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The Philadelphia Fashion Incubator provides emerging Philadelphia-based apparel and/or accessories designers with the resources to launch and grow their fashion businesses.


The Philadelphia Fashion Incubator will offer the Designers-In-Residence (DIR) comprehensive curriculum-based workshops focusing on the core components of how to build a brand, sustain a business, and break into the fashion marketplace. The workshops will include sessions ranging from trend forecasting, retail pricing and cost/value analysis, to distribution channels and finance management. DIR will also learn about profit margins, markups, sourcing and production. After undergoing this curriculum, the designers will have the essential business tools to maintain, manage and grow a successful fashion company.


Applicants seeking admission to the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator are required to:

  • Reside in the Philadelphia Region: 8 county area includes Philadelphia, the four PA Counties (Montgomery, Chester, Delaware and Bucks) and NJ – Camden, Gloucester, Burlington.

  • Be 21 years of age or older.

  • Provide a minimum of five (5) images of your garments. Ideally work that best reflects your vision for your brand. If called back for an interview, plan to show a these samples but preferably more.

  • Have already started (6 months - 5 years), a fashion business in the City of Philadelphia.

  • Must already have sales in the marketplace.

  • Serious commitment to further sustain and scale your business.

  • Pay $400/month Program Fee for the 12 months.

  • Be able to commit to PFI and their businesses completely, utilizing all available resources

  • Submit a non-refundable application fee of $100.


Designers who are ineligible to apply to this program:

  • Established designers who have been in business for more than 5 years.

  • Designers that have businesses located outside of the City of Philadelphia, or who plan to establish a business outside of the Philadelphia region.

  • Those who cannot commit to the Incubator, utilizing the office, workshop and studio space for a period of one year.

  • Those who cannot attend the full curriculum of workshops.

Judging Criteria

The Philadelphia Fashion Incubator Selection Committee, comprised of a team of industry professionals, will review applications based on the below criteria. Designers-in-Residence should:

  • Have the ability to commit to the program completely, utilizing all available resources, with the intent to launch their businesses as a full-time career.

  • Have a strong vision for their collection and/or a great business concept.

  • Demonstrate the highest level of responsibility and dedication to both the program and their business.

  • Demonstrate a manageable level of financial ability to fund their new businesses ($15,000+).

  • Have the ability to work well with others with the desire and flexibility to engage in and be respectful of the program’s many collaborations.

  • Understand that while we are here to provide resources and help our Designers-In-Residence establish their businesses, ultimately, our designers are responsible for each and every aspect of beginning, operating, and growing their individual companies.

  • Understand that we cannot help teach design. We do our best to provide the resources to help lay a proper business and production foundation for our designers.


Download your application here!

Submission & Fees

The Application must be submitted to the review panel in both printed and electronic format.

Electronic Submission Instructions

Electronic format must be sent via Dropbox or wetransfer only. DO NOT SEND directly via email.

Email to via Dropbox/wetransfer: elissa@PhiladelphiaFashionIncubator.com

SUBJECT line: FIRST and LAST NAME PFI Application

Printed Submission Instructions

Mail Printed Application To:

Philadelphia Fashion Incubator

706 S. 4th Street

Philadelphia, PA 19147

The application along with a non-refundable application fee of $100 must be received by, Sunday, February 4th, 2024.

Payment can be received via check along with the printed application. Please make your check payable to Philadelphia Fashion Incubator.


If you would like a tour of the incubator studio or to learn more about the residency, please email our Executive Director, Elissa Bloom at elissa@philadephiafashionincubator.com to set up a meeting.

Any questions regarding the application may also be submitted to elissa@PhiladelphiaFashionIncubator.com.

All applicants selected to continue in the application process will be expected to be available to participate in a zoom interview with the PFI review panel for approximately 30 minutes to be scheduled between February 9th and February 16th.

You must be prepared with at least five but preferably more samples that best define the collection you plan to work on while at the Incubator.

The chosen designers will be notified by February 23rd, 2024 and publicly announced on March 1st, 2024. Chosen Designers-in-Residence will promise to keep their acceptance private until the public announcement March 1st, 2024. Designers-in-Residence will be expected to be involved in Incubator activities and events beginning in March 2024.

Designer Checklist

Please be sure you have sent the following:

  • Application both Printed and Electronic

  • $100 non-refundable Application Fee via mail

  • Resume both Printed and Electronic

  • Images of a minimum of at least five garments in a press kit, lookbook, line sheet or similar format. Both Printed and Electronic

  • Two Letters of Reference both Printed and Electronic