HoL are thankful/grateful to be a part of the mentor panel for the Ladies Wine and Bit of Design event at Colombo Co-orporative. The opportunity to share my industry experience with aspiring women was fulfilling as well as illuminating.
Darshi (Keerthisena) and I met with 10/15 designers at various points in the design journey. Although the designated topic for the session was presenting design portfolios and receiving our feedback, the conversation covered many topics including presentations, work ethic and self-expression. Perhaps the most important thing discussed at the session was the process of crafting a design portfolio that conveyed the spirit and individuality of the designer.
Even though the roles of mentor and mentee were decided, the conversation evolved into a knowledge sharing session amongst the participants. I directed some of my own questions at Darshi and received insightful feedback on combining the design process with the business world.
From designers that had an already operational sewing unit and a successful export order, to designers who were trying to figure out how to translate their passion for miniature model making into design and fashion journalists who spoke passionately and eloquently about fashion, I learnt as just as much as I intended to share.
In a world where women have to work hard to establish a career and then work even harder to make a significant impression, I was inspired to meet individuals that have set out on the difficult journey to combine their passion for art and design with business. To see women take bold steps to achieve their dreams is a wonderful thing. To see organizations bring communities together to embolden them is an even better thing.