Blogging as an outsider dipping her toe into the Vancouver fashion scene, with this, her first fashion show.
This was my first time attending a fashion show, let alone Vancouver’s own fashion week. My drive has never been to keep up to date on the latest trends, instead I was mainly here to support a friend who was has modelled in the show years past and would be participating in the week long showcase, and to increase my reach as a food & lifestyle blogger in our fair city. I would only be attending the one on Saturday, at the Chinese Cultural Center in Chinatown. The show started at 5pm with the option to come and go as you pleased in between breaks.
I dressed up as I would if going on a date, I figured this was the fashion world, let’s put some effort into this. After all, with all the cameras, you never know who’s background you might appear in.
We went there early to claim some seats. My blogger passes allowed me to skip the line to purchase tickets and walk right in to registration. There I was gifted a blogger card on a lanyard and a goodie bag from Moroccan oil, one of their sponsors.
The threshold of the centre was brimming with bodies. There was a showcase on the mezzanine. It gave you the ability to see designer pieces up close and to even try some on. And next to it was a vanity giving guests the opportunity to get their make up touched up by one of their make up sponsors. They also handed out pasties and stick on panties that models often have to wear under couture pieces.
The actual show was held in the gym. It was redressed with a large screen at one end and a white isle with assembly chairs on either sides. The bouncy beats the DJ was playing and everyone out in their finest, dressed the space up all the more.
My pass gave us the ability to be seated in any of the chairs within rows 2-6. Whereas many individuals were forced to stand or stare down from the upper deck, due to the over selling of tickets. We would eventually move about and end the show first row.
In between designer showcases guests got up and mingled on the paper runway. Many took photos dressed in their most fashionable outfits and accessories. Many more posed for photos with the models who walked the show and came to mingle still dressed in their pieces after their set. Here, I wish I had the ability to schmooze but what would I say? I don’t know anything about fashion, nor do I have the interest to pursue it. I am a long distance fan? But in the end I was just as content to stay in my hard claimed seat and people watch. There was much kissing and the embracing of many well dressed folks as they locked eyes across the room. But the best part was seeing what everyone else was wearing and either appreciating their moxie or questioning their pairings of colours and patterns.
The show of course started “fashionably” late, which equates to 30 minutes regular time. The following is a list of designers in participation and my photographic capture of their collections. I specifically zeroed in on my model friend @amodelwhosread as she appeared in two of the showcases this Saturday March 25th. The collections at the planned time of 6 and 8pm.
One of which turned out to be my favourite designer of the night: Misi Afrique. Her playful use of colours exuded energy into her designs. And when she came out on stage to take her bow, she herself was her clothing designs personified.
Some designers celebrated diversity not only with their clothes and it’s patterns, but by way of their models and the looks they represented. The crowd cheered for the plus size models and not just two or three of them. But a few collections featured many women who represented those of us who aren’t just a 0 or 2. And that was nice. And then there was the greying beauty who won everyone over in her pearl coloured slip dress, and the petite models who were still two heads shorter than the others in their platform heels. It was nice to see that fashion is for everyone.
I enjoyed the show as a spectator, viewing all the creations and acknowledging what I would wear myself. But as an outsider in the fashion world, here to support friend, (to quote another friend) ” it is like going to your child’s graduation. You just don’t care about the other kids. But are obliged to stay seated through it all.”
5:00 SARA ARMSTRONG started off the show as a local Vancouver designer. Her collection focused on textures and rust colours. The stand outs were the hoods a few models wore that obstructed their view with scrunched up plastics.
5:15 Kim Legler’s collection started spring ready with tee shirts, mini skirts, beachy prints and neon colours. A surprising theme considering her hometown being Yellowknife.
5:30 LIDIJA’s collection kept things simple with clean cuts and sharp lines. This was the most ready to wear line, in my opinion.
6:00 Misi Afrique had her collection built around bold colours and patterns featuring traditional African pieces and prints.
6:15 MAAK collection worked from day to night with tapered pants, lose fitting jackets, and asymmetrical blouses and skirts. Most memorable was the chain mail dress that was a collection of metal butteries, leaving not much to the imagination.
6:30 KO by Katherin Olivos was one of the largest collections to walk the runway. She had a little bit of everything for everyone. Not really a one size fits all theme. What held everything together was the use of glitter laden white fans by the models, to fan themselves with as they walked. They were later passed out to the front row crowd as Katherin took her bow.
7:00 TIELERJAMES’ collection came to the stage loud with music that asked if you knew who he was. I found the track garnered the attention he wanted for his collection with corsets, bell sleeves, and robes.
7:15 José Hendo focused her collection on sustainable materials, and urged others in the fashion industry to take a similar stance. The stand out was the use of seat belt fabric and clips as belts and necklaces, and as trim to line cloaks and boots.
7:45 Carolina Ferioli was a simple business ready collection, where it shone was in the detailed cutouts.
8:00 Gatsbylady London channeled the 20’s with beaded headbands and fringe trim on all its dresses. They showed off their versatility by having models of two different sizes walk down the runway together in the same dress, worn their way.
8:30 Jemmila’s collection looked comfortable in breathable and flowy materials. Lots of greys and black with a pop or two of red.
8:45 Pierrot-Emma Viedma
To watch a clip of my friend as she walked down the runway for Gatsbylady London, click below.