Style Chronicles: Tara Monfared

My name is Tara Monfared from the IG account @styledbytara.m

My blog and IG channel started as a creative outlet during my career working in finance for the Federal Government of Canada. I always dreamed of working in the fashion industry since it has always been my biggest passion, but living in Ottawa, Canada my options were limited which is why I decided to take it online. StyledbyTara has since grown into a visual diary where you will find a collection of style inspiration, life experiences, travel adventures, and beauty tips.

Fashion has always been an important part of my life. It has accompanied me since a young age and has shaped my life. I believe fashion is a statement. It’s versatility enables you to express yourself in who you are.

I believe personal style evolves as you learn who you are, what you want, and what you love and much like my blog, my style has evolved a great deal over the years.

Although I’ve always leaned towards the trendy side of things, I still try to keep it timeless. I rock trends like fanny packs and chain belts but use them to compliment an outfit rather than making the pieces the main attraction. I love mixing modern embellishments with classic items.

As much as I love my city, I have to admit fashion is not most people’s priority here so I have always found inspiration through other means like travel, social media, and good old fashion magazines. I spend a few months of the year in Europe which is where I find most of my inspiration. I love street style fashion the most and I always get inspired by the diversity of people’s style and in turn this influences me to unleash my creativity and have fun with fashion rather than to tame my style solely because of the conservative style of my city. I feel content dressing the way I feel best even if some of the items I wear may be ‘too trendy’ for where I live.

Thank you Tara for giving us an insight into your style! Readers follow Tara at @styledbytara.m.

@helananas on Fashion, Ambition, and the Power of Colour

London-born Visual artist Helen Anna is highly sought after for her aesthetic and knack for storytelling.  Helen has a postgraduate in design and has also studied language, silversmithing and textile design. As a freelance creative in Vancouver, Helen’s fashion clients span everything from backpacks to bridal couture. We sat down with Helen on the front row of VFW to talk Vancouver fashion and style icons, and to dig deeper into Helen’s fascination with the power of colour.

What are the cons of freelance?

You have to be really motivated and you have to be really driven.  Time management can be a problem - not for me, but I know people that have struggled with it.  You also can’t be shy - you have to be ready to put yourself out there and tell people what you do and show them that you believe in yourself to convince them to put their dollars behind you.  Overall, though, there are very few cons - it’s mostly a lot of pros!

What are the pros of freelance?

The biggest pro for me is being able to work whenever I want.  Creativity ebbs and flows, and as a freelancer, you can work within your rhythm, and take time out when you’re not feeling so creative. It’s great to be able to fit my work around my life, rather than vice versa!

Another pro is that you get to learn about your clients and their industries. Not learning anything new had been a challenge for me in my corporate past life, so I really appreciate the opportunities I get now to keep expanding my knowledge.  

How would you describe your personal style?

It’s a bit of an eclectic mix.  I do love designer brands - which would be something I would have never said even five years ago. As I’ve gotten older and been able to afford labels a bit more often, I’ve just realized the quality is just so much better.  If you compare it with fast fashion, one will be in the trash in six months, and one will still be loved for many years to come. I also think the way you treat your clothing changes when you’re investing a little more in it - it becomes a precious object.

What inspires your style?

I find I admire women from the past!  Jackie O, Audrey Hepburn, Francoise Hardy - if you look at their outfits, and the look is still good today,  that’s a good sign that that silhouette is on point.

What’s your favourite decade?

If I had to choose it would be the 60s.  There was also a lot going on socially and that turbulence showed up in fashion. Social trends materialise into fashion years later - the hippieness of the 60s really materialised into fashion in the 70s!

Who is your biggest style icon?

If I’m in a rut, the first person I’ll look up is probably Alexa Chung.  She’s really beautiful and her care-free attitude comes through in her clothing.  She’s very magnetic and charismatic, and I love that.

What is it about colours that interests you so much?

I remember in my first year of design school they wouldn’t let us touch colour at all - everything was black and white in order to learn the basics of design, form, and shape.  I remember complaining to one of the older students that I wanted to get my hands on colour and he turned around and clapped back ‘you’re not ready for colour yet.’ That comment always stuck with me because at the time I remember thinking: ‘buddy, you don’t know how wrong you are. I’m SO ready for colour.

I run a colour series on Instagram where I ask the same question (what does this colour make you think of?) to hear how people respond to different colours.  It’s always so interesting. Someone might answer that it makes them feel ‘bored’ and someone else might say ‘it reminds me of a stormy day at my grandma’s house.’  People can have such different interpretations.

Have you noticed any patterns in people’s answers?

There are certain colours that are so ubiquitous.  If I post a colour that is used by a brand, for example, people will always comment that it made them think of the brand.  One thing that’s surprising to me is that when I post a new colour I always have a very clear idea in my mind of what that colour is and means, but no one has ever said my answer ever.  It just goes to show how subjective the whole thing is.

What is your favourite colour?

I really love International Klein blue.  It’s close to the colour that Matisse used in his blue nudes.

What is the most positive response you’ve gotten to a colour?

I get a lot of positive responses to that sunflower-y kind of yellow.  People share lots of childhood memories with that colour. It always amazes me how personal people will get when I ask what a colour makes them think of.

What do you think will be a big trend this year?

There’s an accountability in fashion now that we didn’t feel even just a few years ago.  I remember working in fashion a decade ago, and sustainability and eco fashion was kind of like this niche pocket that felt a bit granola-y, whereas now its more of a mainstay: more consumers are asking “where is this piece coming from”?  I believe the more we as consumers ask those questions to designers and brands, the more that question is attended to by their shareholders, and the more it is taken seriously. We have to find resourceful, healthy ways to produce our clothing that is going to benefit the planet and benefit people - and still look bomb as well!

Thank you Helen for giving us an insight into your world. Readers- take a look at Helen’s beautifully curated Instagram here.

Global Fashion Collective at Amazon Fashion Week Tokyo

Unique fabric manipulations, casual silhouettes, and creative colouring were brought to the forefront of the first show from Global Fashion Collective. Three creative brands from around the world showcased emerging trends for the SS19 season on the Amazon Fashion Week Tokyo runway at Shibuya Hikarie Hall.

First up, Atelier M/A showcased ‘Oneness’, their debut collection. ‘PAST’ and ‘FUTURE’ lettering spelled out the concept that ‘everything is one’, as Japanese designers Masato Koide and Azusa Koide presented a ‘coexistence of diversity’ by combining traditional hand sewing with digital print work and recycled plastics. A soft polka dot motif and colourful patterns created from strips, gave a beautiful naive style. Short-cut high-waisted pants worn over printed tights, lightweight raincoats, knitted jerseys, and sneakers made for casual styling. A key look- a grey checked suit with white contrast polka dots, worn with silver brogues made a slick and stylish statement. A wearable yet creative line, the collection drew attention to the designers intuitive approach to design.

Next, U.S brand The House of AmZ presented a collection fragmented into capsules: Winter, Neutral, Lotus, Blush, Amalgamation, and Finale. Each capsule developed the concept ‘Self_ An Amalgamation’, reflecting the various emotions and responses to situations as we bloom into ourselves and grow, not unlike the way of the Lotus flower. Designer Alexandra Marie Zofcin utilised fabric manipulations to create shape, with pleats, gathers, and woven strips forming the silhouettes. A selective colour palette of sage green, beige, pastel pink, navy, cream, grey, and burgundy enhanced feminine cuts. A delicate raffia gilet overlay added texture, and beautiful Shantung fabric, iridescent in colour, beautifully caught the light.

German designer Annika Klaas brought shades of sunshine for Spring/Summer with monochromatic collection ‘Jaune’. In different tones of yellow, textured knits were folded, pinched, and pleated to create structured looks. The painterly palette crossed from brazen canary to lighter lemon with soft matching bags and knitted-in pockets adding dimension. A seamless collection, Annika developed a new production technique by imagining a digital knitting machine as a 3D printer. A wrap over skirt in a warmer tone, was paired with a strapless top with large loose pleats creating a soft and natural form.

The second presentation of Global Fashion Collective at Shibuya Hikarie Hall highlighted an artistic expression, with edgy, feminine and quirky styles for Spring Summer 2019 presented by three North American designers.

EmulEos packed a punch to start off the evening, with models full of attitude sporting diamond encrusted boxing gloves and visors. North Carolina designer Emily Prozinksi was inspired by female boxers for collection ‘Tougher Than Diamonds’. Silvers and shades of black dominated throughout with oversized hoods, metal chainwork, studded boots, and faux snakeskin creating an edgy style. Diamonds and beading glistened under the light, while chiffon and georgette shimmered at the slightest movement. A key look featured mid-length balloon pants with a grey zip-up jacket, with silver chains adorning an oversized hood.

Alicia Perrillo brought a whimsical colour palette and feminine gowns to the runway with collection ‘Sans’. Techniques such as painting, beading, crochet, and embroidery paid homage to the Chicago based designer’s late grandmother. A soft muted colour palette in lavender, periwinkle, dove grey, pale pink, gold, white, and black graced figure-flattering dresses, enhanced with beading detail, smudges of gold, and black floral appliqué. A white long sleeve fishtail dress with soft pink painted effect and pale blue frills was accessorized with handmade tassel earrings. Asymmetric hemlines and layers of ruffles created shape across the line. The showpiece- pale layers of sheer over a full-length gown with shoulder cutouts and long flowing sleeves, complete with tiara and veil making a strong feminine statement.

Quirky printwork by Canadian designer GRANDI brought a fun feel for Spring/Summer 19. ‘PRISMANIA’ a demi-couture collection featured a pop art interpretation of the chinoiserie decor style with a large scale surrealist graphic print incorporating bananas, leaves, and donuts. Colour blocking broke up the pieces with bold yellow, blues, greens, and pinks, and dramatic eyewear by Black Iris with tassles and embellishments completed the looks. Classic cuts in A-line skirts, cigarette pants, and fitted jackets made for stylish wearable pieces. A key look featured a silk strapless dress with fitted bodice worn over a printed shirt with contrast cuffs and collar, showcasing designer Grandy’s eye for styling. An artistic collection to close the shows.


Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images.





Day 7 at Vancouver Fashion Week S/S19

Sunday, September 23rd, 2018 – Vancouver, BC – VFW closed the week with an extraordinary line-up of local and international designers.

Alex S Yu opened the final day of shows with ‘The Abnormal Symmetry’ collection. Featuring a plethora of navy and white stripes, denim, asymmetrical hemming and peplum detail, the Canadian based label expertly played with proportions, patchwork, and layering.

Canadian designer Evan Clayton took the runway by storm with his eccentric collection, ‘Ego’. Placing the main focus on branded underwear sets, models clad in crotchless slick patent trousers, skin-tight bodysuits, sheer kimonos, and glossy plastic breastplates delighted the audience. With help from drag queen trio Gia Metric, Jane Smoker, and Kendall Gender, and his initials garishly glittered across most of the collection, the designer no doubt left a lasting impression.

For SS19, Jessica Tierney for Chained Couture presented her NYC inspired collection, ‘CHAINED’. The Australian designer’s all black line featured shoulder padded duster coats held together by metal loops and chains, oversized silver belts, satin flared pants, and faux fur shawls, leaving a gothic atmosphere hanging over the runway.

China based brand Wan Li put on a display of intricacy and craftsmanship with their showcase of traditional Chinese Cheongsams. Splitting their show into three sections, the designers sent a rainbow procession of gowns down the runway each accented with oriental style stitch work. Using mature models to showcase their collection, the label succeeded in bringing China to BC.


JPK channelled the streets with a collection of monochrome and futuristic multipurpose clothing. Based in the UK, Jan-Philipp Kosfeld presented a unisex line built for core functionality with concealed pockets in oversized metallic blazers, PVC duster coats adaptable to changing weather, and pre-crinkled trousers. With muted colour palettes and corn-rowed models, the collection achieved its goal of interlacing timeless elegance with Hip-Hop culture.

Shades of yellow from Canary to Lemon shone through collection ‘Jaune’ by German designer Annika Klaas, winner of the European Fashion Award FASH 2018. With a focus on knitwear processes and seamless technology, collage-like outfits created a deconstructed feel. With colour graded layers and see-through structures, the knitted fabrics emphasized experiments in textures. Beautiful colours in dreamy soft knits made the crowd swoon.

Japanese brand THE MONGOLIAN CHOPPSSS showcased a quirky unisex collection for SS19. The collection theme ‘Precious Love’ was expressed through positive messages such as ‘I am happy’ (in Japanese) and ‘Happy Sushi’ creating a fun feel. Camo print, oversized patch pockets, and long fluoro green socks made for carefree styling. A key look for men- a casual sweater featuring rainbow colour blocking paired with grey shorts. A youthful line disseminating fun or ‘TANOSII’ for all to see to close the night with colour and happiness.


Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images

For more information, please visit:

Vancouver Fashion Week

www.vanfashionweek.com

Instagram: @vanfashionweek

Twitter: @vanfashionweek

Facebook: Vancouver Fashion Week



Day 6 at Vancouver Fashion Week S/S19

Saturday, September 22nd, 2018 – Vancouver, BC – A real mix of design aesthetics for day 6 of Vancouver Fashion Week.

Shamsha Hashwani, a luxury contemporary womenswear designer from Pakistan, opened the evening with a tribute collection to her late mother ‘Shanaz’. Inspired heavily by merging tradition with modernity, the line featured an array of bejewelled silk gowns and jumpsuits in emerald green, deep fuschia, and royal blue. With an atelier in Karachi, the label showcased skilled intricate workmanship with 3D embellishments and cut-work appliqué. Beaded floor length sheer sleeves and masterpiece shawls stunned the crowd.

Local brand Studio Jason Siu presented new menswear collection ‘Ecdysis’ taking inspiration from the processes of an insect’s life. With refined tailoring, delicate butterfly prints on white shirts, and a reversible metallic raincoat hinting at the insect’s jewel tones, a cohesive theme was developed. A deconstructive concept was pushed with the use of a collared shirt hanging against the body with straps.


Oxygenated crimsons, rich dark blues, and bone colours from the human circulatory system made up the colour palette for Canadian designer Kirsten Ley’s conceptual new collection MITØSIS, about the division of self. Printwork of anatomy diagrams incorporating florals created visual intrigue, offset by sculpted leather silhouettes. Magnificent textile manipulations made for an artistic collection.


Moquo stormed the runway with wacky outrageous prints in vibrant colours. The French label designed by Manon Parisot brought a fun flare for SS19 featuring animal stripes, jungle leaves, abstract shapes and Aztec inspired patterns.

From Trench to Duster it was coats galore with Lorem Ipsum. Based in British Columbia, the brand added a level of sophisticated simplicity to proceedings with Jessica Lee’s take on classic outer layers. Featuring a variety of lengths in muted tones, tie up belts, tartan accents, asymmetrical hemlines, and double-breasted lapels, the collection did not disappoint.

Taiwanese label Loop Theory presented their thought-provoking collection of deconstructed pieces representing different corners of the world. Elizabeth Peng aimed to symbolize diversity with her panelled baby doll dresses and skirt sets by seamlessly stitching clashing prints of city/nature landscapes together. The designer pit strong and pastel colours against each other by pairing each look with tights in electric blue, shocking pink, and blood orange.

To end the night, Japanese women’s apparel brand eimy istoire, known for their mixed-materials and cutting-edge designs, presented a pretty pastel pink and grey collection with ruffles, tulle, and feathers. Feminine silhouettes were structured from peplum waists, drop shoulders, and voluminous skirting. Velvet, silk, and lace created texture. A serenely feminine concept for SS19.


Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images

For more information, please visit:

Vancouver Fashion Week

www.vanfashionweek.com

Instagram: @vanfashionweek

Twitter: @vanfashionweek

Facebook: Vancouver Fashion Week

Day 5 at Vancouver Fashion Week S/S19

Friday, September 21st, 2018 – Vancouver, BC - Friday night was a night of edgy, experimental, and sophisticated styles on the runway at Vancouver Fashion Week.

NOT DEAD YET started the shows with a twist on the grunge aesthetic, designer Adam Lin-Bungag’s signature. The 2018 Nancy Mak Award Winner, showcased oversized sleeves, raw edges, combat boots, hanging chains, and studs. Red and yellow plaid was contrasted with plain black and transparent PVC. Drawn letters spelt out SHAME on the side of sneakers, and printed words on graphic tees hinted to the theme ‘Eulogy'- the understanding that in order to move forward we must acknowledge, understand, and learn from our past.

B.C.’s Anelia Basson of Anelia Art debuted her ‘Explore the Journey’ collection for SS19. Each piece was a wearable work of art with unique tribal influences complemented by a simple topknot hairstyle with feathers and beaded accessories. Basson’s colour palette was bright and playful with detailed prints on UV safe and environmentally friendly fabrics. Each garment flowed with the model’s movement which was further highlighted with an interpretive dance that delighted VFW fashion-goers. From versatile dresses to fun swimwear, Basson’s pieces will be sure to instil confidence and capture the individuality of the wearer.

Belgium’s Maxime Edward’s ‘UCHRONISM’ collection combined elements of metallics in a display of sporty, theatrical, and edgy looks. With the use of black, silver, bronze, and flashes of teal, Edward finds strength and coexistence in the structured cuts of his pieces and austere aesthetics. Inspired by the vision of the harmonic evolution of the human species, Edward pushes the envelope with his garments in an evocative way; teetering on sobriety and fantasy with each piece prompted by an emboldened view of mankind.


Apparel Magazine, one of New Zealand’s premier fashion publications presented an exciting trio of designers for SS19. First, Christchurch’s Shannon Thompson of Out of Comfort displayed a collection with relaxed silhouettes and immense depth utilising earthy tones and functional accessories like hiking boots and bucket hats. Next up, Auckland’s Doris Lu depicted a feminine strength and confidence in her collection with Japanese-inspired elements, reimagined white dress shirts, and samurai-esq wrap jackets. Finally, Auckland’s Kate Fisher presented electrifying pieces that were gender non-conforming in their presentation. With a mixture of black, white, and red chiffon blouses, and metallic elements scattered throughout, Fisher demonstrated the versatility of her capsule collection. These three New Zealand designers showed their collective strength at Vancouver Fashion Week.

Designer Javier Giron for Spanish based brand JNORIG presented a new kind of ‘Complex Minimalism’ refreshing the idea of merging two opposite cultures; the simplicity of Amish lifestyle with the complexity of Indian Tribes. Graphic prints, designed in collaboration with Graphic Designer Barthelemy Vielle, lifted a heavily contrasted palette of black, white, and red. A modern deconstructive feel was expressed through structured jackets, hooded sweaters, and oversized knits with long hanging sleeves. A distinguished look for women- a red collared shirt worn with black ¾ length shorts and long black socks, topped with a black felt hat.

Class, elegance, and timelessness are three words to express the refined collection presented by Australian brand Lena Kasparian. ‘After 5’ featured formal wear and cocktail pieces for men and women in an oh so glamorous style. Deep rose pink silk and sequined gowns with couture detailing and luxurious fabrics set an opulent tone for womenswear. For men- chic grey and navy suits, beautifully tailored, were worn with crisp white shirts. A sophisticated collection.


Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images

For more information, please visit:

Vancouver Fashion Week

www.vanfashionweek.com

Instagram: @vanfashionweek

Twitter: @vanfashionweek

Facebook: Vancouver Fashion Week






Day 4 at Vancouver Fashion Week S/S19

Thursday, September 20th, 2018 – Vancouver, BC –Thursday marked an international day at Vancouver Fashion Week with designers featured from across the globe.

Kicking off the show, four talented students proudly represented NABA (Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti), an Italian education Academy focusing on art and design. First up was Anna Bonifazi, opening a dark collection with a provocative white evening dress paired with opera length gloves. Next, He Yan hit a playful note, showing structured vinyl suit jackets in an array of candy colours. Yeqi Tang followed with a striking display of artsy prints on flowy, oversized dresses. Gaoming Chen closed the show with an intriguing line of experimental pieces, contrasting the predominantly white palette with pops of cherry red buttons and deep blue piping. These emerging designers proved their impressive talents are a force to be reckoned with.

Elena Pignata of the Italian brand Ombradifoglia showcased a very personal line of avant-garde looks, styled with a rigorous femininity. An impressive volume of delicate fabrics in a surplus of patterns saturated the runway for the S/S19 season. Plaid trousers, culottes, and chinos paired with bold red tops, full maxi skirts topped with airy overcoats, and confidently striped pantsuits were abundant. The finalist of Project Runway Italy’s inaugural edition demonstrated great versatility with her mix-and-match line.

Italian designer Giulia Solda’ of Maatroom brought her fuss-free aesthetic to Vancouver with her newest collection, ‘Then Comes the Sun.’ Maatroom utilizes an obvious simplicity to showcase the high-quality Italian fabrics and attention to tradition in a monochromatic scheme of black and white. Flared jumpsuits, oversized button-ups, and a plethora of crisp white dresses in various silhouettes were both assured and inviting. Sleek low ponytails complimented the minimalist vibe with a reserved attitude that pervaded the runway.

Japanese brand thibaut presented ‘Annie Vibe,’ a collection of loungewear inspired by the white linens and posh dresses from the 1982 movie Annie. With a background in choreography, Meiko Ban epitomizes the balance of life: messy but clean, relaxed but anxious, rough yet still soft. Barefooted models wore loose knit pullovers, waffle knit leggings, and ribbed camisoles. A lingerie inspired teddy in white lace was styled over a disheveled button-up shirt. Delicate ruffles were a theme in a predominantly neutral colour palette, all coming together for a show that was charmingly sensual.

Mexican brand Kan by Paulina Hernandez showcased the swimwear collection ‘Temiqui’ full of colour and life, with inspiration taken from the Mexican ethnic group Huicholes, and the Wixárika culture and their art. Hot pink, cyan blue, and green graphic printed women’s bikinis and men’s swim shorts were paired with fringed hooded ponchos and striped coverups.

‘FOREVER CUBA’ the colourful collection from Miami based designer Yas Gonzalez, is a nostalgic glimpse into her childhood in Cuba - with printed fabrics featuring memories of great grandmother’s kitchen tiles, the family church, and parks where she played. A delightfully ostentatious collection with rich vibrant fabrics, peacock feathers and floral embellishments accentuating the female form. A green corseted bodice with voluminous skirt in bold blue and oranges took us right to Havana.

Erin Clare Bridal, from Australia, showcased the Eclipse collection, in a soft white palette with ivory and a range of nude tones. Unique laces embellished with feathers, flowers, leaves, stars and butterflies appeared like delicate paper cutouts on beautiful wedding gowns. Models with plaited updos wore feminine A-line silhouettes with accentuated waists and sheer sleeves. An exquisite and romantic collection.


Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images


For more information, please visit:

Vancouver Fashion Week

www.vanfashionweek.com

Instagram: @vanfashionweek

Twitter: @vanfashionweek

Facebook: Vancouver Fashion Week





Day 3 at Vancouver Fashion Week S/S19

Wednesday, September 19th, 2018 – Vancouver, BC – Wednesday was a night to highlight the local talents from Vancouver and Canada as a whole, complemented with a few from further afield.

Meghan Buckley of MGHN kicked off the night with ‘WHOOPSIE DAISY’, a collection inspired by creative imagination and childhood emotions. Building on MGHN’s characteristic clean lines and minimalism, the Vancouver designer took a more playful approach for the S/S19 season. Exuberant colours were tied together with silky bows, and almost-campy pom poms embellished clean white silhouettes, all of which were topped with soft felt berets. The result was a show that was equal parts cute and quirky.

Vancouver designer Wade Shapely of W/S brought New York punk to the runway. The VCAD graduate’s newest collection, ‘Dress to Kill’ pushed a rebellious vibe bringing together classic rock pieces with couture elegance. Drenched in edgy prints and bold textiles, the looks were complemented with heavy makeup and strappy stilettos. Leopard prints were topped with gold studded leather jackets. A metallic red top was paired with a zebra patterned pencil skirt, covered in PVC plastic. The showstopper: a long, dazzling beaded evening dress held together with a leather harness and choker.

Vancouver designer Casey Lamb of KSLAM transported the audience to a 1985 roller disco with ‘Vapour Wave’. The self-taught 21-year-old was inspired by 2000s internet memes, 80s art and 70s new wave music to create a collection that critiques modern consumerism and pop culture. A neon palette of both used and new fabrics was accented with car seat buckles, chains, and rainbow printed platform sneakers. Models wearing hot pink suits, royal blue rompers, and slinky green party dresses carried disco balls as handbags. Fusing elements from multiple decades, KSLAM’s vintage reworks bring a unique take to modern streetwear.

Jacqueline Au from Toronto showcased an art-to-wear collection ‘Cloud Forest’ inspired by a conservatory in Singapore and the complex nature of the mind in its hazy mixture of tangled ideas and thoughts. A gradient grey colour palette contrasted with navy, baby blue, and teal was used in soft structural textures, with wool, quilt, mesh, and fur. A key look: a high neck dress with uneven sleeve lengths and an organic shaped hemline. Metallic clasps caught the light, and ribbons, weaved wool strips, and string cords created visual intrigue.

Scottish brand imi presented ‘Reconstruct My Flesh’, a realisation, through clothing, of society’s obsession with physical self  ‘improvement’. Designer Imogen Evans uses deconstructed silhouettes, layering, and embroidery to portray this concept. Embroidered face coverings, hanging strips, and clever elements such as a triple hooded jumper, stacks of collars worn on the arms, and experiments with eyelets brought about an unusual twist.

ESMOD Dubai design graduate Manon Pradier, a menswear designer based in Shanghai, presented the ‘a.LIKE’ collection inspired by nature and architecture, recreating the repetition in both fields. A wearable collection of classic garments such as coats and jumpsuits has been modernized be reinventing their shape and incorporating a fresh selective colour palette with dark teal merged with grey. Graphic prints lifted the minimalist collection.

Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images

Day 2 at Vancouver Fashion Week S/S19

Tuesday, September 18th, 2018 – Vancouver, BC – Day 2 took us on a journey from Vancouver to Japan.

Four talented design students from LaSalle College Vancouver, debuted an impressive array of looks for SS19. Tying the designers together, the models were adorned with jet-black plastic turbans and chic sock boots. From Si-Man Cheung’s structured blue and cream two-piece ensembles, Nasrine Damroudi’s earthy tones and defined waists, Ya-Ting Chung’s elegantly rippled black chiffon blouses with emerald green accents, to Zhengyu Zhou’s edgy safety-pinned sheer pieces with statement typography, LaSalle College students displayed their collective and emerging talent for SS19 in full force.

‘Eat my shorts’, a playful unisex collection from local Vancouver designer Profanity By LillzKillz featured transparent vinyl pockets filled with toy cars, platform sneakers, video game prints, and bold bright colourways in vibrant yellow, tangerine orange, royal blue, and neon green. Old car parts including seatbelts, and seat leather are refurbished in garments nodding to the inspiration of a middle class family and their beat up car. A key look- a teal and tan brown leather patched two piece with contrast white straps, topped off with a car seat headrest.

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Malaysian designer FARAMAS collaborated with shoe brand Nottingheels to create an earthy feel for SS19. The colour palette for ‘Shades of Terracotta’ (the name of the collection) is inspired by the colours of the desert, multi-coloured rock formations, and the earth and soil at different seasons of the year. Wide leg cropped pants, a spaghetti strap maxi dress, and layered looks come in soft loose natural fabrics including Linen, Cotton, and Raw Silk. Custom-made shoes from Nottingheels came in beautiful colourways from burnt orange to cream in wedges and chunky heel styles; true fashion shoes with comfort included.

Denver designer Eve Jenkins of Parasite Eve captured fashion-goers imaginations in a world not unto similar to a dystopian fairytale through her opulent fashion collection. The mixture of silhouettes were bespoke and unique; complimented by their flora and fauna inspired elements and breathtaking headpieces designed by Andrew Flatland. The models took form as fallen angels, wonderland princesses, or nymphs of the forest with their generous plumishes, detailed beadwork, delicate lace, and Victorian elements evoking another worldly expression. Jenkins crafted a fantastical display with a dark, regal presence for SS19.

L.A. designer Shannon Ashford of Tom Foolery flaunted a SoCal revamp of a classic jumpsuit for SS19. Her designs were cinched at the front with a simple knot and featured a flowy slit up the thigh. The colour palette featured monochrome navies, creams, and greys with flashes of fun floral elements intermittently displayed throughout. The fabric was cut in clean lines and was made out of recycled plastic bottles in Haiti forming an environmentally responsible and ever-chic collection. Ashford’s models ended the show with an unapologetic demonstration of the jumpsuits functionality surprising SS19 attendees with the dropseat design of each piece made for the modern dresser. Ashford’s pieces were classic, yet daring with clever cuts and features manifesting in a striking show.

Fusion swimwear and resortwear from Peruvian brand Lima Rosa wowed the crowd with saturated colours and digital prints in women’s and men’s looks. The ‘Dreams of Coral’ collection is inspired by the nature of the vast ocean and its natural forms and species. Reflections of the ocean can be seen in prismatic contrasted colours of flora & fauna. Criss-cross strap design on high waisted bikini bottoms, details of crochet & embroidery, and beautifully soft floating coverups add to the summer vibe, accessorised with tinted sunnies and metallic jewellery. Designer Carolina Rosamedina even utilises innovative textiles with UV and moisture capsules, perfect for the beach.

Kaori Kato from Japan showcased coloured sculptural dresses incorporating fine paper folding. A true visual artist, Kato uses a number of complex geometric forms to create unique patterns that are originally inspired from natural phenomena such as waterfalls, northern lights, snowflakes, and geysers. Stunning dresses in an origami style show how paper can be pushed to the limit, creating true wearable pieces of art!

Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images

Opening night at Vancouver Fashion Week S/S19

Monday, September 17th, 2018 – Vancouver, BC – Opening Gala night at Vancouver Art Gallery’s šxʷƛ̓ənəq Xwtl’e7énḵ Square (formerly Vancouver Art Gallery’s North Plaza/ Georgia Plaza) marked a sensational evening of runway shows for Vancouver Fashion Week.

First up, the Originator Awards were announced to celebrate key people who have helped grow the Vancouver fashion industry. From Stylists to Retailers, Teachers to Make-up Artists, all manner of skills and professions were commended. Details can be found here.

On the first night of SS19, attendees were privy to the Designer Preview. The sampling was eclectic and innovative with a range of designers on full display. From ethereal and feminine silhouettes, playful blush pink structured dresses with palm prints, to gothic, veiled Spanish gowns, the Designer Preview had a bit of everything. With such varied pieces, intrigue and excitement were felt throughout the crowd with anticipation bubbling around collections yet to come throughout the week.

Vietnamese Designer Phuong My began her SS19 show with the ringing resonance of dulcet bells, thus, setting a harmonious tone to her collection. With an exquisite blend of sumptuous silks and a subdued colour scheme, My’s polished models took the runway with poise to kick off Vancouver Fashion Week’s first full collection. The palette was filled with dusty baby blues and reds, with dashes of periwinkle and navy throughout. My took a modern take on classic silhouettes that accentuate the female form with tapered peplum waistlines, exquisitely tailored silk folds, and varied demure necklines. An elegant feminine strength is exuded throughout.

6-D Sebastian Masuda presented ‘Reboot the Kawaii’, featuring acidic candy colours, synthetic fabrics, faux fur, and an excess of embellishments. Digital printed leggings, biker jackets, and a tulle skirt layered with transparent PVC, gave a youthful and casual feel in neon colours. Japanese artist, Masuda Sebastian, questions “what is fashion?” with a multicoloured fur ensemble with huge towering headpiece; a dramatic look. Harnesses, lace-up belts, and fur clutch bags accessorize the collection. A men’s outfit featuring a hot pink ‘Bijou jacket’, with glistening pins on the lapel, worn with knee-length shorts, gives a fresh look for the SS19 season.

For Vancouver Fashion Week, opening night was full of delights.



Photos by Arun Nevader for Getty Images

Ozlana presented by Global Fashion Collective

Australian brand Ozlana presented their much-anticipated new collection DREAM STILL____ at New York Fashion Week. An edgy yet romantic take on street couture, the new collection highlighted their experimental textiles, quality fabrics, and sustainable artisan techniques.

Photo By Jonathan Lapada

The mood at the runway was serene, with a naturalistic set design featuring dried wildflowers and pampas grass, soft fur overlays, and lightweight cloud props hanging from the air, illuminated in soft hues. The sound of chirping birds and projected moving scenes of waves and stars created an immersive experience, as if within nature, in the heart of midtown New York.

 

DREAM STILL____ translates a tale of nostalgia as a woman builds her life in the city, recalling her beautiful countryside youth, and lapsing into a sweet recollection of what has been. Presenting an All Seasons collection, and subverting the traditional fashion calendar, OZLANA brings a new moment to their audience, combining highly wearable, practical fashion with an idealistic, dreamy mood. 

Photo By Jonathan Lapada

Designer Hannah Kim has created a casual and lux style with light feminine dresses in satin and chiffons, leather bomber jackets, and coloured fur gilets.

Photo By Nick Merzetti

DREAM STILL____ is a carefully developed collection, flowing effortlessly through a series of colourways transitioning from pretty pinks, baby blues and beiges, to black. Looks were layered, showing combinations of pieces.

Photo By Jonathan Lapada

A strawberry motif embroidered on a long length knitted cardigan worn with a cherry print dress was accented by a red handbag and red sunnies for a cute look.

Photo By Jonathan Lapada

A floral print pink dress with ruffled hem and cuffs oozed femininity.

 

Photo By Jonathan Lapada

Glints of metallic embellishments lifted the soft pastel palette, with beaded embroidery, delicate hanging eyeglass chains, and silver heels. Fun accessories gave a youthful feel, with mini handbags, complete with fur trimmed handles - a hint of the classic Ozlana aesthetic.

Photo By Byeongcheol Jo

Shoe options included clean white platform sneakers worn with transparent sheer socks, and pale pink gold buckled mules lined with fur.

Photo by Nick Merzetti

Models were styled with a certain girlishness, with floral face tattoos and textured teased hair in high ponytails.

 

Photo By Jonathan Lapada

The grand finale featured every model returning to the runway sporting a fur parka, Ozlana’s signature item. Plush fur-lined hoods in a multitude of colourways gave the wearer an expression of individual personality. So cozy, so covetable!

 

Photo By Nick Merzetti

Dreamy romantic undertones came through a modern, youthful, wearable collection where traditional Spring/Summer & Autumn/Winter looks are effortlessly merged.

 

www.ozlana.com

@ozlana_official

About Global Fashion Collective (GFC)

Global Fashion Collective is a platform supporting creative designers from all around the world. The collective produces runway showcases in different fashion capitals with the aim to accelerate the designer’s global development, increase their international media visibility, and open new markets. By presenting its designers in front of international media and buyers globally, Global Fashion Collective is an expansion of Vancouver Fashion Week.

 

To learn more:

www.globalfashioncollective.com

Instagram: @globalfashioncollective

Q & A with fashion brand Maxime EDWARD

MM: Can you introduce your brand and yourself in a few sentences?

My name is Maxime Edward, I'm a Belgian, I originally came from the Philippines. My brand reflects slightly austere esthetics, can be said to be a touch theatrical with structured cuts and dynamic looks for men and women while looking for moderation between sobriety and fantasy. All this whilst hoping to achieve a ‘high fashion’


MM: Can you describe your creative process?

Everything is spontaneous. My creative process depends on the mood of the day. I like to sketch in the beginning, to give me a direction, but at the end it becomes totally different. It's like an evolution. And all the ideas are growing up step by step. I do need pressure to engage into a process.    

Sometimes all my collection starts from a color, a texture, a fabric. 

By the way, everything is made by myself. Patterns, cutting, sewing.

 

MM: Where do you find inspiration in your day-to-day life?

Everywhere; Art, architecture, observation of people and details of the environments all around me, photography, iconography, dreams, video game, movie, figure,…   


MM: What kind of questions do you ask yourself when you begin creating a collection?

Do I have time?  Whatever, I'll do it.



MM: How has your work evolved since you began your own label?

My label exists since this year, but I create capsules collections since I was graduated in 2014 from my fashion school. I did internships: Maison Natan in Beglium (the royal family's designer), and Alexandre Vauthier Haute couture in Paris.

At the beginning I only worked on women designs. Then my best friend asked me to create for him a fur coat and i got good feelings with menswear. My style became more sportswear and street, even for women, but I kept all the references and identities from my experience and attraction of haute couture looks.



MM: How do you find working as a designer in Belgium? Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? Do you feel connected to your home?

Belgium is a small country and we are a lot of designers. It's pretty hard to find his own place.

Culture in Belgium is about "Art nouveau"  architectural style, surrealism and minimalism. I don’t want to stay confined to my home culture but I'm trying to be open-minded to the rest of the world. 

 

MM: What sparked your interest in fashion design?

I'm originally interested in producing and directing movies but when I was 15 I met the "Devil wears Prada" at the movie theater. It was like a revelation but not in a serious way. After getting some information, I decided to start fashion studies.    



MM: How did you learn the business of fashion?

Learning Business? By myself. I'm only into designs and creation. The business is a complicated part for me but I do my best to understand how the fashion industry works.  


MM: What is your favourite part of being a designer? What drives you to design?

It’s a passion. I like all the steps of my job, even pressure and white nights. But I really like the pride of being able to present something that I created with my hands.


MM: What is the inspiration behind your S/S19 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week?


The collection " UCHRONISM" is inspired by a vision of the Human species evolving in a total harmonic way of life. Not as an idyllic future but as an alternative reality of the present day.  Harmony is all about mixity, eclecticism , coexistence, acceptance and balance between economy, ecology, biodiversity, technology, beliefs, languages, esthetics, beauty, … Key word is universality. 

The collection is not about duality, but coexistence. A straight line and a curve; bright and darkness; natural and technical; soft and textured;  sport and classic are mixed.

 

Q & A with fashion brand Wanli

MM: Can you introduce your brand and yourself in a few sentences?

My brand name is Wanli, that means we would design for any shapes and any age, let them make pretty and fashionable.

For me , I am a pretty young lady in our age, I am 63 years old, but I am fashionable, classic, lively and cheerful, that really like my design’s style.


MM: Can you describe your creative process?

I am a modeling teacher for 20 years, everytime I help the designer to complete the show , I always catch sight of the design that how can make it better. So I get mind to make the garments by myself.


MM: Where do you find inspiration in your day-to-day life?

Yes, more in my modeling teacher job. And apart of from my Royal family.



MM: What kind of questions do you ask yourself when you begin creating a collection?

Is that a collection suits for the common people? Is that practical?

MM: How has your work evolved since you began your own label?

No, that is since I taught modeling class. Many students wanted to wear better garments.

MM: How do you find working as a designer? Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? Do you feel connected to your home?

I was born in Beijing, my royal family’s culture/ Beijing as a capital of China that surroundings affected my design aesthetic. My design often connected to my hometown.

MM: What sparked your interest in fashion design?

I helped many shows to choose the model, therefore I could know how standard of professional design , I feel I would do well also.

MM: How did you learn the business of fashion?

From many business shows and events.

MM: What is your favourite part of being a designer? What drives you to design?

Designer like an artist, that could make the garments like an artwork. And kind like this artworks people can wear it to anywhere, to show anybody, to have sparked people good feeling, I think this is cool.

For my design that can make people looks nicer whether they are shape good or whatever.

MM: What is the inspiration behind your S/S19 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week?

National extraction  and royal culture in Beijing. National extraction, the inspiration is from traditional Chinese dramatic culture patterns. The color of the garments is red for the royal Chinese.

Thank you for telling us about your journey into fashion design. We can't wait to see Wanli show at Vancouver Fashion Week for the SS19 season.

Check Wanli ‘s website http://wanli.multimediapress.cn/.

GLOBAL FASHION COLLECTIVE II

For the GFC II presentation, modern, sculptural and avant-garde collections featuring powerful feminine silhouettes blurred the line between haute couture and ready-to-wear fashion.

 

Photo By Arun Nevader

First up, Chinese brand XY wowed the audience with a child model full of personality walking the runway wearing a towering traditional silver headdress. Inspired by ethnic Chinese cultures with a focus on the Miao people, designer Han Zhang fuses tradition with modernity using Chinese embroidery and contemporary fashion silhouettes. A selective palette of black, accent red, and green reigns throughout in sumptuous silks and textured tulle.

Photo By Arun Nevader

An emerald coloured mid-length silk dress, with fitted waist and princess-line bodice featured a beautiful contrast red off-shoulder design.

Photo By Arun Nevader

A dramatic silhouette was created with a model wearing large black angel wings.

 

Photo By Arun Nevader

Canadian designer Kirsten Ley’s refined artistic approach to design shone through her new collection MITØSIS, about the division of self; a conscious choice to leave one version in the past while moving forward with the new version. Oxygenated crimsons, rich dark blues, and bone colours from the human circulatory system are paired with unusual and beautiful graphic printwork of anatomy diagrams incorporating florals.

Photo By Arun Nevader

A stand out look- a two piece in crimson leather with sculptured shoulders and high neckline, complete with white voluminous fur sleeve coverings. Hand-gathered chiffon and billowing silks build the story.

                                                                                                                            

Resort collection TERRA by American designer Carlton Jones celebrates the cross pollination of global terrains taking inspiration from fresh Eastern silhouettes.

Photo By Arun Nevader

Lightweight breezy natural fibres are layered over one another and feature beautiful printwork morphing abstract vertebrae into chic animal print, reminiscent of African safari.

Photo By Arun Nevader

Sparkling shiny fabrics caught the light on the runway, with sequins shimmering in earthy tones of sand, referencing glamorous desert nights.

A clean crisp white jumpsuit with long open flowing asymmetric sleeve created a sophisticated chic look.

 

 

About Global Fashion Collective (GFC)

Global Fashion Collective is a platform supporting creative designers from all around the world. The collective produces runway showcases in different fashion capitals with the aim to accelerate the designer’s global development, increase their international media visibility, and open new markets. By presenting its designers in front of international media and buyers globally, Global Fashion Collective is an expansion of Vancouver Fashion Week.

 

To learn more:

www.globalfashioncollective.com  

Instagram: @globalfashioncollective

Q & A with fashion brand 6-D Sebastian Masuda

MM: Can you introduce your brand and yourself in a few sentences?

「6-D Sebastian Masuda」 is the new fashion brand which artist, Masuda Sebastian, launched. The name derives from Six dimension and Six sense. This time I would like to display again what I would like to express through fashion by exhibiting the items of the shop "6% DOKIDOKI" that I opened at Harajuku in Tokyo when I was 25 years old.

 

MM: Can you describe your creative process?

First of all, I document messages that I would like to express when I create pieces. This is my process of creation which I shape keywords that I picked visually.

 

MM: Where do you find inspiration in your day-to-day life?

I get inspirations that is based on the news (global situation and global issues) which is currently happening, and what do we need for this generation?

 

MM: What kind of questions do you ask yourself when you begin creating a collection?

 Collection theme of this time is ”Reboot the Kawaii”. I made a collection based on the idea that what is fashion as protecting the spirits of "Kawaii" which is the context of my creation. It is also an attempt to restart what was sent to the world as a result of my work again with my own hand.


MM: How has your work evolved since you began your own label?

Till now I had a store as existence to receive and transmit the flow and energy which was born from the street in Tokyo, but I switched to capture fashion as "art as a body "  by setting up a fashion brand with my name again.

 

MM: How do you find working as a designer in Japan? Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? Do you feel connected to your home?

Since I started "6% DOKIDOKI" in 1995, my career as a fashion designer started. A feeling of air atmosphere  that allows others to live freely in the city of Harajuku in Tokyo, and street fashion that is unprecedented in the world.It is a fundamental indispensable element to create my pieces(art of production).

 

MM: What sparked your interest in fashion design?

The most interesting part is material. My art work creates colors using materials that exist in the world that I have found in various clothing and toy markets in the world. However, I decide on the main material that matches the theme in fashion design and start designing to do. We have just launched the brand, but we will try to create that material itself and develop new materials in the future as well.

MM: How did you learn the business of fashion?

I started my store (6% DOKIDOKI) as a place of expression, I was unknowing at first. For the first time in terms of shop management, I learnt fashion business and management by practice through various experiences with crossover intersecting streets.


MM: What is your favourite part of being a designer? What drives you to design?

 「Design」 is visualizing messages for me.  It is my job to design what kind of place someone goes with their clothes, what kind of stimulation it gives them around, and someone's consciousness can be changed by communications from the clothes as my point of origin.



MM: What is the inspiration behind your S/S19 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week?

This collection has the purpose of restarting the image and recognition of the current state of "Kawaii" that is going to be consumed as a surface trend by third party intervention. The Japanese culture "Kawaii" which is the context of my work often precedes superficial images such as ,gaudiness, bizarre and childishness, and the problems of "diversity" and "individuality" recently taken. It is not well known that you have big hints to unravel the word. I define Kawaii = my microcosm. A strong will to protect your favorite things that everyone does not want to disturb, and a mind to allow other people 's microcosm (personality),What I express this time is to protect faith as the basis of such "Kawaii"

Thank you 6-D Sebastian Masuda for telling us about your brand. We can't wait to see your show at Vancouver Fashion Week for the SS19 season.

Follow 6-D Sebastian Masuda on Instagram @6d_tokyo and check out the website.

GLOBAL FASHION COLLECTIVE I

A group show with a real mix of design aesthetics, GFC I designers brought their vibrant and eccentric collections to the runway by taking exaggerated shapes and unique fabrics to the next level.

Photo By Arun Nevader

Profanity By LillzKillz showcased a playful unisex collection ‘Eat my shorts’, with transparent vinyl pockets filled with toy cars, platform sneakers, video game prints, and bold bright colourways in vibrant yellow, tangerine orange, royal blue, and neon green. Old car parts including seatbelts, and seat leather are refurbished in garments nodding to the inspiration of a middle class family and their beat up car.

Photo By Arun Nevader

A key look for this Canadian designer featured a teal and tan brown leather patched two piece with contrast white straps, topped off with a car seat headrest.

 

Photo By Arun Nevader

Plain black with contrast red and yellow plaid featured next for Canadian designer Adam Lin-Bungag, winner of the 2018 Nancy Mak Award. The NOT DEAD YET signature grunge aesthetic was expressed through oversized sleeves, raw edges, Dr Martens, hanging chains, and studs.

Drawn letters spell out SHAME on the side of sneakers, and printed words on graphic tees hint at the theme ‘Eulogy’- the understanding that in order to move forward we must acknowledge, understand, and learn from our past.

Photo By Arun Nevader

Highlights included a transparent PVC layer overcoat lined with over a red plaid jacket, and white crinkled pants with red plaid strips tied around leg.

 

Photo By Arun Nevader

Rainbow shaved ice, tropical fruits, and flowers have inspired the 'VaCaTioN in Hawaii' collection by Japanese designer Nozomi Kuwahara for the SS19 season. Nozomi uses vivid colours, soft textured fabrics such as cotton Seersucker, and even SPF50+ fabrics to experiment with the summer theme.

Photo By Arun Nevader

Models walked in twos in matching combos; a lemon lime green short-sleeved button-up shirt dress was complemented with a bandeau/maxi skirt look with ribbon fastenings. Holiday destination name ‘Waikiki’ is embroidered on a motif of sunbathers on select pieces, and plastic accessories derived from beach toys and swimming goggles complete the looks.

 

Photo By Arun Nevader

German designer Kim Tiziana Rottmüller leads us through a spiritual story for collection ‘Oblivion’, taking inspiration from a seductive witch, a symbol for our transcendental self and inner magical power. Lilac, the colour for spirituality brings light into the collection whereas black is used to submit the unknown, mysterious darkness. Experiments with volume are revealed through oversized hoods and layers of ruffles.

Photo By Arun Nevader

A stand out look - a candy pink oversized woolen jumper embellished with mysterious tarot cards that weave in and out of the knit. 

 

About Global Fashion Collective (GFC)

Global Fashion Collective is a platform supporting creative designers from all around the world. The collective produces runway showcases in different fashion capitals with the aim to accelerate the designer’s global development, increase their international media visibility, and open new markets. By presenting its designers in front of international media and buyers globally, Global Fashion Collective is an expansion of Vancouver Fashion Week.

 

 

To learn more:

www.globalfashioncollective.com

 

Instagram: @globalfashioncollective

Q & A with fashion brand phuong my


MM: Can you introduce your brand and yourself in a few sentences?


PHUONG MY is a luxury line of designer Phuong My. Each season, PHUONG MY presents new collection dedicated to separate themes honoring the Oriental beauty of Asian women - who are known for their talent, enthusiasm, feminine beauty, subtlety but also strong will. Designer Phuong My is well-known for her signature silhouette featuring hour glass, cocoon shape in the lower parts of dresses that highlight the beauty of women’s shape. Luxury materials are hand -selected from prestigious textile mills in HongKong, Tokyo, Milan and Paris to ensure the highest quality and perfection.


MM: Can you describe your creative process? Where do you find inspiration in your day-to-day life?


Imagining women as a canvas and their deeply-rooted characteristics as water colors, Phuong My painted women by their femininity, delicacy and charm. These influences came from her childhood memories living in the gracious life of grandmother and mother. She was taught to exemplify perfect etiquette in every occasion; to dress and carry herself with dignity; and to speak eloquently in conversation. She grew up to become a woman of grace. When it comes to evening dresses and formal gowns, Phuong My understands essential elements that make women shine in her special moments. She draws inspirations from graceful women around her to create designs that exude the hidden charm of women.


The signature silhouettes of Phuong My are wasp waist that accentuates women’s hour glass figure with cocoon shape in the lower parts of dresses. This concept is inspired by the beliefs and ideologies of beauty in the East world; women should have a small waist and a back that is as smooth as pearls. Mastering the language of fashion design, Phuong My is a true artist; she visualises her signature silhouettes that help sculpt the body of women in unique artistic forms and exquisite shapes that describe both soft and strong side of women.


An infinite quest of perfection is reflected in Phuong My’s attention to details throughout her designs.


With flowers as symbols of feminine beauty, dresses are adorned with flower-inspired details to give intricate touches. This appears in collars as well as decorative details made by satin, beads, Swarovski crystals or feathers. There are more than 70 artisans from famous fashion studios were hand-selected by Phuong My to work on specific pattern design.

MM: What kind of questions do you ask yourself when you begin creating a collection?


What does the PHUONG MY women like to wear/ see this season. I belive each collection we are telling a story, a concept behind the brand. At the end of the day, our customers come to us to buy a lifestyle, a story, not just a piece of clothings.


MM: How has your work evolved since you began your own label?


I understand more of my customers, of who will wear the designs I draw, of who they are and what they look for. The work reflect the women of PHUONG MY brand.

MM: How do you find working as a designer in Vietnam? Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? Do you feel connected to your home?

I travel very often and do not stay in one place. I believe today world is global and connected. To be a designer in Vietnam is the same as being a designer anywhere else in the world. You get access to the same information, the same resources. However, my designs are deeply influenced by the Asian Culture –the Oriental beauty.

MM: What sparked your interest in fashion design?


Our greatest inspiration comes from the exquisite virtue of Asian women, who are at the same time fervent and feminine, bold and delicate. Behind their dainty grace, lies brilliant compassion and admirable strength. With beautiful, striking silhouettes clothed in the most exclusive luxury fabrics, designs of Phuong My embrace the feminine figure of the Orient.


MM: How did you learn the business of fashion?


By being in it, be a part of it everyday.


MM: What is your favourite part of being a designer? What drives you to design?


To have a fashion company and to be able to sustain the company, 90% of the time I must learn how to do business, how to balance number, finance, manage people, production, etc. Only 10% of the time I get to truly be a designer and design. It is still my favorite part of the job. When I get to design, I truly am happy and live in that moment.


MM: What is the inspiration behind your S/S19 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week?


This season, we take inspiration from sounds and color. The contrast between the smallest sound to the deepest, the slow note to the fast emotional beat. The solid dark color with a hint of light. We called this collection Sonorous.

Follow Phuong My on Instagram @phuong_my and check out the website here.







Q & A with fashion brand Shamsha Hashwani

MM: Can you introduce your brand and yourself in a few sentences?

Shamsha Hashwani epitomizes the essence of the powerful, contemporary and sophisticated woman who is deeply inspired by tradition, I believe creating an inspirational fusion buoyed by versatility and a timeless elegance that speaks about my identity and who I am as a creator.

 

MM: Can you describe your creative process?

I am a very hands-on person; I like to feel and play with different textures and colours of fabric and material. Based on my emotions, my mood and the inspirations I have in mind, I set the tone for the design. Once I have a feel of what I want to create, I work with my team on the illustrations. When the illustrations are complete, we move to the mannequin for placements and an overall look. The next step is making a prototype. After the prototype is finalized, given that the required changes on the design piece are made, we begin the production process (dyeing, embroidery/embellishments, cutting and stitching). Every step is handcrafted.

 

MM: Where do you find inspiration in your day-to-day life?

Because of my passion to create, I am constantly (many times subconsciously) taking inspiration from my every day life activities. Going to the movies and being inspired by some of the landscapes shown on screen. Visiting the mosque and feeling inspired by the marble designs on the floor, or the architecture on the walls.

 

MM: What kind of questions do you ask yourself when you begin creating a collection?

The questions that I think are important and that I ask myself when I begin creating a collection are: How will my pieces look on a range of my clientele? Young and mature women. Will they physically feel comfortable with the silhouettes and the handcrafted workmanship? How wearable is it? How versatile are my designs? Are my designs in sync with the current season?

 

MM: How has your work evolved since you began your own label?

The first few Shamsha Hashwani designs were made in my home and as demand outpaced production, the team of only a few traditional artisans — beaders, embroiders, tailors— became a strong team of 150, that continue to create authentic handcrafted products in the Shamsha Hashwani Atelier located in Karachi. From offering one line of pret wear when I began working from home, I now offer a range of products and designs, which includes formals, bridals, shawls and couture pieces. I have showcased my bridal collections at fashion shows in Pakistan and Bangladesh, held numerous national and international exhibitions, as well as presented pop-up shops with my ready-to-wear lines.

 

MM: How do you find working as a designer in Pakistan? Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? Do you feel connected to your home?

I could not be happier working as a designer, working on what I love everyday in Pakistan. My work has empowered me, as a woman, a mom, an individual. When I see women of all ages who appreciate my work, feel confident and beautiful in my attire, that gives me happiness. I have received an immense amount of support from my family, friends and my team of employees. Knowing I have a great support system, gives me more confidence and belief in myself and my work. I am very much connected to Pakistan and its culture – and I incorporate my learnings and my perspective of the culture in my work.

 

MM: What sparked your interest in fashion design?

Since my childhood I loved to dress up. Even among my siblings I was often called the “fashionista” or the “stylist” who loved fashion. However, I never pursued anything until much later. I got married, moved to Pakistan, had kids and that was my focus, my world. Once my kids went off to university, I had more time on my hands and then I began to wonder, what if? What if I tested the market and introduced a line of my own? Without much hesitation and lots of enthusiasm I went for it!

 

 

MM: How did you learn the business of fashion?

I never studied fashion, nor did I have any prior experience in the fashion industry. I have always been inspired and passionate about fashion. I am self taught, and through experiences have learned and grown both personally and professionally.

 

MM: What is your favourite part of being a designer? What drives you to design?

Passion. Emotions. Challenges. Foremost, my passion for creating is what motivates me to design. Designing is my happy place. For me and for all kinds of artists around the world, art is driven by emotions. My emotions are also very much depicted in my work from the colours I choose, to the types of work and detailing I incorporate. When I create, I feel grounded, I feel like that is my outlet and my way of portraying who I am to the world - my emotions, my personality, my learnings, my perspectives. Through creating, I have learned a lot about myself, who I am and who I strive to be.

 

MM: What is the inspiration behind your S/S19 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week?

This collection is very close to my heart, as the collection ‘Shanaz’ is a tribute to my late-mother. Shanaz is a collection showcasing easy to wear, versatile, durable and quality pieces. I have incorporated the colours - green and red, to symbolize Bangladesh my hometown, and green and white, to symbolize Pakistan where I moved to after marriage. Although moving away from home was difficult, it was my mother’s support, teachings and love that taught me how to adapt to a new environment, embrace the culture, build my own nest and make it my own. Most importantly, I have learned to stay true to myself, who I am, and my roots. It is these values that I have taken inspiration from and incorporated into my collection. This will be my debut on a new platform, a new audience and a new culture. My silhouettes are versatile, my  handcrafted workmanship and design concepts are a personification of my mother’s lessons and my love for her. My mother was an artist; I have taken inspiration from some of her paintings depicting beautiful flowers, hence, my designs are specifically focused on floral embroidery. This is my tribute to Shanaz, my memories of her and my never ending love for her.

 

Thank you Shamsha Hashwani for telling us about your journey into fashion design. We can't wait to see your show at Vancouver Fashion Week for the SS19 season.

Follow Shamsha Hashwani on Instagram @shamshahashwani and check out the website here.

Q & A with fashion brand THE MONGOLIANCHOPPSSS

MM: Can you introduce your brand and yourself in a few sentences? 

We are operating THE MONGOLIANCHOPPSSS by 2 designers, KIMIHIKO ANDO & KENTA YAMAMOTO. We started the production of ZINE in 2011, then we officially began the dressmaking with seasons theme from 2014. Our design is based on the  expressing our impressions 「Having fun」 with the” pride of being Japanese”.

 

MM: Can you describe your creative process?

We normally starts the process of dressmaking from small talks. Images of dressmaking that we would like to make next is coming up with talking so many random things. We reconcile those images into one image, seeking words for next seasons, then we make collections which is based on the words at the end.

 

MM: Where do you find inspiration in your day-to-day life?

We are inspired by 「spontaneous affairs in a daily life」 such as commuter trains and small talks, getting inspirations except for fashion stuff happens a lot to us. When it comes to our designs, we get inspirations by used clothes many times. We look around thrift shops in the U.S. and Japanese recycle shops in japan periodically in order to look for another stimulus.

 

MM: What kind of questions do you ask yourself when you begin creating a collection?

When we start making collections, we sometimes ask to myself whether 「Are we actually having fun」 during productions, so our concept for collection is we can’t entertain other people, if we don’t enjoy it on our own.

 

MM: How has your work evolved since you began your own label?

We don’t evolve, but our passion is swelling up in progress.

 

MM: How do you find working as a designer in Japan? Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? Do you feel connected to your home?

We were born in Japan and living as Japanese, so we don’t think any specific or special things as designers  who active in Japan.

 

MM: What sparked your interest in fashion design?

Passion.

 

MM: How did you learn the business of fashion?

Both of us graduated at the apparel academy. Even though we had experienced as shop clerks, we established our brand with no idea about branding. We are getting helped by a variety of people,  managing our brand and speculating ideas day by day on our own so as to keep our operation appropriately.

 

MM: What is your favourite part of being a designer? What drives you to design?

We put our heart and feelings as a design of clothes and we can get empathy and opinions from those who wear them and we can do it indirectly.

Fashion has the opportunity to be touched by everyone, it is the privilege of the designer that is involved in it, I think that it will lead to rewarding as well.

 

MM: What is the inspiration behind your S/S19 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week?

It is a personal part of Japanese people.

For example, a humble posture and a serious posture. . .

 

Thank you for telling us about your journey into fashion design. We can't wait to see THE MONGOLIANCHOPPSSS show at Vancouver Fashion Week for the SS19 season.

Follow THE MONGOLIANCHOPPSSS on Instagram @themongolianchoppsss and check out the website http://themongolianchoppsss.com/.

Q & A with fashion brand Yas Gonzalez

MM: Can you introduce your brand and yourself in a few sentences?

The name of my brand is Yas Gonzalez (my name). My collections are a reflection of my travels, experiences, my love of art and music. My custom pieces are a reflection of my client’s wishes made exclusively for them.

 

MM: Can you describe your creative process? 

I draw my inspiration from many different things. Predominately, I am inspired by culture, and people. When something touches me, I immediately start sketching. I transfer the idea to paper and that’s how I begin.

MM: Where do you find inspiration in your day-to-day life? 

I am a people-person. People move me; their voices, their stories, their adventures. My family and friends inspire me, my son, my peers. I take from that on a daily basis and it fuels me to create based on emotion. Similar to how a painter or writer create- it’s from real life for me.

MM: What kind of questions do you ask yourself when you begin creating a collection? 

What does this evoke? Is this going to stir any emotion? Will this make someone feel something? Be it happy, nostalgic, sexy, fashion is expression.

MM: How has your work evolved since you began your own label? 

My work has evolved as I have evolved. With my personal growth and travels to the experience I have gained through the years learning and constantly honing my craft. I am never afraid to listen or to learn. That has helped me grow as a designer.

MM: How do you find working as a designer in the US? 

I am fortunate to live out my dream ‘job’ in a country that allows me so. I have been afforded incredible opportunities and I am very grateful for that. 

Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? 

Absolutely! I live in a place that people all over the globe come to visit, for vacation. I am surrounded by diversity, beauty, beaches, palm trees. It’s impossible for me not to be inspired by my surroundings daily. 

Do you feel connected to your home? 

The old adage is forever true: “home is where the heart is”. I love Miami, it’s an incredible place. But my beginnings, my roots I can never forget. By bringing my early memories to life, it’s a way for me to pay homage to “home”.

MM: What sparked your interest in fashion design? 

I was attracted to fashion from an early age. The exciting part was learning how to create my own pieces, channel the inspiration. 

 

MM: How did you learn the business of fashion?

I went to the Miami University of Art & Design and completely submersed myself into the industry from an early age.

MM: What is your favourite part of being a designer? 

My favorite part is seeing someone happy wearing something I created. 

What drives you to design? 

I am fueled by creativity. I need to channel the creativity I feel I was blessed with.  

MM: What is the inspiration behind your S/S19 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week? 

This collection was inspired by things that impacted me, places that influenced me as a young girl. I went back to my home country and what I “saw”, what I “relived’ is now wearable via this collection that’s a cheerful, and inspirational showcase of color.

Thank you YAS GONZALEZ for sharing your fabulous collection. We can't wait to see your show at Vancouver Fashion Week for the SS19 season.

Follow YAS GONZALEZ on Instagram @YAS GONZALEZOFFICIAL and check out the website here.