EDITORIALS, TRENDS + DESIGNER PROFILES
By Mark St. James - Marquis of Fashion
Fur: the facts, the controversy, the fashion! The use of fur in fashion has become such a point of contention that it leaves most designers coughing up fur balls. But when was the last time we took a step back from the anti-fur mob mentality, and took a look at the facts surrounding the topic? In my previous article in Phabrik Magazine I focused on the growing movement in Eco-fashion and sustainability within the fashion industry. It may shock you to learn just how Eco-friendly the use of fur can be. Having always been one to make up my own mind, I embarked on a mission to determine fact from fiction and propaganda from reality in order to shed some much needed light on this highly debated topic. After a tremendous amount of research, I have to say, I am pro-fur... no sense beating around the bush. Now, before you condemn me, hear me out. For Your Consideration: Have you ever stopped to consider the impact petroleum products have on the eco system? It’s interesting, if not confounding that so many people are eager to jump on the fur trashing waggon, yelling on their megaphones, and holding up signs made of wood, plastic, and paper when in reality, forests where cut down for those signs and entire ecosystems where moved or destroyed for the oil necessary for the plastics and other synthetic materials that produced the marker that wrote the message. How many animals were harmed so protesters can protest?Why not use synthetic fur in place of theanimals?As stated above the use of synthetics requires greater devastation then using the real thing. Fur only requires the use of an animals hide, the only environmentally harmful process in refining the fur for use in fashion is the dying process which is optional, and may be substituted with organic dyes. Now before we move on, I want address the fundamental issue surrounding fur and the reason it is such a heated issue, the ethical treatment of animals. Obviously this a broad topic, so for the sake of this article, let’s keep it in the fur trade. There exists two important points here: 1) The quality of life of the animals living in a fur farm are regulated by laws set by governing bodies. These regulations ensure that the animals enjoy a life that is nearly as comfortable as that of a house pet. These laws are very specific and well enforced. 2) The misdirected protesting and lobbying against government regulated farms. This protesting has led to a number of fur farms closing up shop... a victory for the persecutors? Maybe in their minds; but sadly all that is being accomplished is a shift from controlled environments to the black market. This is where one has to take a stand, poaching and the black market sale of fur is abhorrent. The fact is, the demand for fur is and will always be present, in fact, it has been there all through history. With regulated farms, the treatments of the animals is assured, and without those farms, the black market flourishes. Rather counter-productive to put so much time and energy into closing fur farms especially when considering the consequences. It’s not unlike throwing red paint on a fur coat during fashion week... fur is typically insured... the coat will be replaced; Counter-productive. The More You Know: Fur farms account for 63% of all fur usage in Canada, this number is approximately 1.6 million pelts per year. Of this number these animals are cared for by the best veterinarians, they are fed a balanced diet every day, and they are cared for and monitored with the use of the regulated and legally required healthcare and breeding records. Unfortunately the 65,000 people working in the fur trade in Canada alone are under constant attack from Eco-fundamentalists who make it their mission to pass on misinformation which results in the loss of jobs and potentially the traditional art of fur crafting. At this point it seems moot to discuss the use of leather in fashion and how in the midst of all the hype, few forums touch upon the fact that the majority of anti-fur advocates wear leather products and eat meat. Fur Today: So with all this fur who is wearing it? I know as a fashion columnist and blogger I love to wear a fur stole or fur trim on my collars, cuffs, and hoods but who else is wearing fur? Many high profile celebrities wear fur such as Madonna, Sienna Miller, Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, and the list goes on and on but are celebs the only ones wearing fur? Since fur is found on nearly every type of outerwear on the trim of a hood etc. the masses are investing in fur from popular accessible brands like Andrew Marc, Danier Leather, and Canada Goose, making fur very practical. Although full fur coats are not as popular on the streets today, they are hitting the runways hard for Fall 2012. Nearly every collection used fur in some way and the shift in perspective is looking great. Noted fur advocate Karl Lagerfeld used fur in nearly every look at the Fendi Fall 2012 show. Other collection that invested in the trendy renewable resource were Marc Jacobs, Celine, Hermès, Yves Saint Laurent, Gucci, Zac Posen, and newcomer Altuzarra. With this much of the fluffy fuzz on the catwalk I can guarantee that it will be showing up more frequently on the streets; and if you can’t afford your own fur, simply dive into your grandmothers or grandfathers wardrobe and take out one of their old furs, or visit your local vintage shop. Remember, fur unlike other materials, is wonderfully resilient and can stand the test of time. You’ll often see fur being past down from generation to generation for over half a century or more. Once it has run its course, it is nice to know that it will degrade naturally and will not add to the tonnes and tonnes of cheap disposable synthetic fabrics that make up a significant percentage of our landfills. Finally, I have to pose the question, “What is more Eco-Friendly?” Fur? Or piles of non-biodegradable synthetic materials? Has the use of fur become so plagued with unnecessary guilt and misinformation that we would turn our backs on a proven, quality and sustainable material? In the Interest of Sharing, Fun Facts: - $800 million - The amount of money that goes directly into the Canadian economy from the fur trade each year. - http://www.furcouncil.com - 65,000 - The amount of people working in the fur trade in Canada. - http://www.fur.ca - 63% - The amount of Canadian furs that come from fur farms. - http://www.fur.ca - 1.6 million - The number of pelts produced from fur farms in Canada. - http://www.fur.ca - 1 billion - The number of cows that a killed each year for their leather. - http://www.peta.org/ - Hydrogen Chloride - The toxic gas released when creating synthetic textiles. - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov - 9% - The percentage of man made textiles in landfills. - 2020 - The year the world’s supply of oil and gas will fall below the level required to meet international demand. http://www.theinsider.org Warm, fashionable, renewable, environmentally friendly, regulated...FUR.
By André Deveaux
The catwalks were awash with color and prints, with the atmosphere one of true summer fun in the sun. Innovative materials and the reinterpretation of traditional ones, such as the net processing on leather, was an overreacting trend. What was most significant however were the more architectural innovations and the reworking of traditional tailoring and proportions, which together bring to light a new fashion for spring/summer 2012. Nomadic Chic We are absolutely in love with this trend! We call this trend “Nomadic Chic” because it takes inspiration from a global collective from Japanese tailoring to American heritage. This trend definitely looks to push an individuals style by opening their eyes to cultures, places and people beyond their immediate proximity. We live in a multicultural environment which is precisely why we picked this as one of our 4 major trending categories. There are no real rules on how to achieve this look aside from taking a deeper look into your culture for inspiration and that of your friends. Fight for Bright Moving forward from the very masculine blue, other brights lit up the catwalks in Milan/Paris. Parrot greens, oranges and highlighter yellow contrasted with warm hues of berry. The trend is easy to wear: interpret it with knitwear or even leather, while for the more daring a few tailored suits in bright fluo pink color made an appearance on the spring/summer 2012 catwalks. All Meshed Up See through mesh knitwear seems to be man’s alternative to lace for women in spring/summer ’12. Sexy yet sophisticated, these knits are the perfect way to show some flesh and keep cool in the summer heat. Why not embrace the trend further and move onto netwear? In Dolce & Gabbana’s spring/summer ’12 collection the net is presented in different sizes, colors and materials and used either transparent or lined for jackets, trousers, shorts, T-shirts, bomber jackets, tracksuits and sweaters. Printed Elegance Prints, prints and more prints! If there is one trend you pick to follow this season then this is “it”. Almost every brand this S/S is indulging in some variation of this trend. Whether you’re mixing plaids with stripes, prints with plaids, solids with prints, or prints on prints, there are no limits to what you can do. How do you nail this look? Well, though this trend appears to have no rules we do suggest maintaining a base color scheme when creating your ensemble. This will enable you to piece together the right items for the perfect look.
By André Deveaux
Fashion is about evolution redesigning and rediscovering, creating new and revisiting the old. The revival of the 20’s with the Drop waist lines at Etro and Alberta Ferretti and the peblums at Yves saint Laurent shows the remix of the past, present and future of fashion. From Global traveler to Pastel princesses shows the eclectic styles of today and our direction of the fashion for tomorrow Bold Bouquets Florals are back again for spring/summer with more color combinations than ever. Mixing prints like at Dries Van Noten and Antonio Marras, and clashing color at Mary Katrantzou are the way to get your flower fIx this season. Pep Squad In a celebration of the female silhouette more collections than not had peplums involved. Whether soft like Céline, Acne and Yves Saint Laurent, or bold statements like Cushnie et Ochs and Jason Wu, the hips are where it’s at this season. Shine On Shiny fabrics and jewel colors are the loud and proud choice for those looking to make statement this summer. Be it green cellophane trousers like Theysken’s Theory or shimmying satin at Giorgio Armani, you really can’t shine too much. Gatsby Glamour With Baz Luhrmann’s Great Gatsby hitting cinema screens this year, the roaring Twenties is back in vogue. Gucci lead the charge with its deco flapper dresses with Ralph Lauren and Etro close behind. Global Traveller Bottega Veneta was hailed as one of the best collections of the season by editors, but there were plenty of others getting in on the tribal action too Donna Karan, Burberry Prorsum and Etro to name but a few.
By João Paulo Nunes
As it celebrates its third anniversary, label adidas SLVR continues to successfully reinvent casual and sports fashion in the form of a sleek and elegant collection of men’s and womenswear for Spring/Summer 2012. Under the creative direction of Dirk Schoenberger, the label’s current collection includes a series of minimalist garments where divergent shapes and themes abound to create flattering silhouettes. This is achieved in the contrast between clothes such as wide-legged pleated trousers and tight shirts and jumpers, or by resorting to asymmetrical hem lines contrasting with precise vertical and horizontal stitching. In addition, traditional tailoring is deconstructed by removing sleeves from suit jacket, by exploring the design possibilities of the staple white shirt, or by introducing fastening strips or zips in unexpected parts of a garment.
Photography: Harry Fellows www.harryfellows.com Styling: Cannon at Judy Casey www.judycasey.com Model: Paris at Muse Management Makeup: Chico Mitsui for NARS cosmetic Hair: Kozmo at Bryan Bantry Manicurist: Krysty Williams for Picture Perfect Nails First Assistant: Ijfke Ridgley Styling Assistant: Amber Stolec & Jorge Rublacava Location: Loft 402 www.loft402.com
Obakki | Smythe | Marie Saint Pierre | Serendipity | Kelly Madden | Malorie Urbanovitch | Paul Hardy | Lara Presber | Emogene Couture
By Beryl Bacchus
Designer Profiles - Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Edmonton, Calgary
By João Paulo Nunes
William Richard Green’s autumn/winter 2011 collection stands out for its eclectic influences and its intention to deconstruct the idea of luxury. This is done by resorting to strong influences from outdoors menswear and relaxed grunge tailoring. Green claims that the inspiration for the collection is the ‘Viking’ and its uncouthness as the antithesis of lavishness. However, it seems more accurate to describe his garments and accessories as paying homage to British sartorial tradition and to the rebellious urban tribes and subcultures of the second half of the twentieth century. In his promotional material, Green has indicated that his work is partly inspired by the free-spirited approach to life that he gained during his formative years in the English countryside. He was born in 1985 in Worcestershire, and spent his childhood and teenage years in that West Midlands English county before moving to London to study fashion. In 2009, he earned a degree from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design with a collection that he dubbed as ‘wearable manly menswear’. He also trained at London’s Savile Row, a world centre for menswear tailoring. There, he went through important training in pattern cutting and gained useful insights into sartorial craftsmanship. The academic training at Central Saint Martins and the skills that Green gained during his period of practical experience allowed him to embark on an ongoing process of questioning the more traditional mores of menswear and luxury. At the same time, there is little doubt that this young designer has been firmly embracing his British identity. This dedication is strongly evidenced in the decision to produce only in the UK and source fabrics predominantly manufactured in Britain.
By André DeVeaux
Workplace Cool Essentially the look which most despised, we saw it on the subways during the evenings rush hour and considered only for those who couldn’t keep their painful but appealing shoes on; this look has repeatedly been seen on our runways throughout the last few seasons, which means it’s here to stay well, at least for this season. Add a pair of clean sneakers to formal-trousers topped off with a leather duffle bag and varsity-style jacket, for a look which translates from work to a late-night gym session. Belted Waists Adding a waist-belt to the outer-layer of your outfit essentially “cinching the waist” can take your pieces in a new direction effectively jazzing up a relatively casual-look and giving it that formal edge; this however is not a look for everyone; it takes confidence and pure fearlessness to keep this from looking feminine. My recommendation is to stick to muted-colors and only add the belt to pieces that keep your torso looking masculine by nipping the waist and emphasizing the ‘V’/‘T’ shape of your shoulders and back. The belt should never rise higher than your belly-button area. Leather Vs Denim A trend that’s been bubbling under for quite some time now, maybe it’s the risqué feel of leather paired against what’s considered the epitome of comfortable fashion, denim. Whether it’s a denim jacket with leather sleeves or just simply a pair of leather trousers, add a dash of brawn to your outfits by mixing in a leather piece with some denim to create this spin-off biker style. PVC & Leather Pants Feeding off the current trend for all things daring in fashion, leather or PVC pants maybe both are the must have things to bring your winter wardrobe into 2011. Think slim and drain-pipe fits as opposed to boot-cut and straight-legs to keep this look looking fresh and not dated. Remember the key thing here when buying is to think quality not the cost, well within region. Don’t compromise too much or you may just regret it with a compromising split in the crotch area or the rear. Splash of Red Every season we have that ‘it’ colour, that colour that dominate the rails in trendy stores, that color that’s your first choice out of all the others, that color which feels like it just goes with everything, this season make that color Red. You may decide to go with a head-to-toe look or just opt for that one statement piece, either way make it red and get ready to paint the town. Short-Shorts Most are thinking why I would wear short-shorts in winter yet alone wear short-shorts at all; well this look isn’t for the faint-hearted however it will take you right into Spring/Summer 2012, also adding a refreshing twist to any tops you picked up earlier this year. The key to making this work is to glance back on where fashion has already been, think 80s-sportswear then add a 2011 short-short to it and your done. Blazers, Shirts, Polo-Tees, Vests, whatever you think suits will work, drop it with some luxury-sneakers, white slouchy-socks and you’re done. Short Shorts should leave at least 2-inches hanging room from your crotch-area when standing.