Danish Fashion Institute (DAFI) is a network organization established by the Danish fashion industry in 2005. The purpose of DAFI is to facilitate an extensive network to develop, promote, market and push Danish fashion forward in order to strengthen Denmark’s position on the global fashion map. The stronger Danish fashion stands abroad and the more international attention it attracts, the better we ensure the development of a stronger and more competitive fashion industry in Denmark.
DAFI’s work is based on a vision of gathering the industry, strengthening Copenhagen Fashion Week, putting Danish fashion on the national political agenda, strengthening communication between the industry and relevant educational institutions, generating and sharing new industry knowledge and facilitating networking.
At present, Danish Fashion Institute consists of 135 member companies from the fashion industry ranging from the biggest and most established companies to the new generation of fashion labels.
As both a networking organization and a member organization, DAFI works in part with large, visionary, and agenda-setting initiatives that benefit the whole industry, but also with more concrete and value-generating projects for the members, to the benefit of individual companies.
Copenhagen Fashion Week Since its founding in 2005, Danish Fashion Institute has been in charge of organising one of Denmark’s biggest international events; the biannual Copenhagen Fashion Week. Prior to 2005, the Danish capital’s fashion week was primarily an event for trade fairs and sales, but since then the umbrella project Copenhagen Fashion Week has developed into a true cultural happening with fashion shows, events, and activities, that has spread across the whole city and involves not only fashion professionals but also city residents and tourists.
Copenhagen Fashion Week was established by Danish Fashion Institute with the aim of building a genuine “Fashion Week” with runway shows, events, and PR-activities on top of the trade fair-centred “Market Week” in Copenhagen. To begin with, Copenhagen Fashion Week was the biggest project of DAFI, but soon grew so large that it was separated into a subsidiary.
Copenhagen Fashion Week ApS works as an umbrella organization with the purpose of gathering, supporting, and facilitating shows, events, and other activities during fashion week, while marketing and communicating these through a range of media and platforms. At the same time, it is the task of Copenhagen Fashion Week to offer a range of services to continuously raise standards and accessibility to events for professionals. Besides this, it is Copenhagen Fashion Week’s purpose to market Copenhagen internationally as an important fashion destination and attract exciting design companies, buyers, and media to town – positioning Copenhagen Fashion Week as the Fashion Capital of Scandinavia. Copenhagen Fashion Week is also behind Copenhagen Fashion Festival.
In 2008, DAFI initiated the NICE project (Nordic Initiative Clean and Ethical), in collaboration with our Nordic sister organizations, collectively Nordic Fashion Association. NICE’s purpose is to assist and motivate fashion companies to integrate sustainability and social responsibility in their business practices and processes and thereby create value for society. Since 2009, NICE has organised the highly renowned international summit Copenhagen Fashion Summit, held every other year to gather industry professionals, politicians, experts and NGO’s from across the globe to discuss visions and challenges for a sustainable fashion industry.
NICE – Nordic Initiative Clean & Ethical – is a pan-Nordic project whose primary purpose is to motivate and support fashion companies in integrating practices of sustainability and social responsibility in their businesses to the benefit of people, the environment, and profits.
In 2010, DAFI launched the fashion industry’s news site Fashionforum.dk – a project that emerged from Modezonen (read more below). Fashionforum.dk delivers daily news on the Danish fashion industry and contains Denmark’s biggest job portal specifically targeting the fashion industry.
FashionForum is the Danish fashion industry’s news portal with features, news, background articles, and job ads – updated every day.
FashionForum.dk was launched with the aim of creating a virtual platform and place of gathering for the Danish fashion industry. In terms of both page-views and a brimming job ad platform, FashionForum soon proved to fill a demand within the industry. However, as DAFI had only raised funds for FashionForum for the limited duration of the Modezonen project, so when time was running out in the fall of 2011, much was at stake.
Neither DAFI nor the industry at large were ready to bid farewell to FashionForum and all the knowledge, experience, and capacity the project had generated through its two years. In literally the last moment, FashionForum and its readers could heave a sigh of relief. With support from a number of the industry’s strongest actors, the funding was partly secured, letting FashionForum continue delivering fresh news and jobs to and from the fashion industry.
From 2008-2011, DAFI ran the three-year political industry initiative Modezonen in collaboration with Kolding School of Design, The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts – School of Design, KEA, Danish Design Centre, TEKO, The Danish Chamber of Commerce, Dansk Fashion and Textile, The Trade Council of Denmark, Wonderful Copenhagen, and the Capital Region of Denmark. Modezonen aimed to ensure and advance opportunities for combining creativity, innovation, talent development, business savvy, ethics, and a global outlook – thereby creating an even better environment for economic and responsible growth in the fashion industry.
Find out more here danishfashioninstitute.dk