image of Canadian talent and global production.
(B) Through Seminars, Workshop, Discussions we can address contemporary social issues within this industry that's often taboo on commercialized city platforms. Our aim is to create a distinctive community of individuals that are not just passive consumers of fashion, but active, engaged and aware participants in the culture of branded attire.
(C) By being on the planning team we are giving opportunities for students to develop business skills such as leadership, social advocacy, marketing, branding, sponsorship, operation management and much more.
UFW is at its core a grassroots focused initiative meant to empower students in the continued growth and operation of their respective chapters. In accordance with this vision, each chapter of xFW is mandated to allocate ALL proceeds generated from official xFW events at their respective universities towards philanthropy and further empowerment of their university communities. Chapters of xFW have complete autonomy as self-organizing and independent entities, and thus have full control over their governance, activities and all chapter related affairs.
University Fashion Week was founded in 2013 by Kayode Fatoba, a Health Science Alumni from Simon Fraser University. Recipient of the prestigious TD Canada Trust Community Leadership Scholarship, former Vice President of the Simon Fraser Student Society, and most recently the Artistic Director of Vancouver's African Descent Festival. With so much involvement in his university, Kayode saw the vision of building a platform that promotes the participation of students in the Canadian fashion scene.
The initial vision was born through SFU Fashion Week which arose from a need Kayode noticed in his friends in the fashion industry for exposure outside their immediate friends circle. Kayode saw the university ecosystem as the perfect launch pad for the works of up and coming designers, as well as a place they can get validation for their design concepts and creations. He believed the best way to achieve such a goal was in creating an environment that encourages a different type of learning, one that's more practical and saw the confinements of the academic community as having culture, and environment of its own. He envisioned a platform that would work with, and be an integral part of the university by contributing to positive school spirit, engaging dialogue, and helping to promote the university's branded merchandise.
With SFU Fashion Week moving into its fourth year of production and gaining traction within the SFU community and alumni, along with receiving invitations from several UBC students to expand to its campus; Kayode decided to scale SFU Fashion Week into a Canada wide initiative. Thus, coining University Fashion Week as the umbrella project to spread the vision of the flagship event across Canada and get more young Canadians involved in fashion.
Keeping to the tradition of the flagship event, the last week of March has thus been coined as University Fashion Week.
The initiative is funded out of pocket, with sponsorships from local businesses, grants from community groups and tickets all helping to keep the project sustainable and reach it's growing potential.