Spotted from the Backseat: P&G Beauty & Grooming Awards 2012 Edition

Yours truly with presenters Glen Baxter and Hans Koechling and host Rob Lowe

On November 19, the 2012 edition of the P&G Beauty & Grooming Awards were held at The Carlu in Toronto. Hosted by the extremely handsome actor and Brat Pack member Rob Lowe, the Awards brought together the biggest names in the Canadian beauty, grooming and fashion industries to honour the year’s best print and online content in 19 categories.

Stacey McKenzie and Jully Black

Assisting Lowe (who was kissed on by all the ladies who graced the stage and was a good sport about it) in presenting the Tiffany & Co. crystal trophies were familiar faces like the iconic Jeanne Beker, Greta Constantine-clad singer Jully Black, supermodel Stacey McKenzie and boxer Mary Spencer.

And the winners are…

1. Best Art Direction: Tanya Watt, FLARE
2. Best New Face: Jenna Earle, Next Models
3. Best Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Trend/Profile (English): Adriana Ermter; FLARE, Back by Popular Demand
4. Best Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Trend/Profile (French): Sophie St-Laurent; Châtelaine, BB La crème a tout faire
5. Best Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Scientific/Technical (English): Michelle Villett; FLARE, Best Beauty Innovations of 2011
6. Best Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Scientific/Technical (French): Micheline Lortie; Châtelaine, La nature en pot
7. Best Beauty Editor of a Magazine: Lesa Hannah; FASHION Magazine
8. Best Male Grooming Feature: Greg Hudson; Sharp Magazine, The Sharp Guide to Grooming: Stepping it Up
9. Hair Stylist of the Year: Justin German
10. Best Fashion Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (English): Sarah Nicole Prickett; FASHION Magazine, Bro Code
11. Best Fashion Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (French): Elsa Vecchi; Dress to Kill, Spécial Design: Rad Hourani
12. Best Fashion Editor of a Magazine: George Antonopoulos, FASHION Magazine
13. Best Male Fashion Feature: Yang Goh; Sharp Magazine, Style Manual
14. Best Beauty or Fashion Blog (English): Sharon Ng Hayes; The Backseat Stylers
15. Best Beauty or Fashion Blog (French): Anik Lacasse-Richard; Montreal in Style
16. Best Beauty or Fashion Website: Randi Bergman,
17. Photographer of the Year: Malina Corpadean
18. Make-up Artist of the Year: Nicolas Blanchet
19. Best Magazine Cover: Dress to Kill, Stéphane Le Duc, Winter 2011

With Kimberly Lyn in Arthur Mendonça (left) and Nelia Belkova in Lanvin x H&M (right)

You may have noticed a familiar name in there for winner of the Best Beauty or Fashion Blog (English) category: The Backseat Stylers. WOOHOO! What an incredible honour it was for us to be named finalists alongside our blogger friends Nelia Belkova of Style Blog and Lolitta Dandoy of Fashion Is Everywhere, but to win?

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Spotted from the Backseat: P&G Beauty & Grooming Awards 2011 Edition

Randi Bergman and Paige Dzenis of FASHION Magazine

On November 1, the 2011 edition of the Canadian P&G Beauty & Grooming Awards were held in Toronto, hosted by actress Kim Cattrall. Celebrating our country’s best editorial content and brightest creative talents in beauty, grooming and fashion, the Awards brought together the faces behind the credits of our favourite Canadian print and online publications. From the prolific Jeanne Beker to singer Jully Black, Editors-in-Chief Lisa Tant (Flare) and Bernadette Morra (FASHION) to top Canadian designers Sunny Fong (VAWK), Stephen Wong and Kirk Pickersgill (Greta Constantine), the industry’s biggest names descended on the Carlu to recognize the year’s best work in 19 categories.

Congratulations to all the winners!

  1. Best Magazine Cover – Clin d’oeil, Marianne Thornton (Editor-in-Chief), July 2011
  2. Best Beauty Editor(s) of a Magazine – Kristen Vinakmens and Wing Sze Tang; Flare
  3. Best Scientific Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Kate Rae; Glow, Vampire Weekend
  4. Best Scientific Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (French) – Micheline Lortie and Sophie St-Laurent; Châtelaine, Les années beauté
  5. Best Creative Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Tania Kwong; Glow, Dark Angel
  6. Best Creative Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (French) – Sophie St-Laurent; Châtelaine, Sillages gourmands
  7. Best Fashion Editor of a Magazine – Susie Sheffman; FASHION
  8. Best Fashion Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Elio Iannacci; Maclean’s, The New Transsexual Chic
  9. Best Fashion Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (French) – Stéphane Le Duc; Dress to Kill, Jean Paul Gaultier, Génie de la mode
  10. Best Fashion or Beauty Blog – Michelle Mullins;
  11. Best Fashion or Beauty Blog (French) – Anik Lacasse-Richard;
  12. Best Male Grooming Feature – Leo Petaccia; Sharp, How a Man Should Groom
  13. Best Male Grooming Feature (French) – Sylvie Michelon; Clin d’oeil, Mad mâle
  14. Best Male Fashion Feature – Greg Hudson; Sharp, Heroes of Menswear
  15. Best Fashion or Beauty Website – Randi Bergman,
  16. Best New Face – Sarah Jordan, Specs Models
  17. Photographer of the Year – Chris Nicholls
  18. Hair Stylist of the Year – Anna Barseghian
  19. Make-up Artist of the Year – Sabrina Rinaldi
A special shout out to Anya Georgijevic, a finalist in the Best Fashion or Beauty Blog category for I’m The It Girl, and her to-die-for Nicholas Kirkwood laser-cut booties. Because while everyone else in attendance had their eye on the prize (a P&G Beauty & Grooming Award trophy, that is), I was ogling the swanky shoes on their feet. And on that note, check out the gallery below for photos of some of the evening’s chicest looks.

Actress and host Kim Cattrall 

Carly Stojsic of WGSN and Lisa Tant of FLARE Magazine

Nicholas Mellamphy of The Room at the Bay and Anya Georgijevic of I’m The It Girl

Designers Evan Biddell and Sunny Fong

Patricia Gajo, Bernadette Morra and Susie Sheffman of FASHION Magazine

xx, S


Enter Rowenta Canada’s LG Fashion Week Best Dressed Crest Contest!

On the opening day of this season’s LG Fashion Week yesterday, Rowenta Canada revealed their latest designer collaboration – a custom-designed LGFW Spring 2012 crest by designer Evan Biddell! The crest features Biddell’s logo, stylized bursts of steam to symbolize Rowenta, and a black maple leaf to represent this season’s LGFW theme, ‘Canada Cool’.

How do you get your hands on one of these? It’s easy. LGFW’s official garment care provider has set up shop inside the tents this week with a steaming station where you can iron one of these crests on your very own souvenir tank top. Fun, right? My friend J and I did just that last night, and we each now have a lovely souvenir from this season’s shows.

But that’s not all – Rowenta wants to see how you style your freshly crested tank! Submit a street style photo featuring the crested tank top to Rowenta’s “Best Dressed Crest” Contest and you’ll be entered to win a fabulous $600+ fashion prize pack, plus the chance to have your personal style profile featured on The Backseat Stylers (you know, this here site you’re reading)!

Not heading to LGFW this season? Don’t fret. Follow The Backseat Stylers on Facebook and Twitter - we’ll be giving away crests and tank tops, so you can still participate in the contest.

Check out all the “Best Dressed Crest” contest rules on Rowenta Canada’s Facebook page and get styling your crest!

Where to affix the crest? Decisions, decisions…

Why do I look like I’ve never handled an iron before?

J, on the other hand, seems to be a pro at this ironing thing…

Voila! One-of-a-kind LG Fashion Week Spring 2012 tank top. 

xx, S


Toronto Fashion Week – Evan Biddell Spring 2011: Kingdom

I’ve been following Evan Biddell ever since he won Season 1 of Project Runway Canada. Always impressed with the grandiose shows he puts on every season at Toronto Fashion Week, I’d assumed that Biddell’s larger-than-life persona, his runway spectacles and innovative designs were bringing in the buyers and the ka-ching. In fact, I still thought that last Tuesday night at Biddell’s Spring 2011 runway show, held on the production floor of SEVEN CONTINENTS, a company specializing in upholstered forms and furniture, mannequins, fixtures and accessorizers. It was only a few days later when I read this Eye Weekly cover story on Biddell that the illusion was shattered. No sales, rejected by Central St. Martins – Biddell not so much the superhero designer I’d thought, but rather human after all? Unexpected, yet endearing. It certainly put a different spin on what I’d seen on the runway last week.

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[FAT] Toronto Alternative Arts & Fashion Week 2010

Being a newbie to the whole [FAT] Toronto Alternative Arts & Fashion Week scene, I was looking forward to my first dose of alternative fashion, but sadly only managed to make it out to one night of shows due to other commitments. With lust as the theme for the night and Refined by Evan Biddell – one of the most highly anticipated shows of the week – on the schedule, I certainly picked a good night to show my face. M was my partner-in-crime for the evening and I was happy to be able to navigate through our first [FAT] experience together.

M and I started the night backstage courtesy of our lovely hosts Jacquie and Melissa from MAKE UP FOR EVER, who created and applied all of the makeup looks for the week. With a different emotion as the theme for each day of [FAT] and several makeup looks to evoke each emotion, Jacquie, Melissa and their team certainly had their hands full. Whether it was stenciled-in eyebrows or purple lipstick, the looks made strong statements with bold use of colour, perfectly complemented the clothing designs and generally just reeked of fearlessness. Of the slightly less adventurous type, M and I managed to wrangle some product recommendations from Jacquie (pictured chatting with M), who was more than willing to impart some of her wisdom on us. Not having previously been exposed to the MAKE UP FOR EVER line, I’m looking forward to testing out some of their products myself in the near future.

All of that preparation backstage was, of course, for a few minutes of glory on the [FAT] runway, and so it was time for the evening’s main event (for us) – Refined by Evan Biddell.

Refined, a collaboration between Toronto Fashion Week regular and Project Runway Canada Season 1 winner Evan Biddell and Cher Thornton from The Refinery, was a considerably more wearable but no less glamorous and in-your-face collection than Biddell’s TOFW effort a few short weeks ago. The reworked trenches were collection highlights for me. Always a show to behold, Biddell’s fierce designs stood out that much more on the runway thanks to the cast of characters he sent them on – 10 of his friends, including Toronto fashion personalities like Sarah Nicole Prickett and Gail McInnes.

The rest of the shows that night were, admittedly, a bit of a blur. Finding ourselves seatless after our gallivants backstage, M and I were left to enjoy the shows standing by the photographers’ pit. Squatting to get the shots in 4.5-inch Louboutins that caused unbelievable pain and then a scary numbness in my feet, I found it difficult to concentrate on what was happening in front of me. No pain, no gain, they say. If that’s the case – why were my photos still so damned crappy?

xx, S

Runways and Showrooms

Toronto Fashion Week: Evan Biddell Fall 2010

LG Fashion Week wrapped up days ago and I’m only getting around to posting about it now. I was so exhausted at the end of last week, because of a combination of fashion and non-fashion exploits, that I needed all of Easter weekend to recharge. Things are still hectic on the personal front, but I’m back in the blogging game and ready to share my Fashion Week adventures.

Though it wasn’t officially on the calendar, Mr. Backseat Styler and I attended the VAWK Fall 2010 show on Day 2 and then proceeded to skip all the official Fashion Week goings on for the day. Backstage at the VAWK show filled me with enough glee to last several days and I didn’t want any potential mediocrity to ruin my high, so I laid low until Evan Biddell’s show at the end of Day 3. Since his first appearance as a contestant on Project Runway Canada Season 1, Biddell has brought a unique aesthetic that hasn’t been seen on any other runway. I knew Biddell’s was not a show to be missed, and I was right.

Though the looks Biddell put on the runway were bookended by pieces made in prints that were clearly not for the conservative crowd, he was sure to include a number of black pieces in the middle for those who are willing to be adventurous in design rather than colour. Though wild prints, fringe and high shine metallics are not for me, I can still appreciate Biddell’s innovative spirit and high quality construction.

While much of the collection was too bold for little ol’ me, the hands-down highlight of the show was this animal print dress. When I caught glimpse of this fierceness coming down the runway – well, it took a helluva lot of restraint not to howl in approval. Or clap; I suppose that would be more civilized.

At the end of the show, I must admit that I felt just the slightest twinge of disappointment. It wasn’t the collection itself per se, but rather my own expectations. Biddell’s Spring 2010 show completely blew me away, and I was looking for Fall 2010 to top it. It may have fallen a bit short in my mind, but one thing’s for certain – Biddell will never be accused of being boring. And now that his Fall 2010 show has come and gone, I’ll have to get my next dose of Biddell excitement with a visit to his new digs.

xx, S

Runways and Showrooms

LG Fashion Week Spring 2010 – Day 4 Recap

Day 4 of LG Fashion Week was full of highs and lows. A definite low was starting the day off with showing up late to the Aime show and thus having to watch from the media pit. Highs came later when I was rather unexpectedly (and to my utter delight) stopped by a FASHION Magazine photog and then a freelance writer for Elle, who both wanted to snap my outfit. The photos may never be published anywhere, but that’s fine by me. Those two lovely individuals have no idea they made my day. Likely my entire week. Possibly even the month – will have to see how the rest of it goes.

Me in Aime dress (of course I’d wear Monica Mei’s design to her show), Zara puff-sleeved jacket, Banana Republic necklace, lace leggings from The Bay, Chanel black 2.55 with gold hardware, Christian Louboutin grey suede ankle boots.

T in H&M top, American Apparel skirt, Zara belt and vintage boots.
In between these highs and lows were some in-betweens in the form of the Cheri Milaney, Evan Biddell, RUDSAK, NADA and Romona Keveza shows. Cheri Milaney I found confusing and will leave it at that. Evan Biddell was amazing, as I mentioned in my review.
Romona Keveza’s show was by far the prettiest show of the week – her evening gowns were absolutely stunning and deserved every eruption of applause from the friendlist, most appreciative crowd at LG Fashion Week.

I wasn’t sure what to expect with RUDSAK. I mean, sure, I knew there’d be leather. But I’d never had the urge to step foot in a RUDSAK boutique before and was curious as to whether the show would inspire me to do so. I am sad to report that, for the most part, it did not. The only times I felt inspired were when these two looks came down the runway (that’s leather – can you believe how soft it looks?). I think I’ll be sticking to Mackage for my leather garb.

Fashion Magazine

NADA wasn’t on my radar before the show, but it certainly was on everyone else’s because that tent was packed to the rafters. The collection was dark and sexy, but dangerously close to costumey in my opinion. Perhaps it was the styling – beehive hairdos haven’t been requested in any salon by any modern, sexy woman in years upon years now. Nonetheless, when this exquisite coat came down that runway, all was made up for because I instantly fell in love with it. Left me speechless.

Toronto Life

Day 4 was the busiest of the week for us Backseat Stylers, but it sure went by fast. Couldn’t help but feel a little sad that there was only one day left.

xx, S

Runways and Showrooms

Evan Biddell Spring 2010


Evan Biddell wins the prize yet again for Most Innovative at LG Fashion Week. His show on day 4 of LG Fashion Week didn’t fail to surprise; from the LG phones on the oversized and elaborate accessories to the alien-esque designs, the collection was a resounding hit and it showed once again why he won PRC Season 1. Evan Biddell has an aesthetic that’s entirely his own and his ability to push his own boundaries season after season yet still maintain that essential wearability in his designs is exciting and astounding.

The collection was surprisingly cohesive with its mix of urban streetwear and flowing evening gowns covering day to night, but could have potentially been edited a little more tightly. I could have done without some of the day looks that looked appropriate for camping; or at least what I imagine people wear camping since I’ve never been. However, the way the first stunning black gown and the last billowing orange dress moved was breathtaking and they opened and closed the show on extremely high notes, while the LG and EB collaborative statement jewelry paired with a range of edgy and innovative looks kept the audience captivated in between.

With two well-received post-PRC collections under his belt, it’s apparent that while PRC contestants may come and go from the LG Fashion Week runway, Evan Biddell will be a favourite for seasons to come.

xx, S

Image Credits: Toronto Life

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