Ann-Marie Vaz signs on as patron to Design A Dress competition
Philanthropist Ann-Marie Vaz has signed on as a patron for the Design A Dress competition, which kicked off on November 14.
Vaz, a stanch supporter of brand Jamaica, said: “Everyone knows that when it comes to fashion that my preference is always to be dressed by a Jamaican designer. To be given the opportunity to provide guidance and support for them is a truly an honor for me. I want to challenge them to see this as a real business opportunity that could potentially change their lives forever.”
The Design A Dress initiative was launched in 2015 by award-winning destination wedding planner Helen Graham and saw over 15 young designers, many new to the design market, enter the competition. They were given four weeks to design a beach-themed wedding dress with the winner walking away with $100,000 cash prize and a photo spread in the Flair magazine.
This year, the organisers of the event wanted to do more, according to Paula Pinnock, Managing Director for FYI Consultancy Group.
“We wanted to create a competition that would encourage brides to have a choice to buy Jamaican and we also wanted to ensure that the Design A Dress competition provided a truly viable option for our young designers. We wanted to partner with someone that believed in brand Jamaica, that supported the local design industry and gave young designers a voice, there is no one better that we could think of than AnnMarie Vaz to mentor these young designers," she said.
This year's competition gives hopefuls eight weeks to design, sew and submit there dresses for the 2017 competition. Designers are challenged to create a Tropical-themed wedding dress for a cash prize of $100,000 as well as other prizes including the mentorship program.
Having a Patron onboard allows the organisers to invest in the long term success of these individuals entering the competition and ensuring that they get the necessary support needed to launch a viable career. Finalists in the Design A Dress competition will participate in the Helen G Bridal Fashion Show on January 29th, at the Spanish Court Hotel Worthington.
FEATURED PHOTO: Ann-Marie Vaz