June 6, 2016
Historically, the city of Columbus has rarely been credited for its hand within the fashion industry, as people often overlook the contributions, opportunities and brands the capital has provided for the arts, especially within the last three-to-five years.
During this time, Columbus has made immense strides to become more aesthetically and stylistically present within the culture. The city has become the epicenter for current and inspiring fashion designers to locate, as well as one that integrates the artistic influence of others outside the city to create its own distinct “look.”
The Short North Arts District is home to some of the most illustrious stores and boutiques in the country. Stores like MADE & Co., Rowe Boutique, and Happy Go Lucky have become local favorites, and have since expanded beyond Columbus’ fashion scene. Nationally recognized franchises like Homage, American Apparel, and Plato’s Closet have made their way into the district, establishing their global influences with the city’s own.
The development of large clothing warehouses has also made a significant impact onto the city. They have prompted the distribution of corner-stone fashion labels and designers to substantiate their presence in Columbus. USA Today magazine writer Lisa Davis details how these brands have established themselves as a result of the construction of these warehouses.
Davis says, “Clothing retail giants like The Limited, Abercrombie & Fitch, Express and Victoria’s Secret have headquarters here, and a young, entrepreneurial vibe has brought new life to this section of flyover country.”
In turn, the development of these warehouses has produced several positions for aspiring designers and helped integrate the stylistic distinctions of other major fashion capitals into shopping centers like Easton Town Center, Tuttle and Polaris Mall. Ultimately, giving Columbus a more diverse scope of the fashion world.
Columbus has become a city that has embraced individuals’ creativity and entrepreneurship, which has inspired designers to gravitate toward this community. These ideas ultimately started the first Columbus Fashion Week back in 2010, which has now grown to become a prevalent event within the city. Additionally, these ideas have helped Columbus become one of the largest designer per-capita cities in the country, and a culture that’s making its way into the upper echelon of fashion capitals in the world.