History of Fashion Academy
"Image is a state of mind. It is visual. Fashion Academy Certified Consultants are trained to see in each individual the qualities that make that person unique and, in turn, teach that individual how to enhance those qualities. We believe this ability is an art that can be passed on through proper education and instruction. Fashion Academy's goal is to develop this art to the highest level possible in each individual."
It is because of this commitment to excellence that Fashion Academy has remained at the top of the image industry and is highly respected throughout the world.
Knowing the story behind Fashion Academy's success should be an inspiration for consultants working in the image industry. It shows that with determination and devotion to the "Art of Image", success can belong to anyone.
Gerrie Pinckney began her image and colour phenomenon by lecturing part-time with her soon to be partner, Marge Swensen, in the mid-1960's. The two were quite a team! They spoke to civic groups and clubs and taught classes at the YWCA. It was an exciting and energetic time for them. They had no idea that they would spark an interest in image development that would light the world for more than 27 years.
As interest grew and the years passed, it became evident that men and women throughout the world had the strong desire to learn about themselves through Colour, Personality and Body Analysis.
In 1972, Gerrie and Marge decided to combine their talents and open the "Fashion Academy". Marge taught sewing classes while Gerrie taught Colour, Line, Personality and Wardrobe Planning. As a result of their work in the community with personal development classes, there became a demand for women and men to receive instruction to become fashion and beauty professionals. This led Gerrie and Marge to create consultant training and to pioneer the "Image Industry" by offering California State Approved - Image Consulting Certifications worldwide.
In the mid-1980's, Marge decided to retire and sold her half of the business to Gerrie. This gave Gerrie wings to further develop her philosophies as well as the Your True Colours cosmetic line.
Gerrie has lectured to and certified thousands of consultants in the image industry. Fashion Academy has led the image industry with its knowledge, foresight and keen ability to access an individuals' colouring, personality and body line. Many of the colour-coordinated cosmetic companies began because of Fashion Academy's exceptional educational programs.
Together with her training staff and certified consultants, Gerrie has taken Fashion Academy from a homemakers dream to the "Top Image Institution" in the world. The Fashion Academy "Mission Statement" summarizes the feelings for each consultant and client:
"To build self esteem in ourselves by building the self esteem of others. This goal is achieved by the personal perfection of each person through the discovery and enhancement of their own individual qualities".
Today, Carolyn Bendall has taken charge of the company. She was trained by Gerrie, and began her career in the image industry in Memphis TN. She became the image consultant sought out for newspaper, magazines, and television, in the Memphis area. She began to train consultants, and then purchased the company. Under her tenure, the company took the Skin Tone Determining System out of the Total Image Class and presented it to hair colorists. She then ventured into beauty schools, taking the system into their curriculums. Retail Fashion Consultant is newest addition to the Fashion Academy certifications. Training those in the retail industry to better understand the needs of the client when they walk in the door of the boutique.
Teaming with Debra Norwood, Bendall took Fashion Academy to a new level, one of Life Image. Recognizing the need for people to learn how to set goals to make positive changes in their lives Bendall created the Your True Colours system. Norwood began working on the Look Good Feel Good program, highlighting those who have persevered through adversity. Then, taking it a step further to help others to develop the inner peace needed through humor, Humor4Peace. Together, they created CourageMakers, an annual conference combining Your True Colours, Look Good Feel Good and Humor4Peace to create courage within the attendees.
The success of Fashion Academy is a great example to those who have dreams of accomplishing their own goals. Anyone who is willing to devote their energies into the pursuit of excellence will be rewarded with the title and the skills of an "Image Maker".