Threading the Needle: The Future of Fashion Design Conference


New York, NY:  October 27, 2009 Threading the Needle: The Future of Fashion Design Conference

Fashion Research Institute  invites you to attend Threading the Needle: The Future of Fashion Design, the first virtual world-based fashion design conference in history.

Fashion design is changing rapidly in response to many factors. The recent economic collapse, coupled with a coming petroleum crisis and a wave of new technologies with a global emphasis have sent ripples through the industry.  Young designers and design students are faced with an array of choices for their careers, many of which weren’t even an option a few years ago.

Threading the Needle gathers eight fashion industry thought leaders to present their views on a range of topics designed to help a global audience of new designers and fashion designers ‘thread their needle’ and launch their careers.  And as anyone who has ever had hand sewn a hem knows, there is a trick to threading a needle.  Please join us on Thursday, December 3rd from 8 am – 5 pm EDT at this free conference for fashion design students and new designers.

Conference speakers include Kerry Bannigan (CEO, Nolcha Fashion Week); Fiona Jenvey (CEO, Mudpie); Beth Harris (Director of Digital Learning, MOMA-NYC); Crosby Noricks (Founder, PR Couture); Suzie Norris-Reeves (FHEA, Head of School, Southampton Solent University); Elaine Polvinen (Professor & Coordinator – Fashion Textile Technology, Buffalo State University); Michiel Thissen  (Founder, Mythos Consultancy); Shenlei Winkler (CEO, Fashion Research Institute); Steven Zucker (Dean of Graduate Studies, FIT).

In addition to the presentation track, additional displays will be available for conference attendees to visit.  These include a 3-D trend report, with trend data graciously provided by Mudpie; a virtual fashion installation with fashions created by the Fashion Research Institute’s student interns; booths and displays about programs from other fashion industry organizations; exhibits about fashion history, and even a game developed just for fashion designers!

The trendy conference architecture is being provided by The ARCH Techwork. and hosting and hardware for the event are being graciously provided by Intel Corporation with additional support from Intel Labs.  Threading the Needle is a HASTACA event. The conference is being presented and sponsored by Fashion Research Institute.

The conference is free for all attendees – simply create a user account on the ScienceSim grid at Then download the software, and log in. It’s that simple, and both the software and the conference are free.  Attendees will want to log in a little early and customize their avatars, so they feel comfortable with their avatar representation and with the interface.  There are 45 minute orientation sessions which will be provided on November 19th and 26th from 1-2 pm EDT, and November 29 from 9-10 am EDT.  Experienced mentors will be on hand to guide you through the orientation, which takes about 30 minutes, with 15 minutes to customize your avatar.

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