Firm continues support of fashion incubator

Foster Swift Collins and Smith, PC is renewing its sponsorship of The Runway, Michigan's premier fashion incubator. The Runway helps fashion designers create a foundation for their business and provides them with the resources needed to produce their collections and move their product to market.

"We are proud to serve as a sponsor of this innovative program. Our primary role, as a sponsor of The Runway, and member of LEAP, is to provide designers an education on the legal essentials to start and grow a viable business as they enter Michigan's emerging fashion market," attorney Deanna Swisher said. "It is so much easier and cheaper to address legal issues early rather than later when problems and disputes arise."

Swisher leads a team of Foster Swift attorneys who provide specialized services to fashion and design industry clients. The team, Fosterfashion, works with designers to protect their brand, minimize risk and structure the business for long term growth. These attorneys also author the Fosterfashion blog(, which keeps designers and other participants in the fashion industry abreast of legal developments as they impact the fashion industry.

In February, The Runway was awarded a $65,000 grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation to continue developing programs that help fashion-centric entrepreneurs build their businesses. The Runway will be launching new programming at the end of the month with the creation of a monthly speaker series as well as other programmatic events for the designers. The programs will also be open to the public in an effort to expose The Runway to the community and vice versa.

"It's exciting to see the progress this incubator has made in the six months it has been open" says Quin D. Stinchfield, Business Incubation Manager for LEAP. "We are constantly looking for more ways to bring value to the Runway designers. Having sponsors who are familiar with the fashion industry, like Foster Swift, work with the designers reduces the business learning curve and hopefully speeds up the companies' rate of success.

"Traffic is up in the Runway's retail showroom," Stinchfield said. "Shoppers are enjoying the range and diversity in the lines carried. We are looking forward to an exciting 2015."

Published: Wed, Apr 29, 2015