The business of fashion: local entrepreneurs speak to FSO and CEO



Felicia Guadagni

The Fashion Student Organization teamed up with the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization in an effort to address its entrepreneurial-minded members in a co-hosted event at Rockwell Auditorium Monday night.  This event marks the first time the Fashion Student Organization collaborated with another Kent State University student organization for an event.

Hannah Gates, Fashion Student Organization president, said the event was intended to speak to FSO members that are interested in opening their own boutique or business in the future.

Two local fashion entrepreneurs were featured at the event and spoke on their personal experience in the fashion business. Fadia Nemeh, owner of Mademoiselle in Crocker Park in;Westlake, and Stephanie Fralick, designer and owner of Pinky’s Daily Planner in Tremont, discussed reinvention and adaptation in the fashion industry and gave insight on how they started their own individual businesses.

“The setup and the initial stages of starting a boutique is something a lot of them want to know about, and I think the event was successful in doing that,” said Gates.

The success of the event was echoed on the side of the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization. Cass Lampe, entrepreneurship major and vice president of the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization, said CEO decided to team up with FSO in order to spread the message that entrepreneurship can apply to any major.

“People don’t realize entrepreneurship can incorporate other majors,” said Lampe. “I would say the event was a success for CEO in relaying that message.”

That message resounded with Chabre Potter, fashion design major and FSO member, who did not know fashion and entrepreneurship could work in combination before she came to Kent State University Fashion School, and felt even more informed after listening to the speakers.

Another Fashion Student Organization member, Cydney Critchlow, said she attended the event in hopes of learning more about business in fashion considering her fashion merchandising major.

“FSO is what you make of it—fashion design students take away more about design, merchandising students take away more about merchandising—but entrepreneurship is not really discussed,” said Critchlow. “I think it is important to learn about entrepreneurship, especially for fashion merchandising majors.”

Felicia Guadagni is the fashion reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].