Thursday, October 10th, 2019 – Vancouver, BC – From dark as night blacks to romantic florals, Thursday night was a night to remember with a stand-out array of eclectic collections.
LaSelle College Vancouver showcased multiple S/S20 collections as a group, with their works complemented by striking videography. Audience members were treated to the creative designs of Underground Underdogs, Aqua Eduardo, Rapture Razane, Misled Confusion, Crashed, and Gravity. Each collection was a branch of the designer’s personalities—infused with different interpretations and colour palettes. From the punk rock style of Underground Underdogs and the eccentric visuals of Misled Confusion and Crashed, LaSelle College introduced the fourth day on the runway and they did not disappoint.
Ellen Wise’s latest collection highlighted the designer’s expertise for handcrafted elevated haute couture. Femininity dominated the runway in Wise’s collection Color, Music and Light which transported the audience to a utopian baroque paradise. While maintaining a rich opulence, Color, Music and Light also encompassed an easy breezy island vibe. Models adorned in ornate and meticulously tailored gowns fluttered down the runway with metallic shimmers beaming like rays of light. Stirred by the breathtaking ceiling of the Opera Garnier painted by legendary Marc Chagil famed for his brilliant use of color, Ellen Wise lead the audience down a psychedelic stroll through the gardens of Versailles. Stunning silk, tulles and lace created a bursting vibrant garden that was the perfect combination of romance, whimsy and femininity.
Drawing inspiration from her own life experiences, former model and current fashion design student Artemisia Hwang brings a collection brimming with darkness and drama. Focusing on texture and structured design, Artemisia’s SS20 collection is composed entirely of dramatic black pieces, save for one stunning ruby red dress at the center of the collection. The dark colours combined with light and airy chiffon touches create a beautiful symmetry between rigid darkness and light femininity. Artemisia’s use of textured fabrics and inclusion of leather, chiffon, wool and velour evoked a desire to reach out and touch the exquisite pieces.
Seyit Ares’ collection made an electrifying entrance, starting off with a model adorning a long silver metallic coat whipping her belt on the stage. Bondage wrap-style dresses, a tutu, one shoulder jumpsuits, and sparkles cascaded down the runway. The designs’ unpredictability drew everyone in as the metallic pinks and silvers flowed into metallic blues and sparkles. When two models walked side-by-side in inverted colours of the same look, it proved Seyit Ares’ creativity was set to shine through until the last strut.
Raw, Fragile, Honest, and Loving - these are some of the words to describe Diana Rikasari’s collection J’Aime l’Autisme. Rikasari’s son has autism and her collection is a reflection of how she interprets how autistic people feel - how fragile their feelings are, yet how they are some of the brightest people you will meet. Rikasari’s collection was filled with sheer and textured fabrics used to demonstrate the fragility of autism while also incorporating strong silhouettes to create a meaningful piece of work. Models’ faces were painted blue with colourful printed pieces, some with even dramatic designs like hearts hanging from around the neck. They almost resembled superheroes on the runway.
Bulgarian based designer Femmka showcased her S/S20 collection, which featured minimal billowy looks. Femmka believes fashion designs are a game between two main players—imagination and inspiration. Her collection consisted of black and white linen fabrics, draped over the models’ shoulders and finished with gladiator sandals. The looks are freedom-inspired, free from form-fitting clothing standards, and breezy. Most of the pieces had between two to five pockets, and in a light colour palette of white, black, and olive green.
Frankfurt based designer Lea Shweinfurth has been challenging the fashion industry by bringing together sustainable values with her contemporary cheeky vision. NOT_A_STUDIO burst onto the runway with creativity and fun. Models morphed the space into a powerful platform for the practice of sustainable fashion with a playful display of the universality of each piece as textile jewellery. Founded on the notion of recycle and reuse, NOT_A_STUDIO’s clothes are made from disposed garments from TexAid–one of Germany’s largest textile separating plants and manufactured to stand the test of time. Each piece is crafted to be a timeless staple to be worn on top of clothes as accessories. Shweinfurth’s collection brought to the forefront creativity and individualistic expression with pieces that are gender and size inclusive that function as add-on apparel. The future is here.
Love is universal. That is the message carried by Golden Skyy’s SS20 collection. Filled with rich jewel tones, black , silver and gold, the collection transports onlookers to another planet with its futuristic designs. With pieces for both men and women, from comfortable leggings and sweaters to metallic jumpsuits and evening gowns, This collection has something for everyone, including the monogrammed overnight bag to pack your next look! Whether you’re off to work in one of their black and gold jumpsuits, complete with golden hard hat, or intergalactic royalty on the way to the ball, Golden Skyy has you covered! As the show comes to an end, models hold up signs that read ‘love wins’ and passed out roses to audience members, driving home the message behind the designs.
CHIDO was founded by designer Chido Dimairo with the intention to share her Zimbabwe-New Zealand upbringing. CHIDO produces ethical and affordable luxury garments, and presented a beach/resort wear line for her S/S20 collection. Her eco-friendly outfits used playful rompers and knit sweaters for laid-back looks. Focussing on earthy tones, CHIDO presented seafoam greens, light blues, and whites, with stripes and straw hats. From Zimbabwe origin, chido means “love, desire and wish.”
Who said comfortable clothing can’t be stylish and chic? Brunette the Label embodies the ‘cool girl’ with their trademark being sweatshirts saying Brunette and Blonde or effortless plaid pants. Miriam Alden founded the brand over 10 years ago with their flagship right here in Vancouver. Her mission is to change the meaning of the word “babe” to something positive demonstrating loving yourself and spreading kindness, which in fact represents the babes supporting babes mentality behind the brand. Brunette the Label showcased their collab with popular brand Juicy Couture at Vancouver fashion week, with hip music and cooler than ever models; the brand truly expresses the perfect fun and fearless lifestyle initiative right here in our backyard.
Latin American designer Maria Venturini set the stage for romance with a seductive collection of perfectly tailored soft pieces made to celebrate the female form. A monochromatic blush army marched the runway with designs defined by their fluidity and movement that crashed the stage like waves hugging the shore. The Soft Whisper collection drew from nature and used a blooming rose as its muse. A range of textures and silhouettes in the most perfect blush nudes were often accentuated with glints of glam with metallic mirror accents in rose gold and gold. Venturini offers a subtle ode to all that is womanhood.
The generosity and commitment of our sponsors, suppliers and supporters is more vital than ever. Please help us by acknowledging their support for Vancouver Fashion Week October 2019. Thank you to Redken, Ken kozuki, Jean Paul Gaultier, Hungry Guys, and Sole Vodka Water.
Photos credits: Vancouver Fashion Week via IMAXTREE
Header Image: LaSelle College Vancouver, Maria Venturini, Brunette the Label
Article body image: Diana Rikasari, Ellen Wise, Seyit Ares