The British Fashion Council (BFC) has today unveiled a database of high-end manufacturers based in Britain to help designers form relationships with suppliers in this country. The British High-End Manufacturers Database is the first milestone of 2017 for the BFC’s Positive Fashion initiative.
The need for such a database was highlighted in the High-End and Designer Manufacturing Report created in 2015 by the BFC and a working group comprising M&S, UKFT, Creative Skillset, The Alliance Project and Centre for Fashion Enterprise and independent specialists.
Glasgow Caledonian University and Oxford University set about researching the free-to-view database, which sits on the BFC’s Designer Fact File platform, a designer business learning platform providing insights and training across a wide spectrum of topics.
The topics covered are tailored to a range of business stages, from start-ups to established brands, and content is provided by leading industry professionals. In stage one, the initial manufacturers recommended for inclusion in the database were sourced through designer recommendations, as well as through research done for the High-End and Designer Manufacturing Report.
Moving forward in stage two, the BFC will conduct a full audit of all manufacturers listed and the database will grow organically as designers and BFC partners recommend further manufacturers, and as suppliers come forward to submit themselves for listing.
Throughout this year the BFC will be looking to celebrate the “Positive Fashion” initiative, for which it has been partnered by M&S, to encourage designer businesses to prioritise sustainability and ethical practices. The three key focuses for Positive Fashion in 2017 are Sustainability, Diversity & Industry Education (including model health) and Local Manufacturing and Craftsmanship.
Image: Professor Christopher Moore of Glasgow Caledonian University and BFC CEO Caroline Rush CBE