Select designers receive subsidized office rent, design development, education and consulting for their brands.

Designers in Residence Accelerator Program

The AAF Designers in Residence Accelerator Program will provide resources to supplement 3 fashion designers and entrepreneurs with all the necessary key tools to launch their brand including office space, access to the sourcing library and machines, as well as guidance from industry leaders along the way.


• 6 months of shared work space with all utilities and Wifi included

• Onsite guidance from industry leaders

• Education/Consulting on design/manufacturing, tech packs, flats, specs, marketing, financing and business

• One Sloper/Block pattern and 2 variations of that style in a base size

• Sample sewing for 3 garments at cost

• Unlimited access to all machines in the makers space during building hours

• Unlimited access to the sourcing library during building hours

• Limited access to photography, video and sound studios​

• FABRIC Membership (See benefits HERE)

• Upgraded directory listing on LabelHorde

• Runway show featuring winners (includes event space, runway, chairs, lighting, sound, coordinator, marketing, photos/video)

• Branding, marketing package

Over $18,500+ value


Designers/brand owners should be willing to...

Commit at least 20+ hours a month during normal business hours to running their fashion brand at FABRIC.

Commit to grow your brand during the course of the program so it can be measured for economic impact for the city of Tempe.

Develop marketable products (at least 3 ready-to-manufacture pieces that have been developed with tech packs) to be shown on the runway at the end of the scholarship program in the scholarship fashion show CULTIVATE.

Participate in producing and marketing the Cultivate Fashion Show.

Attend all mandatory meetings and events listed below.

Actively participate in and/or attend all FABRIC/AAF community events including monthly Behind The Seams, business/industry seminars and workshops, AZ Eco Fashion Week, and any educational or marketing opportunities that are provided by FABRIC/AAF to the community, etc...

Add a business listing in the AZ fashion directory.

Subscribe to and read FABRIC/AAF's newsletter Haute Off The Press to stay informed of all opportunities.

Appear on camera or in print for media/press opportunities that promote your brand and/or FABRIC/AAF.

Continuing to participate in FABRIC/AAF activities and opportunities beyond the scholarship period for at least 1 year including the annual December Fashion Show featuring 60 local brands.

Actively promote scholarship activities on social media and other marketing effforts.

Mentor future scholarship winners.

Parking and transportation fees at FABRIC are the designer/brand's responsibility.

Building access is limited to regular business hours Monday through Friday 9:00am to 5:00pm.



November 10, 2019 Application Release

December 10, 2019 (midnight) Application Deadline

December 18, 2019 7pm 12 Finalists Chosen (Will be contacted by email by December 20th. If chosen, finalists are required to come in for interview on January 8, 2020)

January 8, 2020 (5:00PM-8:00PM) Interviews with 12 Finalists (Finalists required to attend) 

January 13, 2020 Winners Announced

January 24, 2020 Orientation

January 30, 2020 Finalist Celebrtion at Behind The Seams RSVP HERE

January 31, 2020 3 Winners Move In (Required to move in on this day)

Mandatory Class Dates TBD

July 18 or July 25, 2020 Tentative Fashion Show

July 29, 2020 Exit Interview

July 30-31, 2020 Move Out (Required to move out on this day, which includes removal of all personal property, return of keys and vacating private office and work space after returning those spaces to the condition at move In)


Deadline to apply December 10, 2019 midnight

Watch the Designer's CULTIVATE Fashion Show videos HERE.

Congratulations 2020 Finalists:

Ali Miller – Ali Miller Designs | Wedding Dresses (Mesa, AZ)
Bonnie Wiscombe – Novalie | Misses ready-to-wear (Mesa, AZ)
Dale James Hinerman – Dale James the Brand | Men’s/women’s special occasion (Paradise Valley, AZ)
Hillary Lenfesty – Freestyle Collective | Women’s post surgery fashions (Phoenix, AZ)
Jacob Firestone – Winters Clothing | Future inspired men’s wear (Tempe, AZ)
Jennifer Walter – Serving Glamour | Transgendered women’s fashion (Peoria, AZ)
Kinari Patel – Kinari Sari | Refashioned Saris (Chandler, AZ)
Lindsay Johnson & Nikki Lewis – Sequoia Clothing Co. | Tall women’s activewear (Phoenix, AZ)
Loren Aragon – ACONAV | Native American Couture (Maricopa, AZ)
Nick Wetta – West Major | Men’s vintage inspired western shirts (Phoenix, AZ)
Rico Worl – Trickster Company | Indigineous Athleisure (Tempe, AZ)
Roxane Kyte – Couture Aprons | Luxury aprons (Scottsdale, AZ)
Scott Warren – Heights Apparel | Tall men’s directional apparel (Tempe, AZ)

Congratulations 2019 Winners:

Jessica Wenger McPhaul Jay McPhaul of Naked RebellionHeywood and Ringo
Angelina Martin of ANYMYSTIK

Rawa Awad of Ethar Collection


Congratulations 2018 Winners:

Sea Snyder of New Scouts Clothing
Rebecca Berger of Born4Bikinis
Leonor Aispuro of Leonor Aispuro Private Collection


Congratulations 2017 Winners:

Jared Yazzie of OxDx

Marauders World Wide 



Special thanks to local business partners helping to make this program a possibility for local fashion designers!



Arizona Fashion Source 

The Fabric Store 

Superstar Entertainment

Xposed Capture

Bula Branding Co.



Chronic Behavior LLC

Enterprise Bank

2019 Winners

Heywood & Ringo


Jessica Wenger McPhaul and Jay McPhaul

  • Heywood & Ringo

Own your own big day. Don't rent it.

pink purple logo 2020.jpg



Angelina Martin

  • Anymystik

Wrap dresses and artistic designs made of custom, hand-painted textiles


Ethar' Collection


Rawa Awad

  • Ethar Collection

Modest evening wear classically designed.

Naked Rebellion


Jessica Wenger and Jay McPhaul

  • Naked Rebellion

Undergarments for ever skin tone

132 E 6th St, Tempe, AZ 85281, USA

(602) 743-4638

©2019 by Arizona Apparel Foundation.