Saint Louis Fashion Week was founded in 2006 with a mission of creating a platform for national designers to reach their Midwest customers and local fashion designers to launch their careers. The carefully curated event series is the largest of its kind in the Midwest, providing designers with valuable resources and connections, which assist in the growth of their careers. The Saint Louis Fashion Week runway has showcased designers such as Rebecca Taylor, Tess Giberson, Rachel Pally, Black Halo and Eva Franco, increasing awareness and demand for these brands in the Midwest region. Each year, Saint Louis Fashion Week reaches more than 10,000 attendees and raises more than $10,000 for local charities.
Saint Louis Fashion Fund is a new organization, led by a 25-member Board of Directors, which includes leaders in culture, fashion, higher education, law and business. The Fund will play an integral role in the development and growth of the Saint Louis fashion community. In addition to supporting the activities of Saint Louis Fashion Week, now in its 11th season, the entity will fund educational programming and outreach to support the next generation of designers. In 2014, STLFF will award one designer $15,000 to help him/her take his/her business to the next level. STLFF hosts its inaugural Gala this year with the goal of raising seed funding to create the St. Louis Fashion Incubator housed in the former Garment District, which will open in late 2016.