Confession: we’re totally obsessed with J.Crew, especially all things J.Crew Collection. So when an invite arrived for the opening of the very first Collection store in Canada, on Bloor Street in Toronto no less, we were stoked. The promise of a Ms. Jenna Lyons in attendance too? We were officially beside ourselves.
Sadly, though we donned our Collection best for the occasion, our date with J.Crew’s creative director was not to be. Stuck in New York thanks to an epic snowstorm, Ms. Lyons sent a few looks fresh off the Fall 2014 runway in her place. Those, plus some good old Canadian-themed photo booth fun and almost 6,500 square feet of the statement necklaces and No. 2 pencil skirts we love so much, did a fantastic job of making up for our style icon’s absence.
Check out the gallery below for style snaps of Toronto’s fashion set in their favourite J.Crew duds. Nowhere near the new store? We’ll race you over to jcrew.com.
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Leandra Medine, Madame Man Repeller herself, stopped by Holt Renfrew‘s Toronto flagship last week for a meet-and-greet with fans. The popular fashion blogger sat down for a Q&A session with FASHION Magazine‘s Randi Bergman, and then graciously signed copies of her first book Man Repeller: Seeking Love. Finding Overalls. for budding man repellers.
Missed her personal appearance and haven’t yet picked up your copy? Here’s Leandra’s pitch for you to do so:
“…look, I’m not going to tell you that you have to read it but I am going to say that you should. Why? Because (1) if you already hate me, it will fuel those emotions, thus making you a more passionate individual than you were previously. (2) There are stories about all kinds of weird things like seer sucker bermuda shorts and the ankle length white socks I forgot to take off the first time I engaged in sexual intercourse.”
Sounds like a must-read. Before you click on over to Amazon.ca for a copy, check out the gallery below for party snaps from Leandra’s visit at Holt Renfrew.
FASHION Magazine’s Randi Bergman and Man Repeller Leandra Medine
FASHION Magazine’s Paige Dzenis and Nancy Won
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We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: those Greta Constantine kids sure know how to throw a party. The design duo of Stephen Wong and Kirk Pickersgill held their 4th annual summer poolside soirée at the Toronto home of Michael Cooper and Krystal Koo last week, and it was as fabulous a night as ever before.
Dubbed “Bath, House, Steam” and inspired by Helmut Newton’s poolside works, one of the most anticipated summer shindigs on the city’s social calendar served up a sneak peek of the Greta Constantine Spring 2014 collection, an endless stream of Stoli cocktails, and delightful shenanigans like models in glamourous gowns gracefully swimming laps in the pool. No big deal.
Anita Clarke tweeted the day after the event, while presumably still basking in its afterglow, “Always thought models in gowns in a pool was 1 of those things you see in movies. Thx @gretconstantine for making it happen”. Ditto!
Greta Constantine’s Stephen Wong and muse/hostess Krystal Koo
Bloggers Caillianne and Samantha Beckerman
FASHION Magazine’s Caitlin Agnew and Paige Dzenis
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Sisi Penaloza, Anita Clarke, Vicki Hogarth, Gail McInnes and Andrea Bolley
Hats, horseshoes and bow ties, oh my! On Sunday, July 7, Woodbine Racetrack held the prestigious Queen’s Plate, the first leg of the Canadian Triple Crown and one of the most exciting sporting and fashion events of the summer. After a month long countdown and one of the most epic contests we’ve hosted to date, we at The Backseat Stylers were delighted to finally attend our very first Queen’s Plate, and it turned out to be everything we dreamed it would be and more.
Outfitted in our chicest race day garb and exquisite fascinators by #QP2013 official milliner David Dunkley, we arrived at Woodbine for an afternoon of horse betting and street style snapping, both of which were great successes by our measure. The gents were more dapper, the ladies more fabulous, and the hats bolder and more bountiful than we’d imagined. Midnight Aria and jockey Jesse Campbell may have crossed the finish line first on the racetrack, but there were too many sartorial wins to count off the track.
We fell in love with Stylist Box co-founder Gail McInnes‘ gorgeous violet hat by Midence Oliu, adored bloggers Richard Fabregui and Marc Piercey‘s matching dapper bow ties, and were in awe of Jake Mossop‘s amazing tailcoat and top hat getup. We also oohed and aahed over iVillage style expert Sarah Francis‘ Gatsby-esque head jewels, squealed over our contest winner Kimberlee Montgomery‘s navy lace frock, and bowed down to blogger Kimberly Lyn‘s perfectly colour co-ordinated pant ensemble, which rightfully won best dressed honours from FASHION Magazine. As for our favourite headpiece of the day? Definitely the patriotic, red and white ‘O Canada’ hat – another David Dunkley creation – donned by on-duty CBC journalist Monika Platek, who doubled as our lovely Hats & Horseshoes Party host.
From cheering on our race horse picks in the grandstands to admiring fascinators in the invite-only Grey Goose Lounge, Queen’s Plate 2013 was a horse racing and fashion extravaganza, and we loved every single moment of it. Missed out on the fun this year? Don’t fret – #QP2014 will be here before you know it! In the meantime, check out the gallery below for 40 style snaps of racing fashion at its best from this year’s event.
Steven Carver, Chenessa Lam, Viktoria Szyling, Lance Chung, Sharad Mohan, Joe Reaves
CBC’s Monika Platek interviewing yours truly
Blogger Kimberly Lyn and FASHION’s Paige Dzenis
Our Queen’s Plate contest winner Kimberlee Montgomery (centre) and her BFFs
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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, FashionMagazine.com
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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On October 18, the Canadian Opera Company held Operanation 9: Sweet Revenge, the 2012 edition of its annual fundraiser in support of the COC’s Ensemble Studio, its training program for young opera professionals. Operanation 8 was a fabulous fusion of music and fashion, and this year’s event was no less so. Toronto’s social set flocked to the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts for an evening featuring performances by none other than Canadian songbird Nelly Furtado and the 2012 Juno winner for Group of the Year the Arkells.
Vibrant prints weren’t on the dress code, but it sure looked as though it was: Knot PR’s Amy Burstyn-Fritz donned a beautiful Erdem gown, FASHION Magazine‘s Paige Dzenis chose an eye-catching abstract-print frock for the occasion, and Monica Mei sported a gorgeous floral-print and sheer number of her own design. Black and white was a favourite among the chic guests as well, with Rac Boutique’s Faith Orfus balancing an uncharacteristically girly lace dress with Balenciaga boots, jewelry designer Jenny Bird stepping out in a frilly lace top and suspendered pants, and actress Gabrielle Miller looking downright stunning in a design by Lucian Matis.
Operanation 9 was both a feast for the eyes and the ears. How will the COC top it next year? I can’t wait to find out.
Knot PR’s Amy Burstyn-Fritz and Rac Boutique’s Faith Orfus
AIME designer Monica Mei
Jewelry designer Jenny Bird and guest
FASHION Magazine’s Paige Dzenis
Actress Gabrielle Miller
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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