There has been sporadic talk over the years of starting some type of unifying organization for the Portland design scene—the Fashion Incubator is long gone, but the Fashion Fight Club and clothes online is a recent example of designers banding together for strength in numbers. May Tee, a Portland-based designer, has ambitions on a new organization, the first project of which is underway: Portland Fashion Synergy has already begun a design contest and scholarship program available to Portland Art Institute students themed in this inaugural year as NEXT. As in (partly), what's next for Portland design students after they graduate? One of the goals of PDXFS is too strengthen relationships across the community, and allow young designers the opportunity of exploring some of the alternatives to leaving town or finding a job at a sportswear company. This could take any number of forms: It's all brand new, and Tee is still in the brainstorming stages (full disclosure: I've been trying to help her). If you're a local designer or design student, check it out. It's an opportunity to get on the ground floor and make out of it what you would most want to get out if it; the door is wide open.
A look from May Tee's S/S '09 collection—find pieces for fall on sale now at Marios.
Get the best of the Mercury each week in your inbox!