Street Style

The Canadian Street Style Lookbook – April 4, 2014 Edition


Kassandra Camponi of Kastles, Edmonton

If you get a feeling of déjà vu with this week’s edition of The Canadian Street Style Lookbook, you’re bang on. A few standout pieces that have made appearances recently are featured again, styled in a fresh new way.

Case #1: Joe Fresh‘s trompe l’oeil shirt. We first spotted it on Barbara, who knocked it out of the park with a head-to-toe black and white ensemble. This week, Lookbook newcomer Vickie paired the same shirt with a bright red perforated leather jacket for the perfect pop of colour. One shirt, worn two fantastic ways.

Case #2: Ann Taylor‘s TDF cage pencil skirt. It first showed up in the Lookbook on Christina, who got us lusting after the skirt when she expertly paired it with a black moto jacket and baby pink pumps. This week, Nelia made us want it even more with an equally fierce black, white and red getup, one of our favourite colour combos ever. Again, one skirt, worn two uber-cool ways.

Déjà vu? Why not when it looks this good.


Gracie Carroll of Gracie Carroll, Toronto


Vanessa Hong of The Haute Pursuit, Vancouver/Beijing


Nelia Belkova of Style Blog, Toronto

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Street Style

The Canadian Street Style Lookbook – March 28, 2014 Edition


Amanda by Max Kopanygin for MTV Fora, Toronto

With fashion weeks taking place both in Vancouver and Toronto last week, this week’s edition of The Canadian Street Style Lookbook is a particularly juicy one. Our favourite style bloggers from coast to coast descended on the two cities to take in the Fall 2014 collections in their fashion week best, serving up some serious eye candy.

In Vancouver, Ivy channeled her ladylike sensibility into a very feminine blush and black-and-white polka dot pairing. On the other side of the country in Toronto, Amanda (snapped by street style photographer Max Kopanygin) put on a lesson in metallic dressing. She also put forth a very strong case for socks with sandals.

We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the Beckerman sisters. The Simpsons-adorned denim jacket, yin yang handbag and bright yellow knits they sported to World Mastercard Fashion Week are proof that no one has as much fun as they do with fashion.


Ania Boniecka of Ania.B, Calgary


Gracie Carroll of Gracie Carroll, Toronto


Krystin Lee of Suburban Faux Pas, Toronto

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Events

Inside the Inaugural Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards: 70 Red Carpet Photos of Coco Rocha, DSquared2, Jeanne Beker and More


Model of the Year winner Coco Rocha with multiple award winners DSQUARED2′s Dean and Dan Caten

On Saturday, February 1, the inaugural Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards (CAFA) were held at The Fairmont Royal York in Toronto, where a venerable who’s who of the Canadian fashion industry flocked to honour its brightest stars. The first of its kind in our fair nation, CAFA’s raison d’être is to recognize outstanding achievement and emerging talent in the fashion community, and this past weekend’s incredible awards gala was certainly a long time coming.


Emerging Talent Award winner Sarah Stevenson and Elisha Cuthbert

In between comedic interludes by master of ceremonies Gerry Dee and a musical performance by JRDN, the first ever CAFA winners were revealed at the highly-anticipated awards ceremony. Congratulations to all the immensely talented winners and nominees:

Womenswear Designer of the Year: 

  • Christie Smythe & Andrea Lenczner, SMYTHE
  • Denis Gagnon
  • Jeremy Laing – Winner
  • Kimberely Newport-Mimran, Pink Tartan
  • Kirk Pickersgill & Stephen Wong, Greta Constantine

Menswear Designer of The Year: 

  • Davidson Manaloto, wings + horns
  • Philippe Dubuc
  • Philip Sparks
  • Travis Taddeo – Winner
  • Shawn Hewson, Bustle

Outstanding Achievement: 

  • David Dixon
  • Dean & Dan Caten, DSQUARED2 – Winner
  • Denis Gagnon
  • Lida Baday
  • Marie Saint-Pierre


Accessory Designer of the Year nominee Jenny Bird and Stylist of the Year winner George Antonopoulos

Accessory Designer of The Year:  

  • Dexter & Byron Peart, WANT Les Essentials de la Vie – Winner
  • Ela & Martin Aldorsson, Ela Handbags
  • John Fluevog
  • Jenny Bird
  • Maryam Keyhani

Canadian Style Award: 

  • Coco Rocha
  • Joe Mimran – Winner
  • Lisa Tant

Image Maker of the Year:

  • Chris Nicholls – Winner
  • Stephanie Mark, Jake Rosenberg, The Coveteur
  • Gabor Jurina
  • Max Abadian
  • Tommy Ton

Vanguard Award honouree Jeanne Beker and Stacey McKenzie

International Designer of the Year: 

  • Dean & Dan Caten, DSQUARED2 – Winner
  • Erdem Moralioğlu
  • Jeremy Laing
  • Jason Wu
  • Mark Fast

Stylist of the Year:

  • Cary Tauben
  • George Antonopoulos – Winner
  • Liz Cabral
  • Peter Papapetrou
  • Susie Sheffman

Model of the Year: 

  • Coco Rocha – Winner
  • Daria Werbowy
  • Yasmin Warsame


Suzanne and Chloe Rogers

Emerging Talent Award: 

  • Beaufille
  • Eliza Faulkner
  • Laura Siegel
  • Martin Lim
  • Sarah Stevenson – Winner
  • Sid Neigum
Emerging Talent Award winner Sarah Stevenson, who also won the 2013 TFI New Labels competition, took home a $10,000 cash prize sponsored by Atelier Swarovski, an exclusive mentorship program with Joe Fresh, and a Spring/Summer 2015 look book produced by THE COLLECTIONS. The inimitable Jeanne Beker was also recognized with the Vanguard Award for her 27-year run as the host of Fashion Television, a strong influence on so many in the room that night and around the world, as well as her many other pursuits in the industry over the years.


Sylvia Mantella with Greta Constantine’s Kirk Pickersgill and Stephen Wong

Canada’s top fashion talent was celebrated both on stage and off, and we were delighted to be surrounded by stunning red carpet ready creations by homegrown designers. With the likes of Coco Rocha, socialite Suzanne Rogers, sponsor Sylvia Mantella and model Stacey McKenzie leading the way in DSQUARED2, Erdem, Greta Constantine and VAWK respectively, the Canadian fashion set absolutely turned it out for the industry’s biggest night of the year.


Accessory Designer of the Year nominee Maryam Keyhani

Check out the gallery below for 70 – yes 70! – style snaps from the inaugural Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards. Congrats to all the 2014 CAFA winners and nominees, and to the CAFA team for an outstanding first year!

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Street Style

The Canadian Street Style Lookbook – Best of 2013!

Started in 2012, The Canadian Street Style Lookbook really hit its stride in its first full year, and it was all thanks to the very fashionable style bloggers we featured from coast to coast. With over 400 looks served up in our weekly round-ups in 2013, one fact became abundantly clear: we’re one stylish nation. From the Pantone colour of the year emerald green to leather everything to that inescapable Zara skort, our favourite bloggers rocked all of the year’s biggest trends, but they also marched to the beat of their own style drum.

Over the last 12 months, established stars like Samantha, Caillianne and Chloe Beckerman of Beckerman Bite Plate and Nelia Belkova of Style Blog continued to awe and inspire us, Lookbook mainstays like Ania Boniecka of Ania.B, Ivy Xu of This Is What We Do and Krystin Lee of Suburban Faux Pas took their sartorial games to the next level, and newcomers like Sasha Exeter of So Sasha and Vanessa Cesario of The Brunette Salad arrived on the scene with a fashionable bang.

With week after week of ultra-chic ensembles, selecting just 10 of our favourites was an impossible task…so we chose 20 instead. Thank you to all the ladies and gents we featured in 2013 for a year’s worth of blog fodder – we bow down to your sartorial talents. We can’t wait to show you lovely readers what Canadian style bloggers from across the country, including Lookbook regulars and new faces we’ve yet to discover, are wearing in 2014!


Alexandra Nikolajev of I’m A Little, Toronto
A fresh, preppy take on the Canadian Tuxedo, which made a triumphant return to the style scene this year. Done with gold accessories and a touch of leopard, double denim never looked better.


Alyssa Lau of The Ordinary Peoples, Edmonton
The statement coat doesn’t get much bolder than in this metallic hue, styled to perfection with neutrals by Edmonton’s fashion blogging golden girl, a Lookbook regular.


Ania Boniecka of Ania.B, Victoria
This Calgary native served up chic look after chic look all year. This effortless, head-to-toe black getup stole our hearts, but we could have easily included another handful of Ania’s outfits in this year-end round-up. She’s just that good.


Anik Lacasse-Richard of Montreal In Style, Montreal
Leopard print and burgundy leather are a match made in style heaven, and we’d expect nothing less from this fierce Montrealer. She never fails to impress with her non-stop stream of edgy ensembles.


Anonymous by Ania Boniecka of Ania.B, Calgary
The classic black-and-white colour combo was a huge trend this year, but done with a strategically placed pop of orange (and the most amazing round bob!)? A standout look.

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Events

Spotted from the Backseat: CANFAR’s Bloor Street Entertains 2013 Edition


Joe Mimran and Kimberley Newport-Mimran

On November 27, Toronto’s Mink Mile played host to CANFAR‘s annual Bloor Street Entertains fundraising gala. In its 17th year, the event drew the city’s most influential – and fashionable – to the Royal Ontario Museum for a glamourous pre-party and to various boutiques and galleries in the Bloor-Yorkville area for elegant dining experiences on the eve of World AIDS Day.

The only thing more fabulous than shopping in luxurious boutiques like Burberry, Cartier, Holt Renfrew, Mulberry, and Tiffany & Co. is having a private seated dinner inside them, and that’s exactly what Bloor Street Entertains is all about. The likes of style icon Jeanne Beker, Hudson’s Bay Company vice-chair Bonnie Brooks, and fashion powerhouse couple Joe Mimran and Kimberly Newport-Mimran were spotted among the CANFAR supporters in their Wednesday best.

Check out the gallery below for  21 gala style snaps featuring Toronto fashion scene favourites Suzanne Rogers, Sylvia Mantella, Jay Strut and more from #BSE13.


Jeanne Beker and Bonnie Brooks


Suzanne Rogers and Sylvia Mantella


Jenna Bitove Naumovich


Jay Strut and Lina Policaro

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Events

Spotted from the Backseat: Canadian Fabric Presents Le Grand Bal


Sylvia Mantella, Suzanne Rogers and Brittney Kuczynski

On November 19, Toronto’s social set descended on the Royal Ontario Museum for Le Grand Bal, a black tie gala to celebrate the launch of a new Canadian cultural yearbook, Canadian Fabric, and in support of a very worthy cause, Oolagen. In its inaugural year, the event was as fabulous as one would imagine with honorary chair Suzanne Rogers, chair Sylvia Mantella and editor-in-chief Brittney Kuczynski at the helm.

The evening fêted the very first issue of Canadian Fabric, an annual publication celebrating what makes us fashionably Canadian, and the 6 philanthropists profiled in it, including Peter Gilgan, founder of Mattamy Homes; Lynn Factor, Vice Chair and Lead Director of the Children’s Aid Foundation; Cheryl McEwen, co-Founder of McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine; Lisa Ray, actress and host of ’Top Chef Canada’; P.K. Subban, defenseman with the Montreal Canadians; and Sylvia Mantella, Director of Brand Development of Mantella Corporation. To underscore the focus on philanthropy, guests were introduced to Oolagan, a youth mental health centre in Toronto to which net proceeds from the event and sale of the magazine (available at Chapters/Indigo) will be donated.

Philanthropy was on the agenda, but fashion certainly didn’t take a back seat. We spied stunning designs by Canadian talent like Erdem, Greta Constantine and Lucian Matis on the fabulous partygoers. Check out the gallery below for style snaps of uber-chic guests in gorgeous gown after gorgeous gown.


Zoomer Magazine’s Suzanne Boyd


Singer Ivana Santilli

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Musings

The Backseat Stylers Featured in CBC’s Story on the Rise of the Fashion Blogger

If you follow The Backseat Styles on Twitter or Facebook, or are an avid watcher of CBC’s various daily news offerings, then you may have caught yours truly on the boob tube yesterday. S was featured alongside fellow Toronto fashion blogger Jay Strut in reporter Deana Sumanac’s timely story on the rise of the fashion blogger, which was previewed on the morning news and aired on The National.

In case you missed it, check out the clips below for a peek at yours truly’s 15 minutes of fame.

On the morning news:

On CBC’s The National:

Events

The Room at Hudson’s Bay Fêtes Shoe Designers Nicholas Kirkwood and Sophia Webster


Yours truly with Nicholas Kirkwood

Canada’s swankiest shoe salon continues to host some of the biggest names in footwear. A mere two weeks ago it was Sam Edelman who stopped by Hudson’s Bay‘s Toronto flagship for a visit. This week? London-based designer and Backseat Stylers favourite Nicholas Kirkwood and his protégé and rising star Sophia Webster.

The city’s fashion set descended on The Room‘s shoe department – the setting for the invite-only affair and home to luxury brands like Christian Louboutin, Charlotte Olympia and Alaïa – for the chance to chat shoes and share a glass of bubbly with our guests-of-honour from across the pond. Both brought with them their latest, to-die-for offerings, which had us in serious danger of whipping out our credit cards at any given moment.

All that distracted us from spending the next year’s worth of footwear budgets that very night was the chic attendees in their Tuesday best. We’re still swooning over Suzanne Rogers‘ artful Thom Browne dress, Jenna Bitove Naumovich‘s fierce red tartan tailcoat, and Sophia Webster’s vibrant Kenzo get-up. Check out the gallery below for 33 snaps of partygoer style and – what else? – shoes, shoes and more shoes.


Bonnie Brooks and Sophia Webster


Vonna Bitove and Jenna Bitove Naumovich


Kimberly Lyn, Samantha Beckerman, yours truly, and Caillianne Beckerman

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Events

Hermès Brings Le Festival des Métiers to the Design Exchange in Toronto

Hermès is in town, ladies and gents, and the most prestigious luxury brand in the world is inviting mere mortals like us – and you! – to take a rare peek inside the techniques used in its workshops to create its coveted silks, leather accessories, and even saddles. We had the pleasure of attending the press preview earlier this week, and were completely blown away as we watched the talented craftspeople assemble a Kelly bag, hand-paint a plate, and set diamonds in the pyramid of a collier de chien in the making.

This engaging cultural exhibition provides a fascinating insight into the longstanding traditions and values of Hermès in the crafting of fine objects defined by an uncompromising commitment to the highest standards of quality. Festival des Métiers features intimate behind-the-scenes demonstrations by masterful craftspeople from the renowned Hermès workshops in France, illustrating the methods in which products are painstakingly made-by-hand using techniques passed from generation to generation.

Festival des Métiers is a can’t-miss exhibition for fashion fans who are lucky enough to be in Toronto this week. It’s open to the public October 2 – 6, 2013, 11am – 7pm daily at the Design Exchange (234 Bay Street, Toronto), and it’s free!


Hermès CEO Patrick Thomas, Nelia Belkova, yours truly, and Jay Strut (Image credit: Spiro Mandylor)


A diamond collier de chien in the making!

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Street Style

The Canadian Street Style Lookbook – September 13, 2013 Edition


Raez Argulla of Cheap Thrills, Winnipeg

We may have had quite the heat wave in Toronto this week, but all signs point to the arrival of a new season.

Between Ania‘s killer red leather pants, Alyssa‘s super cute plaid varsity jacket and Élodie‘s fierce biker boots, it’s obvious that fall fashion is here. Mother Nature is catching up too: those are actual fallen leaves in Raez‘s style snap. It doesn’t get any realer than that.


Ania Boniecka of Ania.B, Victoria


Joandy L. of My Style by Joandy, Toronto


Jay Strut of Jay Strut, Toronto

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