Fashion & Beauty

Chicago Fashion Incubator

Chicago Fashion Incubator Welcomes 2019 Class of Designers

A photo of the Chicago Fashion Incubator designers

The Chicago Fashion Incubator’s 2019 designers (from left): Barbara Keisman, Cara Farella, Goli Parvinian, Kpoene’ Kofi-Nicklin and Rakan Shams Aldeen (not pictured: Adilah Muhammad)

The Chicago Fashion Incubator, a two year-long residency on the business of fashion, welcomes the most diverse class in its 10-year history.

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, UNITED STATES, April 26, 2019 / — The Chicago Fashion Incubator at Macy’s on State Street (CFI), a two-year residency focused on the business of fashion, welcomes three new designers-in-residence for the 2019 year. These designers join three continuing designers-in-residence to receive mentoring and training to take their independent fashion businesses to the next level.

The CFI workroom welcomes Barbara Keisman, Kpoene Kofi-Nicklin and Goli Parvinian, as they join Rakan Shams Aldeen and Cara Farella, who began the CFI program in 2018, as well as Adilah Muhammad, who returns for a third year after beginning with CFI in 2017. Brief descriptions of these talented designers are listed below.

The CFI provides emerging Chicago-based designers with resources, including work space, mentoring and workshops, to help grow their careers in fashion. Workshops range in topics from media training, creating business plans, cost analysis, and building a brand strategy to more artistic sessions like preparing patterns for production to color and proportion theory. Throughout the two-year program, the designers have the chance to establish relationships with a network of industry professionals including lawyers, accountants, fashion buyers, merchandisers and branding, marketing and communications experts.

“In the 10 years since CFI was founded, this is the most diverse class we’ve had – diversity of race, religion, country of origin as well as of design background and business expertise. This diversity will truly help to enrich the experience for all of the designers as they are able to learn, grow and collaborate, unified by their shared passion for the art and business of fashion,” said Andrea Schwartz, CFI Board President. “CFI’s past designers have been successful in building their careers, and we expect the same from this talented class.”

2019 Designers-in-Residence:
Barbara Keisman of Feel Good Fashions
Barbara Keisman got her start in fashion as a professional model and then a fashion photographer. After stepping away from the industry for many years to raise her children, in 2011 she started her own brand Feel Good Fashions, a figure-flattering, affordable fashion line made entirely in the United States. Feel Good Fashions’ name was inspired by two things: its comfort-forward style and the company’s commitment to donating 10% of profits to disaster relief efforts and female empowerment organizations in developing countries

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