Meet Our Creative Director

BEN1

I remember the first time Ben and I talked about what would become Raw Finery Studio. It was my birthday, we were on the Island, and as an artist who had recently lost my space to a condo development, I thought it was bloody brilliant. Fast forward a few years, and Raw Finery Studio has been born proving that actions can make ideas a wonderful reality.

During a meeting at our favorite west-end cafe (Holy Oak in case you were wondering), I ask him what it was that first gave him the inspiration to create Raw Finery Studio.

“I noticed that a lot of my friends were working from home studios set-up in their apartments. Sometimes it was on their kitchen counter or spare bedroom. It was always so cramped and the chances for spills is a constant worry. More worry for me is the fact that they are bending all funny while working long hours and often complaining of back and knee pain. I was expanding my studio, so I thought why not open it up so others can benefit as well.”

Ben is very focused on the community aspect of Raw Finery Studio, hoping to create a stronger fashion community like in New York or London.

“While in college I had a great connection with other fashion students and making new friends with others [in] various departments. Making connections was easy and many side projects and collaborations were made. When I was out of school, I was having a problem finding [the] space and equipment needed to set up my own studio. I [was only networking] at various industry events, and I didn’t feel the same chemistry as the environment at college.”

With Raw Finery Studio, networking and collaboration are a key component in the community environment. With high-tech equipment supplied in the space, networking events, workshops, and support for designers needs, the ability for designers and other fashion industry professionals to work together to create innovative designs and collaborations is much easier.

His love of technology is a huge aspect of the studio space as well. Ben is working with the Toronto Public Library’s innovation hub, teaching classes on photoshop, and 3D printing and design. He would like the studio to be a space for developing wearable technology and experimenting with different manufacturing techniques using new technology.

“Technology is getting to a point where a lot of the things I had seen in sci-fi shows as a child are becoming reality. Fashion is at an interesting crossroads right now where it is blending more than ever with evolving technology. I want to create a space where people from various disciplines can meet and create new and wonderful things.”

 

[Image courtesy of Anna Crooke Photography & Design]

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