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It’s widely known that technology has prompted mass revolutions across a wide array of industries. Fashion, however, has yet to be extensively transformed by the various types of technology that have reordered other sectors, such as commerce and education. However, one notable trend has been slowly but surely gaining prominence, and is ultimately sitting at the forefront of the fashion-tech revolution; smart-clothing. Smart-clothing is increasingly being recognized in the world’s top tech hubs, with many Silicon Valley CEO’s making their move from technology-centric companies to the fashion industry, looking to disrupt and innovate the way they have previously done countless times. With some of the greatest engineers and fashion creatives in the world, it is not surprising that this trend has quickly hit the Canadian markets as well. Currently, Toronto-based luxury outerwear brand North Aware is sitting at the forefront of this change in the Canadian market.

CoF Founder Shenaz in her custom North Aware parka

  Founded by software engineer Jamil Khan, North Aware was built with the goal to create the most fashionable and innovative clothing in the world. Channeling both best-in-breed Canadian innovation and the infamous glacial winter weather, the brand’s signature smart smart-parka allows Canadians to truly enjoy the beauty of winter, rather than feel intimidated by it. By using his engineering and design skills to his advantage, Kahn created an outerwear piece consisting of tech tracker pockets, built-in gloves and scarf, length extensions, and Airpod holders, among 12 other features, to address every and any winter-wear need. This product showcases the way in which the combination of both aesthetic and innovation can create unmatched results, no matter the industry. Take a look at the full smart-parka features below: Even more impressive than designing both a truly functional and inherently stylish piece, Kahn leveraged the tech startup methodologies and philosophy to build his company in a manner that has yet to become mainstream to the fashion industry. By channeling the fearless creativity, questioning the key assumptions, and operating under the core values commonly found in the tech startup world, he created a truly disruptive product unlike anything previously existing on the market. This, in fact, was not lost by the public, with the smart-parka raising 3.5m throughout its Kickstarter campaign. Ultimately, it is clear that Jamil Kahn and the North Aware brand have not only created the perfect product to address Canadian winters but are a prime example of the success that comes from having a truly comprehensive paradigm. By leveraging experience from across a multitude of industries, the brand has strayed away from traditional while simultaneously working to ignite the fashion technological revolution within Canada. We can’t wait to see how the company will grow in the future and what trends they will disrupt next!

The post Have you Heard of the Parka Brand Disrupting Canadian Fashion? appeared first on Charter of Fashion.

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Réaffirmant son identité et sa position dans l’écosystème de mode montréalais, il y a seulement un événement qui réussi à unifier les designers et les entrepreneurs locaux les plus talentueux sous un toit où ils peuvent partager leur originalité en nous transportant dans leur univers créatif et leur vision individuelle de la mode. De plus en plus acclamé comme “la semaine de mode montréalaise”, Fashion Preview a présenté sa huitième édition à l’Agora Hydro-Québec au Pavillon Cœur des Sciences à l’UQAM du 17 au 19 octobre 2018. Né de la vision créative de sa présidente Emanuela Lolli, Fashion Preview est considéré aujourd’hui comme un rendez-vous incontournable dans l’industrie de la mode à Montréal. Effectivement, cet événement est non seulement un véhicule important pour la visibilité de la mode québécoise, mais permet aussi aux créateurs inventifs de bâtir des connections importantes avec de grands acheteurs, ainsi que des liens exclusifs avec des médias significatifs. En fait, ce sont des événements comme ceux-ci qui fournissent le support et la reconnaissance que notre talent local mérite. De plus, ils continuent aussi d’encourager et de souligner notre superbe industrie de la mode au Canada pour ensuite la présenter fièrement au reste de la communauté. Durant cette saison uniquement, Fashion Preview a été fier d’annoncer leur collaboration avec le Musée de la Mode. En effet, l’audience a eu la possibilité de découvrir une exposition temporaire intitulée “Une Soirée au Québec” qui présenta une rétrospective des robes de soirs des années 1940 à 2010 créées par plusieurs talentueux designers québécois. De plus, une conférence fascinante qui a mise en vedette Julie Buchinger, l’éditrice en chef chez ELLE Québec et Britta Kröger, consultante chez Simons Consultant, a eu lieu au Loews Hotel Vogue mercredi le 18 octobre à 13:00 où elles ont discutés de l’histoire riche de la Maison Simons afin de mettre en lumière l’implication de celle-ci dans la promotion et la commercialisation de la mode au Québec. Prévu à la programmation des 3 soirées palpitantes, ce grand événement novateur, fidèle à son engagement de promouvoir les prochaines générations de mode montréalaise, a accueilli les grandes écoles de mode dont le CÉGEP de Marie-Victorin, l’école Supérieur de mode de l’ESG UQÀM et le Collège LaSalle. Au début de chaque soirée, ceux-ci ont présentées leurs dernières créations thématiques issues de leur travail acharné de nombreux mois. Enfin, les pièces de résistances: les défilés tant attendus! Ceux-ci ont pu faire découvrir les collections printemps-été 2018 de 12 créateurs de prêt-à-porter ainsi que 10 créateurs d’accessoires de mode montréalais auprès d’un public émerveillé constitué de passionnés de mode, de blogueurs, de photographes et d’autres invités distingués. Nos coups de coeur: DUY, Oscar Mendoza et MARIGOLD La soirée d’ouverture a certainement fait un impact impressionnant avec cinq présentations dont le CÉGEP Marie-Victorin, Naïké, Holdur et DUY. Nous devons sincèrement admettre que le défilé de DUY nous a coupé le souffle avec ses “looks” éblouissants. Évoquant une richesse d’autre monde avec des tissus de qualité et des matériaux luxueux tels que le plumage et la dentelle, ainsi qu’un sentiment de futurisme grâce aux masques luminothérapies anti-acnés dû à la collaboration avec l’entreprise Neutrogena, il n’est pas surprenant que cette collection particulièrement audacieuse a évoqué des murmures d’exclamation à travers la salle.    Lors de la deuxième journée, l’audience a pu voir les défilés de l’école supérieure de la mode ESG-UQAM, Oneself, Coquette en soie, Oscar Mendoza et Helmer. Nous devons avouer que nous avons été séduits par la collection d’Oscar Mendoza avec ses “looks” puissants qui dégageaient une certaine confiance hors du commun. Finalement, la soirée de clôture a inclu le Collège LaSalle, Rémi Van Bochove, MARIGOLD, NICO et MARKANTOINE. Honnêtement, qui n’a pas pu tomber en amour avec la resplendissante collection sophistiquée de MARIGOLD avec ses coupes précises et féminines qui émanaient une si belle simplicité et élégance naturelle? Soyez à l’affût! Enfin, prenez-note! Le prochain événement se déroulera en février afin de présenter les collections automne-hiver 2019. Et avec le succès phénoménal de cette dernière édition, il va sans dire que Fashion Preview #9 devrait certainement l’être tout autant! Et vous, quels ont été vos coups de coeur des trois soirées? (Et oui au pluriel, puisqu'il est impossible que vous en n'ayez seulement qu'un suite à un tel événement). Laissez nous un commentaire ci-dessous ou via notre page Instagram.

The post MODE MONTRÉAL: FASHION PREVIEW #8 appeared first on Charter of Fashion.

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Charter of Fashion by Charteroffashion - 7M ago
The concurrent Toronto Men’s & Women’s fashion week, TOM* & TW, founded by Jeff Rustia, hosted their first edition of TOM*/TW Talks; a series of innovative discussions and events where global industry leaders explore their unique perspectives on the trendy world of fashion and commerce. With discussions focusing on the shifting economy due to mass-consumption and direct B2C marketing trends, the intimate conversation series brought countless pressing topics to the forefront of discourse throughout the two fashion weeks. Invited by discussion moderator Roger Gingerich, The Charter of Fashion attended the coveted one-on-one talk session with Canadian business mogul, Dragon Den’s Joe Mimran. Founder of Canada’s most iconic brands, Joe Mimran offered listeners a diverse assortment of candid insights based on his steadfast knowledge and experience within the industry on an International spectrum.

Roger Gingerich & Joe Mimran

  Roger demonstrated his 15 years of experience at the Gingerich Group, the infamous “fashion broker” ensured the navigation of his discussion was centered around relevant advice for Canadian entrepreneurs. As an executive member of the Canada Fashion Group and Fashion Group International -Toronto (FGI), he was well poised to lead a meaningful discussion that left listeners with tangible points of execution. Here’s what we learned...   A Prosperous Fashion Industry Depends on Governmental support: Policy & Education   In order for the Canadian Fashion Industry to rise to its International counterparts, the Canadian government must support and recognize fashion as an art worth nurturing and protecting. Joe suggested that the demand for luxury fashion is not appreciated in the Canadian markets because of this lack of infrastructure and the result is a lack of “appetite” among consumers. This concept is not foreign to the pioneer veterans of the Fashion Industry. Robin Kay the founder of Toronto Fashion Week was in attendance and has been a long-standing champion for this cause, she further challenged Joe to take a stance on this topic and reinforce the importance of community support from the ground up. Deidre Kelly eloquently suggested that perhaps the early education implementation from the primary school level could combat this lack of “appetite” within our culture and create a genuine appreciation for this unique form of art, fostering a true taste for luxury in Canada from a young age, and thus the ability for such brands to develop within our borders. Question is, will these voices be heard? What else can we do as an industry and community to band together and initiate much-needed change and reform

Brand Recognition; Entrepreneurial Super Power “There has never been a better time to be an entrepreneur than now”- Joe shed light on how social media was not available to him or other pioneers in the past and its rise has created the direct brand to consumer marketing. Building a recognizable brand and dedicated platform has never been so enabling; today’s business-minded influencers have the unique capability to avoid pain points that acted as key barriers to entry for entrepreneurs in the past previous years. Entrepreneurs who have facilitated an engaged authentic community can avoid the retail overhead while simultaneously communicating their message, and thus selling, directly to their customer.

Fashion is at the Forefront of a Technological Revolution “Technology is prompting mass systemic changes in the fashion industry”. The initial fashion technological revolution fostered the rise of e-commerce, resulting in the traditional retail business model sitting peripheral to its global-reaching counterpart. How will artificial intelligence and augmented reality truly impact the industry? It is feasible to predict another retail revolution in the near future, as the power of augmented and virtual reality is fortified. Conceivably, the consumption process may revert to an experience-centric exploit; advancing from the tangible experience of shopping in physical retail stores to a virtual yet realistic shopping experience projected directly from a customer’s device.

Joe Mimran & Charter of Fashion founder Shenaz Mohammed

  In an environment of increasing competition and innovation, it is clear to us that the need for unity, supportive infrastructure and resources is key to enabling prosperity for the Fashion Industry in Canada. Without these important progressions, it will be difficult for our Entrepreneurs to compete on an International level. There is no doubt we have talent, we need to nurture and showcase this talent even more!

The post TOM*/TW TALKS WITH JOE MIMRAN appeared first on Charter of Fashion.

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Charter of Fashion by Charteroffashion - 8M ago
Certainement l’un des événements de mode le plus attendu à Montréal, le Festival Mode & Design est de retour en force cette année du 21 au 26 août 2017 pour sa 15e année. Créant un événement d’envergure à ciel ouvert au coeur du centre-ville de la métropole, ce n’est pas surprenant que le festival accueil près de 300 participants et 550 000 festivaliers attendus à chaque année. Plus qu’un simple défilé, ce festival permet à la communauté de mode montréalaise et d’alentours diversifiés de pouvoir s’exprimer et affirmer leur présence en célébrant leur créativité, leur culture et bien sûr, leur amour et leur appréciation pour le monde de la mode. Proposant une programmation variée incluant plus de 50 spectacles, autant amoureux qu’amateurs de mode pourront facilement se joindre aux festivités et s'immerger à l’environnement unique qui offre une expérience décloisonnée des univers de la mode, du design et de l’art. Chaque année, de nombreux designers canadiens réputés, détaillants reconnus, talentueux créateurs émergents et d'icônes internationals de mode présentent leur créations, leur vision et leur art au souffle coupé du grand public. Parmi d’autres activités, les visiteurs ont l’opportunité d’assister à des défilés de mode, des séances de création en direct, des représentations de design, des conférences et des discussions d’experts de la mode et même des performances musicales. Coup de coeur: Marie Saint-Pierre – 30 ans de création Notre coup de coeur personnel? La conférence de Marie Saint-Pierre intitulé << Marie Saint-Pierre – 30 ans de création >>. Durant la petite heure (qui n’était clairement pas assez pour honorer la présence de cette icône de mode québécoise), la designer discute, en partie, de son parcours à travers les 30 dernières années. Un parcours, d’ailleurs, qui a inspiré le livre << Maison Marie Saint Pierre: en 30 tableaux >> écrite par la journaliste Madeleine Goubau, offrant une rétrospective de carrière inédite sur cette femme d’affaires artistique et innovatrice. Elle continua la discussion en décrivant ses inspirations et comment l’évolution constante des tendances et de la mode ont développés sa réputation à forte identité créative et son savoir-faire ici et à travers le monde. Finalement, on apprend aussi que sa sensibilité à des causes sociales (elle est la fondatrice de Sous Zéro, un projet qui vise à aider les femmes et les enfants dans le besoin) et environnementales (ses matières fétiches sont éco-compatibles!) l’ont guidé à initier non seulement un mouvement qui va bien au-delà des vêtements qu’elle crée, mais qui inspire aussi des nouvelles générations pour des années à venir. Enfin, le Festival Mode & Design est non seulement un rendez-vous unique au monde où tendances de mode, designs, beauté, magasinage et musique peuvent se mixer harmonieusement, mais il fournit aussi une opportunité où expositions originales, installations uniques en leur genre et expériences hors du commun peuvent se rassembler de manière égale sur une plateforme dominante. Évidemment, il va sans dire que la 15e édition du Festival de Mode & Design est encore une fois un succès phénoménal et nous anticipons déjà ce qui va s’en venir pour l’année prochaine! Et vous, quels sont vos coups de coeur du festival? Laissez nous un commentaire ci-dessous ou via notre page Instagram, @charteroffashion.  

The post Festival Mode & Design 2017 appeared first on Charter of Fashion.

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Charter of Fashion by Charteroffashion - 10M ago
She’s back and ready to take over the world of fashion. French Canadian singer, Celine Dion took over Vogue’s Couture Week video last week with her lively personality and sharp struts, and we are obsessed. The renowned Canadian performer has been making waves on the fashion scene for years, best known for her confidence in everything from haute couture to street style. Miss Dion recounted to Vogue that she feels more energetic and excited about fashion than ever. Her recent showcase embodied those feelings exactly, featuring a variety of timeless yet bold looks. Today, we bring you our favorite looks from the project.
"My energy feels younger, more dynamic, excited"
The starlet started off with red velvet royalty featuring a beautiful Valentino gown. Can we just take a moment to admire that train?! Emitting a Spanish-inspired ambiance, this Canadian queen wears a gorgeous head piece to complete that exquisite look. We're down to #SalsaWithCeline.  From here initial statement styling, she moved on to a softer look whilst still managing to stay fierce. Celine pulled off a powerful yet affectionate appearance featuring haute couture cotton candy elegance thanks to talented designer Giambattista Valli with all this lovely pink tulle. Taken at the Ritz in Paris, this scene is the epitome our Parisian dreams. And finally, we have Celine channeling Victorian sophistication in the streets of France. This art of Maria Chiuri Grazia screams diva, while the New Look silhouette skirt seems to have a mysterious feeling - like it may be full of secrets. Which one of Celine's look was your favourite? Let us know in the comments below or via Instagram at @charteroffashion.  

The post Bonjour Céline appeared first on Charter of Fashion.

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Charter of Fashion by Charteroffashion - 10M ago
Every Fall the popular and prestigious international film festival, TIFF, takes place in the heart of downtown Toronto, showcasing a carefully selected series of motion pictures. The week-long event is known for bringing film lovers together, along with talented filmmakers and artists alike. Not only is it a chance for directors to present their creativity and for fans to join their favourite celebrities in the premiere of their new films, but it also offers a spectacular opportunity for anyone involved to “play dress up, and have fun”. On this note, the special occasion grants favoured designers a chance to flaunt their latest work and highlight some of the season’s current fashion trends! Previous Fashion Trends at TIFF During the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival, we saw award winning actresses such as Callie Hernandez, Jennifer Garner, Anne Hathaway, and Kate Hudson walking the red carpet in style. There to premiere the film “Deep Horizon”, Miss Hudson certainly made an appearance in her corset-inspired Alexander Mcqueen gown. The sheer lace piece was given some sparkle with its flashy moon and star-shaped embellishments. After noticing that lace and sparkles were also seen on the beautiful Anne Hathaway, it seemed that floral lace and emphasized intricate patterns were the more prominent fashion trends of last year’s red carpet. There is no doubt that this Fall’s festival styles will be just as glamorous. How to Showcase Your Designs at TIFF 2017 For an emerging local fashion brand, it is less likely that your designs will appear on the red carpet. However, Stylist Box makes the impossible, possible. The exclusive showroom is located in the trendy DuWest neighborhood of Toronto, with clientele ranging from actresses such as Kim Cattrall to musicians like Nelly Furtado. Stylist Box connects both emerging and well-established fashion brands to top celebrity wardrobe stylists and overall high-profile personalities. The company has done a stellar job in revealing Canada’s hottest fashion and accessory brands at various red carpet events, live performances, magazine editorials and much more.   This week, Stylist Box is hosting an event in conjunction with the Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI) that educates emerging fashion brands on how to increase exposure and get their creative pieces onto celebrity figures! You’ll get to hear from one of their special guest speakers, celebrity stylist Renna Reddie, who has styled numerous events including TIFF and the Canadian Screen Awards. In attending, you will also be entered to win a spot in The Stylist Suite at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival! Do you have what it takes to dress the stars at this year’s red carpet? To learn more about Dressing the Stars, visit their website here. Photos by George Pimentel and The Huffington Post.

The post Dressing the Stars at TIFF 2017 appeared first on Charter of Fashion.

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Charter of Fashion by Amin Murji - 1y ago
Toronto-based luxury womenswear designer Mani Jassal has made quite the impression in the Canadian fashion industry with her distinct aesthetic fusing contemporary style with traditional South Asian fashion. With a label that prides itself in its innovative and artistic approach to melding her South Asian heritage with her Canadian upbringing, she most recently debuted her Resort ‘17 collection, alamārī. After a stunning presentation, The Charter of Fashion caught up with Mani to get the latest exposé regarding her most recent work. From her most prevalent inspirations and future vision for the brand, to creating her own culture, Mani gave us the scoop:  
“So what I have decided to do now is just create my own "culture" and my own market.”
  CoF: When and Why did you decide to get into designing? MJ: I remember the defining moment of my career trajectory: Sitting in grade 6 class, I wrote in my diary about the kind of art I wanted to create. Then I had an epiphany — I realized I wanted my art to be functional, and there was no art more functional than clothing. In that moment, I knew I wanted the world to wear her art, and with that, I turned the page and began sketching designs. This was the genesis of the MANI JASSAL brand.   CoF: How would you describe your design aesthetic? MJ: Unexpected fabrics, colour palettes, and ways of showcasing the female form have become my signature, and the rebellion conveyed through the designs have garnered a substantial social media following and fans all over the world. CoF: Notion behind the theme of your recent collection: Almari? what does this mean to you? MJ: alamārī, meaning wardrobe or closet in Punjabi, was the starting point for the resort 2017 collection. My very own alamārī set the tone for the collection, informing colour palette, mood, and attitude, and symbolizing the importance of self-reflection. The idea of a wardrobe collides with my recent inspirational discovery of Moroc- co: hand placed floral appliqués, beaded embroidery, textured fabrics, and draping bring to mind the country’s architecture, geography, and climate. The collection remains true to my aesthetic and approach to dressing, with every piece making a statement, and the ability to pair these pieces in myriad ways and across collections for ultimate versatility, originality, and individuality. CoF: What’s your 2-5 year vision for your brand? MJ: In 2-5 years I imagine the brand to have become more global and be retailing my pieces in stores worldwide. I would like to become a household name for women’s bridal and evening wear.   CoF: What can we expect to see from you in the Future? MJ:   I want to keep growing the brand, and be creating collections regularly. I would like to expand into RTW along with menswear - menswear is something that I have always wanted to venture into. CoF: How would you describe your design journey so far? Any particular hurdle/obstacles you’ve faced in the industry? and if so how do you plan to overcome them? MJ: There have been a few hurdles when it comes to having your own brand/company. In the beginning, it was very hard because I was the only one that was doing everything. I slowly started building my team and tasking things out. But I think the biggest struggle of them all has to be finding a place in the industry and finding out where I fit. I find that being a Canadian Indian, and having your pieces be inspired by both "worlds" leaves you in this strange middle ground. I find that when it comes to the Canadian fashion industry, my designs are too "ethnic" or too "Indian". When it comes to the Indian Fashion Market, my designs are too different, and when it comes to the Indian Market, I find that I don't fit in either because I am Canadian. I sometimes find myself being pigeon-holed into just a South Asian market because of my name. Just because I have an Indian heritage, does not mean I should only be limited to that market. My clothes are for everyone and anyone that can appreciate clothing - they are for the fashion forward woman.  So what I have decided to do now is just create my own "culture" and my own market, and I have many many girls that resonate with what I stand for.   Thank you, Mani, for taking the time to answer our questions. We wish nothing but success for you in the future, and are happy to be a small part of your journey!  
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Charter of Fashion by Charteroffashion - 1y ago
The Canadian Arts and Fashion Awards have undoubtedly made a name for themselves as the biggest night in Canadian fashion. Nicknamed the “Oscars of Fashion”, this prestigious event has helped place Canada on the international fashion map, having gained mass traction, from the New York Times to Vogue Italia. This night, dedicated to recognizing the hard work and dedication of both established and emerging Canadian talent, fosters the growth of a greater appreciation for Canadian talent at home and abroad. Take a look at some highlights from this year’s star-studded gala. Womenswear Designer of the Year This year’s prestigious Womenswear Designer of the Year award was presented to Beaufille - a label that aims to combine hard and soft styles to symbolize the contrast between masculinity and femininity in each of their pieces. This award is given to outstanding Canadian designers that have made a significant creative impact in the womenswear industry, and sister duo Chloe and Parris Gordon were certainly deserving. Menswear Designer of the Year The previous award’s counterpart, Menswear Designer of the Year, is similarly presented to a Canadian designer that has made a significant creative impact in the menswear industry. This year The Feral took home that title- and rightfully so. This luxury Toronto-based streetwear brand has made waves over the past year, subscribing to a non-conformist philosophy,  focusing on creating wild looks. Designer and creative director  Zakariah Milana earned this title and award by focusing his attention on innovating designs and creating pieces that resist any particular category, genre or box.   International Canadian Designer of the Year Among the most prestigious of awards presented throughout the gala, the International Canadian Designer of the Year award taken home by astounding designer Erdem Moralioglu for his label ERDEM. This award is presented to a designer that has achieved international success while simultaneously bringing global attention to the talent Canada has to offer the international fashion industry. Montreal native Erdem built his successful line by channeling both power and femininity in his pieces, and has become a household fashion name. The Fashion Impact Award Finally, the Fashion Impact Award is yet another extreme honour, awarded to a Canadian designer or brand that has made a significant philanthropic or social impact in the Canadian or international community - this year the title was given to Canadian fashion veteran David Dixon. For many years, David Dixon and his brand have leveraged his position in the fashion industry to collaborate with numerous social causes, while using his platform to bring awareness to programs or charities that are close to his heart. From Red Heart Truth, Sick Children’s Hospital, and Children’s Aid Society to Because I am a Girl, Dixon has partnered with countless charities and made a significant impact on many people’s lives year after year, making him the perfect candidate for CAFA’s Fashion Impact Award. Guests and Board And last but certainly not least, we  couldn’t complete this piece without mentioning some of the amazing guests attending this event. The Canadian man who has built a global platform by brilliantly showcasing the business side of fashion's Imran Amed, president and founder of the Business of Fashion was among this year’s honorary guests, alongside veteran Canadian supermodel Coco Rocha.     Furthermore, Rami Atallah, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of the innovative major online fashion platform SSENSE attended, acting as this year’s honorary chair. The fabulous board members did not stop there however, with CAFA president Vicky Milner dazzling in her gorgeous UNTTLD number.    Our very own Charter of Fashion and Fashion By Law founder Shenaz Mohammed attended the awards dressed impeccably in the latest from fellow Canadian designer Stephan Caras. Overall, this year’s CAFA gala was one for the books, with many more amazing events sure to be in the organization’s future. Our deepest thank you go out to Vicky and the rest of the CAFA team that work tirelessly to cement Canada’s place in the international fashion industry, and give a platform to the truly amazing talent in our domestic environment. 
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Charter of Fashion by Charteroffashion - 1y ago
Meet Jeff Rustia, the founder and executive director of Toronto Men’s Fashion Week and the newly launched Toronto Women’s Fashion Week. He has shaped Toronto’s name in the global fashion industry, and created a platform for both established designers and emerging talent to share their vision with the world. From a large charitable initiative to his vision for the city, this charismatic industry leader has worked endlessly to create a vibrant fashion scene in Toronto, driven by the love of Canadian fashion. By the sixth season of TOM* that just wrapped up in March 2017, this biannual event has made global waves. Being one of only eight men’s fashion weeks produced around the world, the week-long celebration of menswear is competing with international fashion capitals such as London and Milan, attracting the attention of GQ Brazil, Vogue Italia, and International partners such as Marriott Hotels. The week is filled with runway shows, amazing exhibits, lounge spaces, parties, and exclusive meet-and-greet opportunities. What makes this all possible? Aside from hard work and a dedicated team, Jeff explains Toronto’s niche; “There has been a huge cultural shift among men today. The modern millennial men are unashamed about looking good and loving fashion… because it’s intrinsically linked to dressing for success.”. Jeff has dubbed the TOM* man a modern day renaissance man of any age, ethnicity, or race - a man who is intelligent, influential, stylish, global thinking, and cultured. TOM* fashion week has been built off of those corresponding values, allowing it to flourish well into its sixth season, with many more to come. Recently Jeff launched the inaugural Toronto Women’s Fashion Week, TOM*’s female counterpart, or as he likes to call it; TOM*’s sister TW. This fashion week came with a new strategic partnership with Toronto Fashion Incubator, a nonprofit that nurtures Canadian designers, falling in line with a main mission of both organizations; to promote and support Canada’s next generation of designers. The opening event was a success, featuring top runway shows by leading Canadian designers such as David Dixon and Stephan Caras. Jeff hopes to take TW to the next level by incorporated apps, online shopping, live streaming, and VR into the upcoming seasons. “Giving and helping others never goes out of fashion” says Jeff. And he has stayed true to those remarks, introducing TOM*’s charitable initiative MensFashion4Hope, with a women’s version launching at TW in the upcoming seasons. This celebrity walk-a-thon fashion show raises funds to support children with disabilities through the Kol Hope Foundation for Children and SickKids, having raised well over $100 000 since it’s launch. Jeff believes in the idea that the TOM* is not just about style, but substance and giving back to his community. Why dedicate so much time to this? For Jeff it’s about a love for Canadian Fashion and the city of Toronto. Aside from making Toronto a name in global fashion and boosting the menswear and womenswear industries, he recognizes that the creation of these fashion weeks will also increase the economic impact and tourism in the city. Toronto and it’s incredibly creativity and talent deserve a spotlight, Jeff explains.

Jeff Rustia and Hans Koechling

 
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