Vancouver Fashion Week F/W 13 - Day 3

All images courtesy of Peter Jensen Photography

Day 3 of Vancouver Fashion Week began early for me as I had lunch with photographer Garry Kettleson at Finch's Tea and Coffee House on Pender.  It was great to share memories of old times. We first met over 9 years ago, long before I began writing and just after my daughter walked in her first show at VFW. Garry was the photographer I purchased runway images from. Now years later my daughter has long ago walked away from modeling and Garry and I are still here. I can't think of a better way I could have started the day. By the end I had forgotten my cold and was fully energized and ready to watch the day's shows.  THANKS GARRY!

As we both ended up at the venue a bit early, it gave me time to change into proper heels and deliver some thank-you treats to the volunteers that really don't get a lot of recognition - those working the door, seating guests, selling drinks, hair stylists, make-up artists, runway coordinators and more.  We see the final efforts from this huge team as the show progresses with beautiful models on the runway looking sleek and fashionable, but those working in the hive of activity behind the scenes do so without any recognition.  So I try each season to take some treats for them to say THANK-YOU.

NOTE - Again I want to make it clear that I am only writing up a few designers each day that caught my eye for one reason or another. It's always hard to select who to cover as every designer puts their all into creating a show for the audience. Every person looks at fashion differently, so I encourage you to go to the VFW's list of designers with website links and check out the other brands that showcased each day. There's some amazing work not covered here to surprise you.


I haven't covered a lot of the ready-to-wear market at Vancouver Fashion Week which is a shame. As much as we all love to see drama and avant garde designs, ready-to-wear basics drive the fashion industry and in Vancouver there is nothing we all need more than a great coat and jacket.  Zareen is designed by Cindy Xin - an award winning graduate of LaSalle College.  She has worked with labels in North America and Asia and now is the creative force for Zareen, launched by her own Vancouver-based company, BC24 Fashion.  While there were a few very chic dresses offered, I think the coats made this line stand out. All were created from beautiful fabrics in a lovely palette with impeccable tailoring and good proportions.

Veejay Floresca

Philipine designer Veejay Floresca brings not only extensive experience to the runway, but a Masters in Fashion from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, international recognition through numerous awards received from around the globe and a place in the finals on Project Runway Philippines. Tailoring is obviously one of his strong suits as the garments shown on the runway were impeccable.  I loved his fabric selections, silhouettes and palette and found the collection as a whole impressive. There were many items I would love to add to my own closet such at the look 2nd from LEFT below.  The only hitch during this show for me personally was I did occasionally feel the styling could have been simpler to let the individual pieces shine. A few looks had a lot going on which I found distracting. But fashion truly is personal, so I am sure many would disagree with me. I hope to see this designer again next season - he was a great addition to the day!

Carole Mclellan

Carole Mclellan offered a great selection of men's and women's garments created from new and re-styled fur and leather. Although Seattle is her home base, this designer works and travels worldwide. Her favourite destination?  PARIS, of course! No surprise that her garments are sold in stores such as Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus and that a large part of her work is custom couture for high-end clients. I try to the best of my ability to wear synthetics as much as possible, but when the tall model came out in the long, beautiful coat in the image below 2nd from left, desire hit. It had serious runway appeal. This was a strong collection that showcased not only Mclellan's technical skill, but her eye in created just the right silhouette.

Pouneh Askarian

While I was starting to fade by the last show, there was no way I would ever miss seeing Pouneh Askarian. She was one of my favourite shows at VFW in April 2011 and has been on my mind ever since. Born in Tehran, with a fashion degree from Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Askarian decided to move to London to gain more experience at the University of the Arts London. On completion of this program in 2006 she offered a runway show inspired by Persian art, then returned to Canada to launch her first collection in 2007. The aesthetic for this brand is contemporary women who embrace different cultures - a fusion of many elements that creates exciting interesting silhouettes. The collection we saw on Friday is titled Gold Peafowl - "...a journey between Japanese Kimono silhouettes to Middle Eastern nature in a glamorous way." The look I want in my closet - the grey dress with the soft flowing silhouette below top right. I hope you enjoy the images from this collection as much as I did the runway show, but to get the full effect of this label you really need to see it up close and personal!