The Fashion Pipeline

Fashion Advancement

Over the past 5+ years, the Dayton Emerging Fashion Incubator (DE-FI) LLC has been one of the most influential fashion organizations in the country. From our unique sold out events, to our mentoring of models, and supplying the tools for our designers to build their brand.  We’ve paved the way for our peer organizations to re-think and re-imagine #TheFashionExperience.

Realizing the significant impact fashion has on the local economy from sewing lessons, to pop-up shops, boutiques, and fashion shows; we have envisioned fashion as a driver for job creation, cultural growth, trade development, and tourism.  Building on Dayton's long manufacturing heritage the idea of fashion advancement is to have a place that used the resources and opportunities available in the Gem City to help aspiring local fashion designers build sustainable businesses that can compete in the global fashion industry.

The mission of the Dayton Emerging Fashion Incubator (DE-FI) LLC, The Dayton Garment and Textile District, Gem City Sewing Company, and Dayton Threads is to make meaningful economic impact in Dayton by giving fashion designers technical product development and business tools and training to create innovative products and launch globally competitive businesses based in Dayton.

Our goal is to acquire a space large enough to house our subsidiaries. The space will be comprised of a manufacturing workroom equipped, cutting tables, sewing machines, and pressing stations where sewist will produce designer’s lines and sample collections.  This will be a makerspace, bringing the community together — cutting across ethnicity, race, class, gender, geography and age — to explore new creative possibilities.

This space will also serve as a resource center that provides other independent apparel and accessories designers with educational tools, research assets, and programming to help further their fashion business growth and development.

Our #FashionAdvancement program will take the designer beyond just doing another show, we will provide them with essential tools to aid them in their development as both creative artists and successful business owners. Additionally, plan to support an internship program in partnership with leading fashion schools in Ohio and also to host professional business and merchandising seminars and workshops for emerging fashion entrepreneurs, in addition to other public programming to promote and encourage design education and foster public appreciation for all aspects of fashion, design, and history. 

Dayton's Design & Fashion Week

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Our Subsidiaries

Gem City Sewing Company


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Dayton Garment & Textile District


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Dayton Threads


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Dayton Design Week


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Dayton Fashion Week


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