On June 5, Toronto Fashion Incubator held its annual TFI New Labels competition, with four up and coming labels showcasing their collections in front of a who’s who of the Canadian fashion industry. Chaired by philanthropist Suzanne Rogers and emceed by a David Dixon-clad Jeanne Beker, the evening featured a cocktail reception and runway show that culminated in the naming of AliceAzur by Miriam Baker as Most Promising New Label.
Miriam Baker took the honour over fellow finalists Christopher Paunil Designs, Laura Siegel and Nomad of the Sun by Ashley Boutcher. “All of our finalists have promising futures and each year we are amazed by the caliber of the showcased collections,” said Susan Langdon, Executive Director of TFI.
It was a tough decision we bet, and we don’t envy the esteemed panel of judges, which included TNT owner Arie Assaraf, designer David Dixon, FLARE Fashion Director Tiyana Grulovic and Suzanne Rogers, for having to make it.
“I am overwhelmed with this acknowledgement and would not have pushed myself this far if it wasn’t for the support of TFI and the panel of judges,” said Baker. ”I have learned through this process and am excited to develop a complete size range and start production.” Baker was awarded a $25,000 cash prize generously donated by Suzanne Rogers, an editorial spread in FLARE Magazine, and production of a lookbook for her collection by Covergirl and Pantene.
We’re loving the chic, feminine aesthetic of AliceAzur, and can’t wait to see Miriam Baker take her label to the next level with this big TFI New Labels win now under her belt. In the meantime, take a gander at the gallery below for images of the runway show and, of course, of guests’ glam (and, in many cases, Canadian-designed!) gala style.
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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
- 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:
- 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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Amy Burstyn Fritz and Graham Smith
On September 5, Toronto Life hosted its annual Toronto’s Most Stylish bash at the Shangri-La Hotel, fêting those fashionable folks who had been declared by the Stylebook as the city’s most sartorially-gifted this year. Listed or not, over 500 of Toronto’s social set arrived in their Thursday best, showing exactly why they’d earned their Most Stylish title or making a strong case for a nod next year.
Among those who got the hat tip were designer Kimberley Newport-Mimran of Pink Tartan, fashion directors Liz Cabral and Susie Sheffman, bloggers Bianca Venerayan and Danielle Roche of Kastor & Pollux (frequently seen in The Canadian Street Style Lookbook!), and accessories designer Jenny Bird. Given the regularity with which these fabulous women are featured on this here blog, we wholeheartedly agree that they’re very much well-deserved on all counts.
Check out the gallery below for 33 photos of tastemakers, partygoers, and Most Stylish contenders past, present and future from Toronto Life‘s soirée.
Danielle Roche and Bianca Venerayan
S with Hawley Dunbar and Nelia Belkova
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Christian Louboutin, Jessica Chiu and yours truly
The Christian Louboutin 20th anniversary retrospective exhibition officially bowed last week at the Design Exchange in Toronto with much fanfare. In addition to a press conference and a public appearance at Holt Renfrew, Monsieur Louboutin personally launched the exhibit at an opening night gala attended by many of the French footwear designer’s biggest fans in the city.
Guests, including actress Sarah Gadon, Smythe designers Andrea Lenczner and Christie Smythe, and newly-appointed Hudson’s Bay Company vice-chairman Bonnie Brooks, sported their favourite red-soled designs to see highlights of Louboutin’s work from the last 20 years up close and personal and have a chat with the man himself. It was an event not to be missed by a true shoe addict, so yours truly was obviously there with camera in hand and beloved Loubies on the feet.
In fact, from the Louboutin carousel to the carefully-selected footwear choices of our fellow partygoers, there was shoe candy everywhere we looked. Check out the gallery below for 23 images from the Louboutin opening gala at the DX.
Want a closer look at the exhibition? We might just be able to hook you up: we’ve got 5 pairs of tickets to give away to 5 lucky readers of The Backseat Stylers! Contest rules are below. Good luck and happy shoe gazing!
1. To enter, leave us a comment on this blog post and ‘like’ The Backseat Stylers and Design Exchange’s Facebook pages here and here.
2. For a bonus entry, follow @backseatstylers and @DesignExchange on Twitter and tweet the following: “The @backseatstylers are giving away 5 pairs of @LouboutinWorld @DesignExchange exhibit tickets, and I want in! http://bit.ly/11XKGBx #DXCL”
3. Contest closes on July 2, 2013 at midnight. Winners will be contacted via email.
4. There are no prize substitutions. Travel not included.
Sarah Gadon and Christian Louboutin
Suzanne Boyd, Suzanne Cohon and Alexandra Weston
Caillianne and Samantha Beckerman
S with Kimberly Lyn (left)
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Soho House’s Markus Anderson and FLARE Magazine’s Liz Cabral
On November 8, 2012, The Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and Yorkville boutique George C hosted the 2nd Annual Lunch with Margaret & George at the Shangri-La Hotel in Toronto. Surrounded, quite literally, by lovely ladies who lunch decked out in their noon-hour finest, the charity function was one of the swankiest and most fashionable meals I’ve had the good fortune of enjoying in some time.
The highlight of the event came when, just before dessert, guests were treated to a presentation of Derek Lam‘s Spring 2013 runway collection. Though the New York-based designer himself was unfortunately unable to attend as planned (Mother Nature had other, snow-filled plans for him), his pieces, inspired by Barkley L. Hendricks paintings from the 1970s, thankfully made it to the luncheon for our viewing pleasure. And pleased we were, with the very covet-worthy line-up of ready-to-wear, handbags and shoes that we got to see up close and personal.
Canadian fashion industry heavyweights like FLARE Magazine‘s new editor-in-chief Miranda Purves, her counterpart at FASHION Magazine Bernadette Morra, Holt Renfrew’s Lisa Tant and FLARE fashion director Liz Cabral lent their support to the very worthy cause and stylish event. By the time the last morsel of food was consumed, over $150,000 had been raised in support of the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation. A very productive working lunch indeed.
FLARE Magazine’s Miranda Purves (centre) with George C owners Lisa and George Corbo
Models line up in preparation for the Derek Lam Spring 2013 presentation
Holt Renfrew’s Lisa Tant
FASHION Magazine’s Bernadette Morra
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Hermès sure knows how to throw a party. The purveyor of the world’s most coveted silks and, of course, the holy grail Birkin bag threw a Swinging Silk dance bash last week in Toronto. Many of the city’s most fashionable arrived sporting their favourite silks at the brilliantly decorated Berkeley Church for a group swing dancing lesson, as well as a temporary tattoo station and requisite photo booth.
Classic 90 x 90 scarves hung from the rafters as partygoers including FLARE and FASHION‘s respective editors-in-chief Miranda Purves and Bernadette Morra, socialite Suzanne Rogers, and the perpetually, perfectly in costume Beckerman clan danced the night away. The dress code was specific and most adhered to it: silk scarves, skirts and ballet shoes for the ladies and slicked back hair and tuxedo or zoot suits for the gentlemen. Yours truly decided that a tux with a twist was in order, as did Nelia Belkova, my partner-in-crime for the evening.
Check out the gallery below for shots from one of the most fun events in the city so far this year. If they have you lusting for a new Hermès scarf, you’re in luck, because the company recently launched its Canadian website and is offering complimentary ground shipping until November 2, 2012.
And while you’re waiting on that unmistakeably orange box to arrive on your doorstep, give this fascinating piece on Kermit Oliver, the American artist designing scarves for Hermès, a read.
Nelia Belkova, Ryan M. Cheung and me
HELLO! Canada’s Lisa Tant and Shrimpton Couture’s Cherie Federau
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Honorary chair Suzanne Rogers and sponsor Sylvia Mantella
On May 3, Toronto Fashion Incubator celebrated its 25th anniversary with a fundraising gala at the Royal Ontario Museum, aptly dubbed TFI25, that was attended by a who’s who of Toronto’s social set and fashion industry and fit for Barbie herself. Chaired by Suzanne Rogers and emceed by a Greta Constantine-clad Jully Black, the evening featured a VIP dinner, a Barbie-inspired celebrity runway show, the annual TFI New Labels design competition fashion show and, of course, an after-party.
Singer and TFI25 Master of Ceremonies Jully Black
After a 6 month long competition, finalists Patrick Larrivée, Sid Neigum, Jameson Kane by Genevieve Pearson and Stanley Capobianco, and [blak] – i by Diego Fuchs and Helder Aguiar showed four very well received collections that made the TFI New Labels judges’ decision that much more difficult to make. “Judges are in big trouble from @SusanAtTFI”, FLARE Magazine‘s Editor-in-Chief Lisa Tant tweeted, ”because we can’t decide and won’t come out.”
FLARE Magazine’s Editor-in-Chief and TFI New Labels judge Lisa Tant
Tant was joined on the judging panel by TNT Boutiques’ Arie Assaraf, Toronto Star‘s Derick Chetty, TFI President David Dixon, TFI Executive Director Susan Langdon and the gala’s honorary chair Suzanne Rogers, who donated the $25,000 grand prize. In the end, Edmonton native Sid Neigum was named this year’s TFI New Labels winner, taking home a prize package valued at $60,000, which included a feature in FLARE Magazine and a design studio at the TFI sponsored by Arie Assaraf.
TFI New Labels winner Sid Neigum and model
Those weren’t the only prizes up for grabs at TFI25. The Barbie-inspired fashion show featured celebrity models like Dina Pugliese, Tanya Kim and Trish Stratus in designs by VAWK, Arthur Mendonça, Anastasia Lomonova and more. While past TFI New Labels winner Sarah Nicol of Sar Couture was awarded the $10,000 cash prize, it was actress Tara Spencer-Nairn in VAWK who stole the show with her robotic runway walk, tweeted FASHION Magazine‘s Editor-in-Chief Bernadette Morra.
Dina Pugliese in Barbie-inspired dress by Stema
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Liz Cabral of FLARE Magazine at the Mugler event at The Room at the Bay
Toronto’s most fashionable folks made our gig as part-time street style snappers rather easy this past year. We spent little time trolling the streets and, instead, had the pleasure of shooting the city’s most impeccably dressed at the very best industry events and charity galas the city had to offer. These 10 shots are our favourite from the year, and they feature 11 stunning women in ensembles that made us drop our jaws and shamelessly chase after them for photos.
And on that note, thank you to all of our street style subjects from the past 12 months, included in this post or not, who graciously allowed us to interrupt conversations with long lost friends or accost them as they were just biting into an hors d’oeuvre, and who pretended not to notice when we started snapping with our lens cap still on. We look forward to shooting all of you again in 2012!
Suzanne Rogers in Paul & Joe Spring 2011 at the 10th Annual POGO Gala, with Jenna Naumovich
Elly Barlin-Daniels in Marc Jacobs Resort 2011 at the 10th Annual POGO Gala
Amy Burstyn-Fritz of Knot PR in Calla Fall 2011 at Operanation
Carly Stojsic of WGSN and Lisa Tant of FLARE Magazine (in Prabal Gurung Fall 2011) at the P&G Beauty and Grooming Awards
Vyara Ndejuru of ALDO at the A is for ALDO launch
Faith Orfus of RAC Boutique at Operanation
Jenna Naumovich in Erdem at the Ignite the Spark Gala
Mosha Lundström Halbert of FLARE Magazine at the Proenza Schouler event at The Room, with Shinan Govani of the National Post
Ainsley Kerr in Lucian Matis Fall 2011 at the 10th Annual POGO Gala
xx, T & S
Barbara Amiel, Baroness Black of Crossharbour
On November 22, the Bloor/Yorkville community hosted the 15th annual Bloor Street Entertains, a fundraiser in honour of CANFAR. While I was an attendee last year, this time around I found myself playing the role of society photographer for the evening, and boy was it grand. With 20 luxury stores on Mink Mile lending their space as dinner venues, including Holt Renfrew, Tiffany, Cartier and Hugo Boss, and only the boldest of Toronto’s bold-faced names in attendance, it was one of the most glamourous events I’ve had the pleasure of covering.
Scurrying from boutique to boutique in the pouring rain (rather unglamourously), I captured everyone from Barbara Amiel, wife of Lord Conrad Black, to Hilary Weston, the 26th Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, to FLARE Magazine‘s Editor-in-Chief Lisa Tant, all in their red carpet-ready finest. And all for a very worthy cause; read about how you too can support the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research, in your own way, over here.
Hilary Weston, 26th Lieutenant Governor of Ontario
Lisa Tant, Editor-in-Chief of Flare
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!
- Best Magazine Cover – Clin d’oeil, Marianne Thornton (Editor-in-Chief), July 2011
- Best Beauty Editor(s) of a Magazine – Kristen Vinakmens and Wing Sze Tang; Flare
- Best Scientific Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Kate Rae; Glow, Vampire Weekend
- Best Scientific Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (French) – Micheline Lortie and Sophie St-Laurent; Châtelaine, Les années beauté
- Best Creative Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Tania Kwong; Glow, Dark Angel
- Best Creative Beauty Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (French) – Sophie St-Laurent; Châtelaine, Sillages gourmands
- Best Fashion Editor of a Magazine – Susie Sheffman; FASHION
- Best Fashion Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper – Elio Iannacci; Maclean’s, The New Transsexual Chic
- Best Fashion Feature of a Magazine or Newspaper (French) – Stéphane Le Duc; Dress to Kill, Jean Paul Gaultier, Génie de la mode
- Best Fashion or Beauty Blog – Michelle Mullins; LipstickRules.com
- Best Fashion or Beauty Blog (French) – Anik Lacasse-Richard; Montrealinstyle.com
- Best Male Grooming Feature – Leo Petaccia; Sharp, How a Man Should Groom
- Best Male Grooming Feature (French) – Sylvie Michelon; Clin d’oeil, Mad mâle
- Best Male Fashion Feature – Greg Hudson; Sharp, Heroes of Menswear
- Best Fashion or Beauty Website – Randi Bergman, FashionMagazine.com
- Best New Face – Sarah Jordan, Specs Models
- Photographer of the Year – Chris Nicholls
- Hair Stylist of the Year – Anna Barseghian
- 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