With the impact of COVID-19 on small business owners globally coupled with the difficulties many small businesses are facing in an ever-changing world, the Global Connections for Women Foundation is pleased to announce our launch of the GC4W Marketplace. The GC4W Marketplace is an e-commerce site that will provide guests with the opportunity to support small women-owned businesses while viewing and purchasing various products under one application. Small businesses will have the opportunity to feel supported during a new transition and have the opportunity to connect with new customers.

GC4W invites Fashion Director and PR Executive, Francesca Vuillemin, to direct the recent fashion shoot for the GC4W Marketplace Official Debut of the site vendor.

The Inspiration for the Mood board…

“For starts, it was important to capture the original intention of the female entrepreneurs on the GC4W Marketplace — and in doing so, demonstrate their affection for their craft and designs in a mood that captures the essence of their brand’s message,” said Francesca V.

“My vision for the shoot was to make the statement that sustainability is luxury; well-crafted pieces should last forever thereby supporting the environment” shared Francesca. “Additionally, because GC4W stands for the Global Connections for Women – what better way to launch the gc4w marketplace with unique accessories handcrafted ateliers from around the world by female founders who value style with substance.”

The Vendors, I Selected…

Amato Style (New York)– I first met the CEO and creative director during the GC4W university program held at the WING in Soho and instantly loved her vivacity that translates into the jewelry pieces she creates. 

Cate Brown (Vancouver & New York City)- Cate Brown is my sustainable luxe superhero. The award-winning interior designer is dedicated to creating beautiful products while minimizing the carbon footprint. 

Lordess Shoes (New York & New Jersey)- I had the pleasure of meeting her for our virtual graduation in July, I was blown away by the shoes she created to enhance her customer’s wardrobe while also being mindful of comfort and used her shoes for the upcoming cover of RESERVED magazine issue 6 with Dr. Lilian on the cover.

MAB Lilian is truly inspiring. As a fan of prints, these beautifully crafted padfolios and collapsible storage units using vibrant Nigerian prints will instantly brighten your day and surroundings.

Oobaby – The chic belts and bags made ethically in Canada, the UK and Brazil really spoke to me. From the design hardware detail to the quality of the leather used, Ooobaby accessories are outstanding.

Stivali (New York & Columbia) –  Handmade shoes by artisans in Columbia, co-founders Lina Cristancho and Louis Guarin have changed the game in footwear. With their meticulous care for the comfort of their customers to a size run of size US 5/5.5- 12, you will fall head over heels with Stivali.

Yina Yina (New York) –  Yina Yina’s beautifully crafted bags have the most delightful color palette ranging from large totes to pouches that will infuse any outfit with the perfect balance of minimalist chic. 

I deeply believe in the power of accessories to transform you and positively impact the world around you. I also wanted to show how the accessories could effortlessly transition from business casual to a more festive mood captured with a street-style feel.”

The ROLE Models I chose and why…

The (ROLE) models Dr. Lilian Ajayi-Ore, Madison Papp & Quin Hoyne Tana did a beautiful job of representing the pinnacle of confidence which to me is supporting others shine.”

Role model 1: Dr. Lilian Ajayi-Ore 

Where to begin… My biggest role model is Dr. Lilian Ajayi-Ore- NYU professor, devoted mother and wife, and founder of GC4W everything she touches turn into gold.

I could not even envision a shoot without her in it. Having had the pleasure to style her for her upcoming issue of RESERVED MAGAZINE cover issue 6, Dr. Lilian Ajayi-Ore exudes all the qualities one can aspire to be as a female leader. Graceful with flawless skin and perfect posture, I had so much fun styling her.

Role model 2: Madison Papp 

Personal chef, recipe developer, and philanthropist, I met Madison at a LEADING events party in 2019 where her culinary creations had me bewitched. With an impressive New York clientele, Madison also donates her services to support bakers against racism and is an active member of the Park Avenue Armory’s education program.

Role model 3: Quin Hoyne 

I had the pleasure of meeting Quin in the elevator of the MADE hotel and saw her star quality. The international fashion model, engineer, humanitarian, and recent GC4W ambassador personified the GC4W community. Speaking multiple languages and an avid supporter of women, she is one to watch.

The photographer for the GC4W Marpletplace Fashion shoot was captured by Andrew Zeiter.

About Francesca Vuillemin, Fashion Director and Humanitarian

Francesca Vuillemin has dedicated her career to integrating public relations, sales, and marketing strategies across social and experiential platforms. She began her career as an international fashion model, representing lifestyle and luxury brands through fashion media platforms. As her popularity grew in social media, she parlayed her social platform expertise into consultancies evolving into management roles for product launches and retail partnerships. Francesca brings her expertise in experiential activations driving sales and funding for philanthropic organizations and companies that support social impact by empowering women and respecting nature.

Francesca’s passion for uplifting women and supporting female entrepreneurs is evident in how she leads her life as an artist, contribution, humanitarian, activist, friend, angel, and board chair. We are thrilled to have her support and excited to see how the world responds to our message of support for female entrepreneurs in a time when small businesses face the biggest challenge because of the global pandemic.

Visit shop.gc4women.org to shop the look and to support small businesses with a purchase today.