Fri 21st Oct 2016

A summary of the first week of the program.

Week 1 was a bundle of nerves and excitement for everyone. The program officially kicked off with an orientation day where the participants got to meet each other for the first time. The room was buzzing with questions on what the next 8 weeks would look like.

Maurice, head of ecosystem development at Mettā Nairobi, began the session with a quick introduction on what Mettā does and why the Fashion Product Lab was integral to its activities.

“Here at Mettā, we try to steer away from being sector-specific. A lot of people believe that we only target the tech ecosystem whereas we strive for so much more than that. We believe that creatives have what it takes to turn their talents into sustainable businesses. This is essentially why the Fashion Product Lab was something we were keen to do. In the past, we have done music roundtables and events that bring together stakeholders from the creative community at large. We’re now turning things up a notch by deep-diving into the world of fashion and bringing in our expertise, entrepreneurship, into the fold.” said Maurice.

The participants received a breakdown of the 8-week curriculum and got to ask burning questions during an insightful round of Q&A. In addition, the cohort came up with a list of norms with which each of them would be held accountable by. They did this activity amongst themselves so as to set standards that were within their capability.

Once introductions were well out of the way, the week progressed with branding workshops curated by Connie Aluoch and Brand2D. Soft skills such as networking and building relationships were also covered during a highly interactive workshop conducted by Yusudi.

By the end of the week, the designers had begun to think through their brands and what stories they would like their collections to tell.

“I applied for the Fashion Product Lab because I had no clue where to start. My business needed structure, direction..this first week makes me feel like everything will come into place.” said Wendy Tsuma of Ayitso Tsuma.

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