Thursday, March 23, 2017

Vancouver Fashion Week F/W 17 - Wednesday Shows by Designed by Beely, Hangjun Jo and Kakopieros

Image by Harry Leonard Imagery
Day two of shows started a little low energy for me as I was working on writeups for the previous day from 7 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. It's not just the words to write. It's receiving, formatting and adding the pics and any needed hyperlinks.

Then it's sharing across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, making sure all involved are tagged.  I love what I do, but it does take awhile and the reason my writeups are not longer.

When it comes to choosing what to wear each day, it's all about what looks good with my new edgy hairdo created by Myles Laphen of Avant Garde Salon.  What sets off that black accent? I first thought I would wear black all week, but yesterday decided to go in a different direction. My unusual
Image by Harry Leonard Imagery
colourful shawl is by Eco designer Elina Tan of Toronto. My printed leggings are by Vancouver's Some Product.  My hand-painted bottle cap earrings are by an African artist and purchased at a free trade store.  Last my not least, my little bag is by Geir Ness of Laila, the Essence of Norway.  It came filled with little samples of parfum and lotions, but I love to use it as a mini-purse.

The three designers I chose to feature here again offer a really wide range of aesthetics from very wearable to out of the box alternative - Designed by Beely, Hangjun Jo and Kakopieros.  I have a fourth show I want to cover separately - Toni Marlow - because it is the message behind the show that needs to be given wings!  It might take a day or two and I need to connect with the designers to do a Q and A.

Last but not least - four new Vancouver designers were added to my BUY LOCAL column, but the images may not go up until tomorrow. They are Lo Life x Lauren Kemp, Tima.G, Ginger & Flora and Kirsten Ley.  The Tuesday section of this column is now complete. You can check it out here - http://www.oliobymarilyn.com/2017/03/vancouver-fashion-week-fw-17-buy-local.html.

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Designed by Beely

Images by Harry Leonard Imagery








Designed by Beely is an independent women’s apparel and accessories label founded by its designer, Beely Huang. Her designs express a connection to nature and appreciation of minimalism through the emphasis on natural materials in organic hues. Beely caters to fashion-forward professional women, redefining classics to offer versatile, sophisticated styles with an edge. The combination of timeless, pared-down aesthetics with distinct features are the signature of this label.

Images by Harry Leonard Imagery


Beely finds inspiration from places she has traveled, learning to work with a variety of mediums including sustainable, re-purposed hides and furs using traditional sewing techniques for quality craftsmanship. She is also drawn to the blank canvases she sees in unassuming and often overlooked objects. She perceives beauty in the understated, and is interested in the ‘imperfections’ and unexpected features found within these objects. These challenge her to give bold voices to the simplistic.

Hangjun Jo

Images by Ed Ng Photography

"Hangjun Jo graduated from The Glasgow School of Art with a BA(Hons) in Fashion Design in 2016. Specialised in womenswear. His tasteful sense of colour, print idea and structural comprehension turn out to create contemporary casualwear, which contains elegance and masculinity at the same time. Especially his artistic background is transferred into interesting prints/ cuts and that makes details more unique. Currently Hangjun is a freelance designer and preparing for his first label HANGJUN JO." - VFW bio

Images by Ed Ng Photography

When you watch a lot of runway, it's always wonderful to have a designer offer a unique collection from a different viewpoint. Such was the case here.  I found myself sitting up in my seat and leaning forward to take in the smaller details. This collection was very architectural and the designer played with layering unique shaped separates in striking ways. He also mixed the palette of white, grey, pink, blue and black in in eye-catching ways. The stripe pattern seen in this collection was created by hand painting.

KAKOPIEROS

Images by Ed Ng Photography


"The work of Kakopieros embraces many human dichotomies—order and chaos, meaning and absurdity, light and shadow—to explore artistic, philosophical, spiritual and scientific questions. Designed to confront and alter viewer perceptions, Kakopieros is motivated by her need to address issues surrounding society's treatment of animals and the environment...Art is political and they are intrinsically connected to one another. My thoughts are inevitably tied to the aesthetic of politics. It fuels the very core of my work." - From the Designers VFW bio

Images by Ed Ng Photography


I happened to see this hard-edged collection doing their model run-through before the doors opened and was anticipating it all evening.  I love variety and I love surprise.  The opening video offering disturbing images, the individual garments and the way they were combined, the unique accessories from those featuring doll parts to facial hardware, the palette, the styling - it was all bang on. It was only after the show I had a chance to connect with the designer and learn a couple key elements. First was she had a team of 3 with her to pull off all these amazing looks. Second, her collections are motivated by politics. This one was a comment on human trafficking.

Images by Ed Ng Photography


I appreciate seeing fashion used as political art. It brings a physical impact that cannot be denied. Well done and a great way to end the evening. I am hoping to add a personal comment from the designer on this collection's focus as well as the names and credits for her truly talented team. So be sure and check back!

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