It’s that time of year again!
Fashion Group invites members to shop, mix and mingle in the spirit of the holidays on Tuesday, November 26. Town Shoes has kindly offered to host our event at their flagship store, so expect some fantastic discounts and prizes.
Need an outfit for the holidays? Rent Frock Repeat will bring a pile of great dresses to suit you up for the party season or for the inaugural Canadian Arts and Fashion Awards (CAFA) on February 1, 2014. The Beauty Team will be on hand to offer touch-ups throughout the evening. CAFA nominees and committee members have been invited to join us, making this a one-of-a-kind industry party.
Open to members only. Forgot to RSVP? Email email@example.com.
This one is for the boys, and those who sell to boys. Join FGI Toronto at the Thompson Toronto for an intriguing evening of insight into the connection between all elements of trend; from developing consumer behaviors, design megatrends and forecasts, to global street styles. Online registration is now open for members and non-members on Eventbrite.
Jeremy Laing, Greta Constantine, Bustle, Sunny Fong, Kimberley Newport-Mimran – what do all these designers have in common, other than being Canadian? They’ve all designed employee uniforms for Canadian companies.
Join Fashion Group Toronto on Tuesday, October 15th as we explore corporate branding through the lense of employee uniforms and fashion’s role in uniform design. FGI board member and fashion branding lawyer, Ashlee Froese, will lead a panel discussion on the diverse challenges companies face in outfitting their employees and how fashion designers are making their mark. We’ll also delve into the copyright concerns surrounding employee uniform design.
Panelists include Deirdre Kelly, The Globe and Mail; Greg Hewitt, DHL Express Canada; Laura Di Marcello, Porter Airlines and David Mounteer, Thompson Toronto.
Tickets are available for members ($25) and non-members ($40) on Eventbrite. Members of the media should contact firstname.lastname@example.org for accreditation.
FGI Toronto returns to its regular programming on Tuesday, October 8 with Ethical Beauty at Green Beauty Boutique, Spa and Hair Salon (3471 Yonge Street). After cocktails, networking and a mini-spa experience, we’ll explore how some health and beauty companies are taking a stand on specific issues, what consumers are demanding from beauty products and what that means for the industry.
Who doesn’t love summer?! We definitely do. After hosting three fab events in June and July, we’re taking a well-deserved break from programming until September. But that doesn’t mean we aren’t secretly planning how to make the rest of 2013 as amazing as the first half.
This fall you can expect more great networking events and a new business roundtable series from Gilbert’s Law. We’re also eager to spotlight our newest sponsor Jamieson Vitamins in an exploration of ethical beauty. And what would a trend event be without our favorite trend forecasting company, Stylesight? Mark your calendar for November 5th boys, this one’s for you!
Summer is a great time to join FGI. Your annual dues will be prorated for the year and you’ll get to enjoy member rates at every event this fall. Click here for more information on how to join this illustrious organization. Or join our mailing list to keep tabs on all FGI Toronto news and event.
Until next month, stay safe and don’t forget your SPF.
By Anthea Tsoukalas
When Alexandra Wilkis Wilson of Gilt.com came to Toronto last month for a meet, greet and book signing, I was thrilled to have an opportunity to interview her. What an amazing privilege to meet one of the most successful and talented women in the fashion business. Her list of accomplishments goes on – speaks five languages, is an avid traveler, successful entrepreneur, Harvard MBA grad, business woman, mother, wife and co-founder of a billion dollar company, Gilt.
What does it take to become a leading entrepreneur in the fashion e-commerce world and what role does an organization like Fashion Group International play in its success? These are just some of the questions I had for Alexandra.
She immediately made me feel calm and comfortable as we began the interview process. She was cool, articulate, humble and gracious in the short 15 minutes we had together. It was one of the most inspiring moments for me and I hope it is for you as you read our interview for FGI Toronto.
AT: You have spent a lot of your time giving back to organizations like Dress for Success and Fashion Group International. How have you been involved and what role have they played in your career?
AW: Dress for Success is something I have been passionate about and involved in for many years. I actually met my husband at a Dress for Success event called YES which stands for Young Executives for Success. It’s a very meaningful organization and I have been on the board now for several years.
Dress for Success empowers women who have had to live through difficult circumstances. Not only does it provide clothing for women joining/re-entering the work force, but it also gives them the confidence and tools they need for interviews, strategies for their first few weeks on the job and opportunities to refine their skill sets. Dress for Success involves two areas I am passionate about: the fashion and beauty industry and empowering women to be successful in their lives.
I have been on the FGI board now for 4 years – I initially got involved when I was building GILT. It enabled me to build a personal network and to gain access to more brands, during the early stages of building the company. I also wanted to be more involved with FGI to help new industry professionals gain awareness of the organization. FGI is important for me and my job; it allows me to continue to educate myself on retail, fashion and technological trends and is also a chance to meet executives and attend fun events.
AT: What’s your perspective on female role models/mentorship?
AW: I think mentorship is incredibly important and valuable. I have been mentored and have also been a mentor. I am involved as a mentor with a lot of fresh entrepreneurs starting businesses, many of them women, but not necessarily. There are many executives in fashion and technology who have given me many great pieces of advice since starting GILT. These mentors have become friends over time. Mentorship is an organic relationship that evolves over time and often happens when the mentee reminds the mentor of themselves in a previous stage of their career.
AT: You have seen online fashion e-commerce sites like The Peacock Parade develop in Canada over the last few years. Where do you see e-commerce going in the future?
AW: E-commerce and fashion are in a really exciting place right now; they are at an intersection of the digital and fashion worlds.
Mobile commerce is critical to success. Brands that figure it out are the ones that will ultimately be successful. Global perspectives have been very important to GILT. Currently over 40 percent of our business is happening through mobile devices globally and that number will only grow. We are focused on creating a mobile culture first and many of our business decisions are based on this culture and how it will look and feel on a mobile phone screen.AT: What advice do you have for young women looking to find that work life balance?
AW: There isn’t a daily balance. It’s more about balance over period of time. Luckily my parents and family are in New York and my husband is a very involved parent. He has predictable hours and is home weekends. It is really hard to do anything alone, you need a support system.
My advice to the next generation trying to balance personal and professional is to try and figure out early in your career what you love professionally and hopefully work won’t feel like work. Find what you love and be passionate about it. You only live once, so love what you do!
AT: One of the mottos/quotes you live by?
AW: Seize the day. Try to live in the moment. The worst feeling is to be somewhere wishing you were somewhere else. When you are somewhere, embrace it, get as much out of it as possible. When you are in the office, be there; when you are at home, be there. Ultimately your life will feel much more fulfilling. Seize the moment.
After media interviews, Alexandra joined FGI members at Vertical Restaurant for more book signings and reception. Check out the photos on our Facebook page.
FGI Toronto and SAS Canada host a presentation by Gwen Morrison, Co-CEO The Store, WPP’s Global Retail Practice, on how technology is altering retail landscapes. Gwen will take us on a tour of innovations that inspire the digitally enabled shopper. The presentation also shares a glimpse of new technologies that have the potential to disrupt and redefine shopping. Individual and corporate pricing available above.
6PM Cocktails & Networking
Individual tickets and corporate pricing are available at http://fgiretail.eventbrite.ca/.
Registration is open for our Christian Louboutin event on Wednesday, June 26th at the Design Exchange. FGI Toronto will take over the DX for a private evening full of fashion and fun. Guarantee your spot by purchasing your ticket today. Our member rate is available for FGI and DX members.
Anyone who has been to FGI Toronto events will fondly remember Lynne Tyrrell. She was hard to miss with her hats and dazzling smile. We are sad to hear that Lynne is no longer with us. Below is the obituary that first appeared in the Toronto Star.
On May 25, 2013, Lynne died peacefully at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto after several weeks of illness. Lynne was an amazing woman who lived an incredible life. Born in England in 1920 she lived through the Second World War in London, refusing to go to an air raid shelter, lived for several years in Jamaica and in 1950 moved to Toronto where she spent the rest of her life. A very successful couturier, her BARONESS shop was located on Bloor Street in the 1950′s and 1960′s, then in Yorkville and finally on Scollard. She was a wonderful designer and in her 90′s was still a member of the Toronto Fashion Group.
Lynne was predeceased by her husband, her beloved Ronnie, in 2003 and by her children Marvin in 1994 and Harriett in 2008. She is survived by her sister Dena Colin and her brother David Marvin, both of London England; her daughters Geraldine Stringer and Naomi Tyrrell, both of Toronto; she was much loved by her grandchildren Szos St. Germain, Justine Carey, Jason Stringer, Noah Malcolm, Simone Sepic, Nic, Tyler and Taryn Tyrrell; and great- grandchildren Jaime, Steven, Clio, Christopher, Jack, Georgia and Kya. Lynne will be missed. Her vibrant personality, cheerful attitude to life and ability to be the life and soul of the party will not be forgotten. A private funeral will take place this week and a celebration of her life will take place in the next few weeks.
Messages of condolence may be left at www.aftercare.org In lieu of flowers, donations are welcomed to Seneca College, Newnham Campus for the Fashion Arts Programme, 1750 Finch Ave. East, Toronto, Ontario M2J 2X5.
By Anthea Tsoukalas
On Tuesday, April 29th, fashion and vintage lovers gathered at the Stephen Bulger Gallery on Queen West to listen to entrepreneur and vintage expert Cherie Federau of Shrimpton Couture talk fall trends.
Fashion is a world of re-cycling, re-using and modernizing as designers continue to look to the past for inspiration. As a consumer, it can be daunting to incorporate vintage into our modern wardrobes. This presentation provided FGI members with an in-depth look at some of the most popular trends throughout fashion history, the designers who created them and how they influence fashion today. After the vintage presentation, Cherie she shared her experiences as an entrepreneur and her advice on how to grow a business and look fabulous while doing it!
Cherie and FGI’s Regional Director Leesa Butler co-presented a brief talk on the top 7 fall fashion trends to show how relevant vintage can be today.
Top Fall Trends for Vintage
The return of velvet is upon us – except fabrics are now lighter and lines even sleeker.
Marc Jacobs continues to revive the plaid look. Cherie brought a vintage plaid bacon and eggs dress!
Cut outs were everywhere at the Oscars and other big awards shows this season. Cherie showed us a beautiful Pierre Cardin flash dance look as well as a vintage backless Versace. Today, modern advances in fabric and textile manipulation allow for improved cut out styles.
Hand Sewn Details/Sophistication
The fashion industry underwent a period of borrowing throughout the last few years. Today, designers are focusing on the details, quality and fabrics created by hand. Cherie provided Halston as a great example of a vintage designer known for few seams, details and quality garments.
This year we saw graphic prints at Sid Neigum, Joe Fresh and Pink Tartan at Toronto Fashion Week.
Animal print is still popular right now and we have seen it especially in those animal print loafers many shoe brands sell. We saw a beautiful Ossie Clark piece made entirely of Python. “You have to have at least one good animal print in your wardrobe,” says Cherie. “You can work it into any outfit!”
Classic – Dior
For the final theme, Cherie chose one of her favorite and one of the most classic vintage design houses, Dior. The design house has a quiet and everlasting impact that shows in the shapes we see now in other designer collections. She showed us a beautiful unlined Dior opera coat, made to fit.
Vintage Tips from the Expert
Incorporate vintage pieces into your wardrobe – avoid wearing an entirely vintage outfit.
Buy only what you love!
See all the photos from this event on our Facebook page.