Toronto is one of the fastest growing cities in North America, and has gained a reputation for being one of the most liveable cities in the world. Aside from the high real estate prices, Torontonians enjoy their city’s arts & cultural scene, including an emerging fashion movement.
Toronto has an official “fashion week” twice a year, sponsored by World MasterCard and it is part of the IMG conglomerate, but more importantly the city holds events throughout the year supported by different local organizations, that in return support local talent. I couldn’t find an official fashion calendar for Toronto, so I put together what I thought were the important upcoming fashion events this Spring/Summer, and if you know of any others, let us know!
Fashion Art Toronto is an annual event that each year focuses on a different theme and celebrates the expression of art through fashion, photography, fashion film and art installations. This year the 5 day event is once again held at Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas St East) and $40 gets you a full day of events.
This year, from April 21st to 25th, 100 artists will explore the #MADEINCANADA theme in one of the 5 sub-themes, with a different theme being presented each night: Great Wild, Cold North, Group of Seven, Northern Lights and Global Village.
Keeping in line of the made in Canada theme, Inland takes place May 2nd to May 3rd at the hip 99 Sudbury location in Liberty Village. The 2 day event takes place twice a year and it is basically a pop-up event for Canadian emerging fashion talent. The location offers a very fun, relaxed shopping experience, and with 80 designers showcasing from clothes to jewellery and shoes, there is something for everyone!
Inland is the perfect platform for local designers. It is much more affordable and inclusive than a traditional fashion week and it allows for a personal interaction between designers, consumers and retail buyers. Tickets are sold at the door for $5, see you there!
In Toronto there are also many fashion design schools, one of them is part of George Brown College where I have the honour to teach Social Media for Fashion Marketing. This end of year’s fashion show is held at the schools’ waterfront campus (can’t wait to see it – wonderful architecture!) on April 21st. I’ll probably meet a lot of my previous students and I look forward seeing our local aspiring fashion talent showcase. Tickets are free and you can get them on Eventbrite.
If you are in the mood for an elegant evening spent with everyone’s who’s someone in the Toronto Fashion industry, then you must attend this year’s #FajoSocial Spring event held in the heart of the city on May 12th. There will be local vendors, music, cocktails, crazy outfits, swag bags, an auction and so much more!
The list couldn’t have been complete without the New Labels Show organized by the Toronto Fashion Incubator. While the general admission tickets are all sold out, if you have deep pockets you can indulge in the VIP experience with a premier ticket for $175. Year after year, this Spring event has showcased some of the country’s best talent, and on May 4th you are invited at the prestigious One King West location for cocktails and fashion.
Finally, I’d love to mention an event that we are supporting, the MSH District‘s first hackathon. The MSH District is a space dedicated to the development and launch of new ideas and products made of fabric. The hackathon is a three day event from April 16th to the 19th and I look forward mentoring the next generation of fashion entrepreneurs through this much needed new venture.
Last week Toronto was buzzing with the sound of thousands of fashionistas and the click clack of fabulous stilettos could be heard around every corner. Toronto Fashion Week ( or World Master Card Fashion Week as it is officially known) took place last week where many Canadian designers showcased the best of their work. All of the designers brought their own style and story to their pieces while setting the trends for the upcoming spring season. They all gave us something to look forward to while we endure another blistering winter! These flowy and romantic pieces added a new level of sophistication that we can all hope to achieve for spring. Some key designers were highlighted for their excellent use of colour, patterns, and overall themes that truly encompassed the key trends for the warmer months we are already yearning for. Here are just a few below…
Toronto based designer Hilary Macmillan’s classic use of lady like silhouettes really hit it off at fashion week. Her use of a more romantic and loose look nods to the bohemian trend we can’t expect in Spring. Flowing garments that are both comfortable and sophisticated allow the wearer to exude an effortless type of style. The clothes literally speak for themselves. Another trend that was very prevalent at fashion week was the use of colour blocking and mixing and matching. Bold colours and patterns paired together to create looks that had great depth and dimension allows the wearer to keep it classy while still being fashion forward.
Hayley Elsaesser’s collection is all about the fun and flirty while still having an edge. She eluded to the cropped midriff showing trend that has come around and it looks like it’s here to stay. The midriff bearing clothes can be a bit daunting but Hayley’s use of the subtle flash that nods to the cropped trend makes it much more wearable. Again we see the mixing of patterns where one must find a unifying theme among two different patterns to create a solid look. Hayley did this beautifully.
Men’s fashion is certainly coming a long way and with designers like Christopher Bates producing such wearable adaptable clothing, our boys can step it up! Christopher’s collection has a modern take on safari and we see a new colour palette for him with the use of sand coloured tones, khaki and off white. Christopher was inspired by the movie “The English Patient” and he was so moved by that palette and interpreted it into this collections. Also big thing for spring is the more formal wearable shorts for men. Much for tailored for all occasions.
Leah Antoinette’s dreamy and romantic collection named “Regeneration” was a breath of fresh air indeed. The feeling of renewal and freshness was definitely present in this collection. Her use of a lush palette of fuchsias, turquoises and deep purples along with intricate knits nodded to the bohemian trend once again. This collection is very laid back, cool, and effortless. The knits in her collection were inspired by her grandmother who taught her to knit and the deep appreciation could definitely be seen in every thread. The collection also nods to the nautical trend. Stripes come and go, but according to this collection they will never be more relevant than now!
To me, Matthew Ghallager was the star of the show. With his feminine, sophisticated silhouettes and clothing that fit beautifully, really compliments a woman’s silhouette. His use of a pastel colour palette can be described as nothing but pretty, soft, and beautiful. I know I was not the only one who was left speechless by the truly beautiful pieces he had to offer.
This Article was written by Angie. Follow her on twitter @Unngie
https://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/haley-el-1.png600399Luevo Teamhttp://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/luevo-logo-2x.pngLuevo Team2014-10-31 13:07:132014-12-11 15:32:19We take you to Toronto Fashion Week S/S15
Heaven was walking on the runway on Wednesday evening at Fashion Arts Toronto 2014. Crisp white and basic black minimal pieces, and yet more elegant than ever, ZOFF’s effortlessly chic collection had us falling in love. Classic pieces with a contemporary twist, we are absolutely enamoured by the entire collection. Crusader capes, pencil skirts, pleated dresses; the mix of designs of this collection is endless.
Mesh is known for its athletic aesthetic, but there was nothing sporty about the white mesh skirts of this collection. We have seen the mesh trend take over the runaway, but ZOFF’s mesh silhouettes were breathtaking.
We also adored the metal wire sculptures aligned in the centre of the runway. Not only did they add an urban feel to the ultra-delicate collection, but also they nicely complimented the metal statement necklaces worn by the models. It is hard to narrow down our favourite piece from the collection because we simply loved them all, but there are two that stood out the most.
The first standout is a white, relatively loose dress paired with a mesh floor length skirt. Pairing the skirt’s transparent fabric with the dress’s solid white fabric, gave the perfect balance for a lady-like design. Adding a feminine touch to the ensemble is the bow at the front of the skirt. This piece is also a great alternative for those brides that want to steer away from the conventional wedding dress and wear a contemporary, yet elegant design on their special day. The second piece that left us speechless is the final piece; a romantic, pure white tulle gown.
Well-placed details and delicate fabrics, the ZOFF collection introduces the modern trends, but preserves the grace of the past.
https://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/1017157_464012583731322_7447212170911888236_n.jpg777534Ana Carahttp://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/luevo-logo-2x.pngAna Cara2014-05-05 15:00:112014-12-11 15:44:32ZOFF Review: Arts and Fashion Week Toronto
Maybe By Catalfo was created by Sarah Catalfo, an emerging Canadian designer, who’s fun and playful designs are a thorough reflection of her personality. This sweet and spunky girl is no stranger to the fashion world and her story is an inspiring one! It’s the kind of story that makes you want to take a chance on yourself. Those are the ones that turn out to be the most rewarding after all. I had the great opportunity to meet Sarah and learn more about her story and her brand “Maybe by Catalfo”.
Growing up in Orillia, Ontario, Sarah always felt the need to be different and stand out. She explained to me that the Fashion scene in her town was pretty one dimensional and no one really took risks or expressed themselves through fashion in the way that she felt the need to. Fashion was more than just putting clothes on. It was a way of life, a way to express herself. She was the type of girl that would rock of pair of great stilettos and red crinoline to third period Math, without even batting an eye. Very Pretty in Pink-esque if you will! Being a risk taker from a very young age, taking the risk to pursue a career in the fashion industry was second nature to her. “I wasn’t sure about fashion as it was a risky industry to get into. I went to school for Fashion Management and got hired as an assistant buyer. I learned a great deal there but I wasn’t being fulfilled. I had to go back to my roots and at least try my hand at designing.”
Designing has always been a passion of Sarah’s. She began designing right in the comfort of her own home as most designers do. Printing out blank Archie comics and creating fun designs for Betty and Veronica, was one of her favourite things to do as a youth. Her actual career in design however, really started when the time came to find a dress for her 10th grade semi formal. She decided she wanted something unique that no one else would have. As any girl would, she evoked the help of her mother, who had always been an amazing seamstress, and the end result turned out exactly the way she wanted. Her mother, who worked a full time job and still found the time to make that beautiful dress for her daughter then said, “Alright, now next time you’re making your own!”
Sarah loved the idea; to be able to wear something that was genuinely hers lit a spark in her heart and the rest was history. “After that I started working at Fabricland, so I learned a lot of old lady tricks and learned a lot about fabric that I was never taught in school. Looking back it was a great move. To this day, I have to be around fabrics to get inspired.” As the years progressed, Sarah created dresses for herself and even went on to work on a freelance basis, creating dresses for others who took a liking to her unique designs. She has even designed for the famous Canadian artist Lights, who wore a Maybe by Catalfo dress to the 2009 Juno Awards!
The Maybe Story
What is the story behind the sweet and simple name “Maybe”?
It really started as a school project. The assignment was to create your own line, with all the details that a real line would need. It was a very creative project. I knew I wanted to make dresses but I thought about naming it “Catalfo” since no one has that name. But I came across the word “Maybe” and it really struck a chord and grew on me. It reminded me of classic foot pop like “maybe ill go out with you”, “maybe ill go to the school dance”, that kind of cutesy feel. It has now evolved from that, into a more sophisticated feel, catering to everyone from young girls to young women.
As such a young designer I’m sure it hasn’t been an easy road. What obstacles have you had to face and overcome to get where you are today?
Everything from being at work and feeling like, “is this what I’m supposed to be doing? Why am I doing this?”. A huge obstacle was getting caught in a full time job, how do you adjust a stable life to that of an entrepreneur? Making that transition was hard but it fell into place. I take it as: whatever happened was meant to be and it was a huge blessing that I was able to make that transition. I saw people who were older and stuck in jobs that they hated. I didn’t want that to be me. There will always be challenges when starting a business, obstacles don’t discourage me. It doesn’t mean you’re not doing well, if anything it means you’re doing things right.
The Choose Your Charity Program is a very admirable thing to take part in. What made you want to take part in such a philanthropic endeavor?
I didn’t want to start promoting Maybe without looking at the bigger picture. To be able to impact something bigger and put it towards these efforts that are for a good cause is important to me. Success is not about how much we make. Essentially, I want to make more dresses so that I’m able to make bigger donations. I want the Maybe girls to feel like they were helping the world. It’s great to work with local charities for fashion. It always keeps you aware and appreciative of all the things you have. At the end of the year I look back and I realize how all these little efforts made a big difference and it puts things into perspective. Clients and customers have things that are dear to their hearts and if they care about it, we want to show that we care too.
The Luevo Collection
All of your dresses are very unique and portray a completely different style. What inspirations did you draw on to create this collection available on the Luevo website?
What really inspired me was the fabrics, it’s always the fabrics that inspire me and inspire the dresses I make. Each fabric could be for a different girl, each colour could be for a different girl. The collection is something so diverse that you could wear every one for a different life event. The day to day outfits you can make from them are countless. I wanted party wear but also something easy to wear. I’m always looking for a reason to dress up and it’s better to be given a reason and to have fun with what you wear!
Describe the “Maybe Girl”, who is she to you?
The Maybe girl doesn’t care if she gets attention as long as its the right attention. The Maybe girl is reminiscent of the young me; flirty, fun, not afraid to take a risk or have fun with fashion. When I was in school, my friends and I would go to American Apparel, get something great and go out just to be able to show off that new outfit! That’s what the Maybe Girl embodies. She’s carefree, she doesn’t take life too seriously, and that’s why she likes to have fun with what she wears because as long as she feels beautiful in what she’s wearing, that’s all that matters.
What is your favourite dress on the Luevo website right now?
I don’t have a favourite! I would need them all in my wardrobe. Date night, party, day to night, they are all necessities.
Sarah Catalfo’s story is one that embodies perseverance. It’s okay to take a risk if it’s for something you truly believe in and what’s more important than believing in yourself? You could end up with everything you want and more, as long as you’re willing to work for it.
Mercedes-Benz Start Up is an annual competition for start-up fashion designers hosted at World Master Card Fashion Week and it is focusing on talented fashion designers across Canada. With the promise of ongoing mentorship, a solo catwalk during fashion week next season and editorial support in FASHION, one of Canada’s leading magazines, the grand prize is highly sought after. It was obvious there was no shortage of talented participants for the competition, as each of the eight lines presented were exceptional in their design and execution. At the end of the show, the grand prize was awarded to two winners instead of one for the first time in the competition’s history.
The first winner, Malorie Urbanovich, is an Edmonton based designer who showcased not only beautiful easy to wear pieces, but nostalgic 90s throwbacks. Malorie Urbanovich has given us permission once again to find love layering simple silk dresses with boxy plush cardigans and sweaters. The outfits were reflective of design as a whole in architecture and interior design, with a minimalist, comfortable and unpretentious feeling. Any of her pieces would be a timeliness addition to any wardrobe for Spring 2014.
The second winner, Celine Raizonville, hails from Montreal with her urban chic line Matiere Noire. During the show, Celine presented soft, feminine boxy pieces from her Spring 2014 line in soft solids and bold horizontal striping. The neutral colour palette of black, white and oatmeal often had a punch of plum, a colour usually reserved for darker fall colours. The colours were a refreshing change for a Spring collection. Her collection was rounded out with quirky visors and a youthful socks-with-heels look. For all of the reasons listed, it is clear why a deadlock took place between the judges. Each line encompasses a perfect balance of fresh style paired with favourite attributes from fashion past. Any piece from either collection not only support Canadian fashion, but independent fashion designers as a whole.
It was an absolute honour and pleasure to be invited at Sid Neigum‘s fashion show as part of Toronto’s recent WMCFW festivities. The collection surpassed my expectations, simple but elegant and it still had the shock factor, this time found in the choice of boots!
I really enjoyed the geometry of Sid’s designs, as well as the peek-a-boo cut-outs and the overall clean look. I noticed a very limited palette of colours, but that made the collection even more so elegant. And of course, everyone was buzzing about those boots as if the models were walking out of a sci-fi movie. Surprisingly, but there were no casualties among the gracious models as they paraded down the runway. Speaking of the models, I couldn’t help but notice how beautiful they all looked! With their angel-like faces, perfect and simplistic make up they were picture-perfect!
Everyone came out to see Sid’s latest collection, including celebrities such as model Stacey McKenzie. Overall, I think it was a great mix of people, and I really enjoyed the vibe of excitement and anticipation.
I hope you enjoy our exclusive photography of the show. Remember if you want to use these you need to get permission from framestopper.ca.
https://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/DSC_2761.jpg21281416Ana Carahttp://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/luevo-logo-2x.pngAna Cara2013-11-02 17:21:192014-12-12 14:40:55Sid Neigum's collection at WMCFW
It’s fashion week season and last week it was finally Toronto’s turn. We were so happy to be invited to Melissa Nepton’s show and I couldn’t ask for a better viewing seat! Armed with our passes we were sat in our front row seats. At that point I realized that I’ve never been on that side of the curtain before. Yes, I’ve been to runway events before, but I’ve always participated either as a model or as an organizer. Throughout the event, I couldn’t help picturing myself walking the runway in Melissa’s outfits and I was submerged into the concept behind her collection. You see, a show is not just about the designs, it is about the designer’s choice in models, in make-up and styling, it is about the music and the lighting, as it all comes together in those minutes on the runway.
The first model walks out and Melissa just stole my heart. Inspired from the Japanese culture and Nipponic fashion trends, her pieces reminded me of Kirigami, the Japanese art of paper-cutting. Cut-out dresses and tops are made for the confident woman that has nothing to hide. I also noticed a lot of playful geometrical patterns that bring out the inner child in the beholder. The models wore Kabuki inspired make-up and shoes that brought a pop of colour to the runway. It seems that the black and white trend will continue into next year’s spring and summer seasons, but be generous when applying that blush ladies!
Melissa created the perfectly balanced collection. Her wearable pieces are both minimalistic and bold with clean-cut lines and découpes. A glimpse of the designer at the end of the show and months of hard work were over just like that, but I am happy to have participated at one of the best shows that Toronto Fashion Week offered.
Melissa Nepton is one of the most promising Canadian fashion talents and she has proven it by winning The Target Emerging Designer Award earlier this year. You can shop Melissa’s current collection in over 60 boutiques across Ontario and Quebec and also on her own online store at https://melissanepton.com.
We hope that you enjoy our pictures! Please note that these images are the property of http://www.framestopper.com and you can’t use them without their permission.
Toronto-based Christopher Bates is an intrepid designer achieving a meteoric rise in the fashion industry. The designer trained in Milan at legendary Istituto Marangoni and he is already a favorite designer among celebrities. The Christopher Bates line is the definition of clean lines, chic designs with a dash of 1950s styling. The line focuses on smart-casual wear, great for transitioning from day to night, or even work to wedding. With both ready-to-wear and bespoke are available, there is a piece for every stylish man to stand out in the crowd.
The garments were featured on the Globe & Mail for showcasing some of the boldest designs on the runway. Toronto Star writers admired the mixture of materials and bright colours and the Edito praised Christopher Bates for continuing their famous wow factor. Other editorials including Frank, Dress to Kill and Urbanebloc had raving reviews of the young designer and his collections.
You can find the Christopher Bates newest collection at Holt Renfrew and exclusive items on Luevo soon. Please sign up at www.luevo.com for early access!
https://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/bates_web.jpg315573Ana Carahttp://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/luevo-logo-2x.pngAna Cara2013-09-12 20:32:102014-12-11 16:05:30Menswear designer Christopher Bates
B.E. Shields is an exciting new label that features the creative mind of Toronto based fashion designer, Theresa Ibbetson. Theresa has spent most of her formative years in Europe and drew inspiration from years of travelling to launch B.E. Shields upon her return home in Canada. The designer is formally trained at the prestigious College LaSalle, fashion design program in Montreal.
B.E. Shields is about simplicity, life, family and friends.
B.E.SHIELDS is a line which focuses on understated elegance and originality. With a strong attention to details, fabrics and cuts, Theresa built a brand which is both classic and elegant, which still remains edgy and modern. B.E. Shields’ most recent show was during Fashion Art Toronto week, for which she received raving reviews. We look forward seeing many more from Theresa, and if you want to get a peek into her new collection, make sure you register at www.luevo.com.
https://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/beshields.jpg637960Ana Carahttp://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/luevo-logo-2x.pngAna Cara2013-09-05 21:31:272014-12-12 14:22:43Featuring B.E. Shields
Lois Laine – instant favourite clothing – creates playfully chic clothing for the modern superwoman. Lois Van Koughnet is the designer behind the independent label and her design couples architectural elements with feminine subtlety to transform comfortable clothing into timeless pieces. She has spent years studying pattern drafting and after an inspirational trip to India she began her self-titled eco-friendly line in 2011. The Lois Laine garments are made of quality eco-sensitive and natural fabrics including organic cotton, silk, wool, bamboo, hemp, recycled polyester, and production bolt ends. This designer has the unique talent of bridging the casual and dressy allowing the garments to be worn in multiple settings. All her pieces make a statement but at the same time have a certain degree of subtlety.
We are very excited to have Lois as one of our designers and she is now working on a new collection that will be available for pre-ordering on Luevo. Sign-up today to have exclusive access to her timeless pieces here.
https://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Image-1-Lois-Lane.jpg6821024Ana Carahttp://www.luevo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/luevo-logo-2x.pngAna Cara2013-08-26 16:53:342014-12-12 14:23:32Introducing Lois Laine
We are a team of marketers, strategists and storytellers. We want to empower emerging fashion designers with access to free tips and tools to manage their business. More so, we offer consulting services, webinars and online fashion courses. Our deep understanding of crowdfunding principles and technology allows us to help designers meet their crowdfunding goals on any platform