Mon | Dec 5, 2016

Kristol Jackson hoping for further fashion success

Published:Thursday | November 20, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Kristol Jackson - Contributed

Leighton Levy, Gleaner Writer

In October 2013, Kristol Jackson was among four very inspired Jamaican artisans who walked away from Fort Rocky in Kingston with cheques for $250,000 after being named category winners in the 2013 Heineken Inspire competition.

This Friday, Jackson, a fashion designer, hopes to win another quarter-million, courtesy of the First Global Bank's MoDA Grant, as she displays her latest creation at the Collection MoDA showcase, set for The Jamaica Pegasus Ballroom in Kingston.

The showcase will feature designs of Claudia Pegus, Dexter Huxtable, Franz Christie, Lubica, Janel Jolly and André Rowe. Also on show will be the works of the five finalists vying for the grant. Jackson who will open the showcase, describes her capsule collection as a fusion of Asia and Africa, "a fusion of culture" that she hopes will make her the winner. "I think my chances are good. I hope the judges will see that I am into the business of fashion."

Fulfilling her dreams

Jackson, who is being mentored by Kerry Ann Clarke, said winning will help her to get closer to fulfilling her dreams of further expanding her growing fashion business. She is, however, cognisant that to do so, she has to top four other talented candidates. "They are a very talented group. I am amazed at some of the things they have put out," she said, hopeful that her creation and her desire will be enough for her to win the grant. "I feel I am on the verge of fulfilling what I really want to do, which is growing my business by producing market-ready clothing for my customers, online and in stores."

First Global Bank MoDA grant

The First Global Bank MoDA grant was established to reward innovation in aspiring young designers in the local fashion industry. An estimated 90 applicants responded to the call to action during the summer. Each designer was required to submit five sketches or images of a collection they created, as well as a 400 to 600-word essay on their fashion background, and why they should be awarded the MoDA grant. The applicants were also asked to provide five key words that described their respective collections. Once the applications were received, each of the top-five designers selected was asked to produce a finished sample of their work.

Jackson, who used her winnings from the Heineken Inspire competition to advance her business, explained that during the second phase of the competition, from which only 15 applicants would survive, each applicant was asked to create an unconventional piece using only unconventional material, no fabric. As The Gleaner is a sponsor and celebrating 180 years, the organisers paid homage by suggesting that the designers could use Gleaner newsprint in their designs. Jackson said she used Gleaner newsprint, garbage bags and other unconventional material to create what she described as an African/European fusion that paid homage to Emancipation. The Gleaner, she explained, began operations in 1834, the same year Emancipation was enacted.