When I was a little kid I use to change several times a day so I could wow everyone around me with my fabulous outfits. While I realized around 5 or 6 this was slightly psychotic, from an early age my joy of wearing my headband with my hairline visible, clashing and cutting necklaces apart to make new jewelry knew no bounds. I hoped to be a fashion designer, a zoologist, artist or a professional athlete that could compete at the Olympics... A rather odd combination of dreams on reflection.
Although I quickly realized that I lacked scientific inclinations aside from specimen collection and dreamy field note taking, had no profound athletic talent or art skills, I still always liked fashion although I was forbad from studying such an entirely useless topic for college... so I settled on advertising. But in 2009 on my third job following an economic crash I managed to get my foot in the door for fashion. Having written about the industry for 8 years now I sometimes forget how much I know and am sometimes semi shocked people don't "get" it.
So with that in mind I thought I'd share a few resources that provide links to various events, companies, shops and brands that you can check out if you are a non fashion professional who is interested in learning more about fashion. I would say the number one thing to remember is it is a subjective industry that reflects both the potential possibility and superficial vanity that is humanity so while there is a certain logic to the business side of things, don't expect the trends side to be so cut and dry. People are irrational and this is directly reflected in the clothing they wear which is a projection of both the environment around them as well as the self they would like society to see.
If you go to We Connect Fashion there's a pretty exhaustive directory of companies under sourcing that's a good jumping point.
You can also check out Modem which caters to the fashion and design industries. Just toggle through the site by topic. I almost cried when I found the exhaustive global multi-brand store list. I can't read Korean or Japanese so literally for work this was amazing!
Last but not least Not Just A Label is a designer platform that is great for exploring designers in countries you are curious about but may not know well.