ATLANTA – The Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with RAGTRADE Atlanta, announced today their new initiative to support American fashion designers based in the City of Atlanta. The Atlanta Emerging Fashion Designer Award will grant five (5) fashion designers $1,500 each to assist with building their businesses as emerging designers in Atlanta.

As fashion remains one of the most difficult industries to break into, more industry professionals are coming to the City of Atlanta to launch their careers. Atlanta offers four accredited fashion degree programs, textile manufacturing resources, the largest wholesale marketplace in the Southeast, an international airport, low cost living, as well as an established entertainment industry. All of this and more positions Atlanta as the next hub for emerging fashion designers.

“We believe that this grant program will not only benefit in the growth of our fashion community, but the city as well,” said Camille Russell Love, executive director of the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs. “Like other cities, the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs recognizes the importance of creative industries. We are excited to expand our Emerging Artist Award in partnership with RAGTRADE Atlanta as we recognize that fashion design is an important creative industry for the City of Atlanta.”

Grant recipients will be selected by a committee of industry experts from Atlanta’s fashion community. Submissions will be evaluated based on the talent demonstrated through the criteria of the application and the candidate’s capacity for future distinction.

Applicants will be evaluated on the following attributes:

  • Creativity and innovation
  • Unique design aesthetic
  • Workmanship
  • Industry references
  • Evaluation of photos of collection
  • Benefits for the community
  • Career plan

Phase one of the application process will begin May 6, 2015, and will run through June 5, 2015, at 5:00 p.m. EST. The top ten applicants will be selected for phase two and will be required to participate in a short interview with the panel. The final five recipients of the Atlanta Emerging Fashion Designer Award will be selected by August 1, 2015, and will be notified by official letter.

For more information including access and guidelines to applications, please visit the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs website at

About The City of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs
The City of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs’ vision is to enhance the quality of life through arts and culture, and to contribute positively to the social and economic health of Atlanta and the region. Their mission is to promote rich, diverse and educational cultural experiences; nurture artists and arts organizations; unify Atlanta’s cultural community; preserve and protect the city’s cultural heritage; and expand Atlanta’s international reputation as a cultural destination. For news and information follow them on Facebook and visit their web site at

About RAGTRADE Atlanta
RAGTRADE Atlanta was created by a group of industry professionals who are passionate about creating a vibrant and globally recognized fashion industry for the City of Atlanta.

RAGTRADE Atlanta not only provides emerging designers with a platform to showcase their talent through a premier runway show, but also provides them with needed resources through partnerships, industry collaboration, events and education. For news and information, follow RAGTRADE Atlanta on Facebook and visit their website at