Vancouver Fashion Week S/S 16 - Buy Local

A few seasons ago I started to put all Vancouver, B.C., area designers in one column called Buy Local. It was a hit, so I am continuing the tradition.

Each day or two I add new runway shows to this specific article to make it easy for readers to see all local talent in one place. Because of the amount of coverage I am offering this week, time is limited. So to keep these going up quickly, I decided to offer their press release from the Vancouver Fashion Week (VFW) site instead of a personal write up. These are accompanied by their runway images.

If you want a thriving local fashion scene, there is only one way and that is through supporting local designers by making at least one purchase each season. Over time that will build into an amazing wardrobe of unique garments created right here in our city.

While there are many more designers locally than shown here, this is a great place to start.  Enjoy! And remember to Buy Local as much as you can.  You support great talent who offer responsible production.

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Sunday Shows - 

Je Vis Bridal by JCI Institute
Images by Peter Jensen Photography

Born and raised in Vancouver, BC, Bonnie Chung, Owner and Head Designer of Je Vis Couture and Je Vis Bridal, was the top graduate of John Casablanca’s Fashion Business and Creative Arts Diploma Program in 2006. Her original major was in Sales & Marketing, and she studied and graduated from British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) with a Diploma in Professional Sales & Marketing. Her fashion journey with Je Vis Couture started with designing custom evening gowns and cocktail dresses in 2010. After living in Los Angeles for a couple of years for inspiration, Bonnie returned to Vancouver with fresh ideas for her clothing line. Bonnie loves working with unique fabrics and would travel to cities, such as LA, New York and Shanghai to find the perfect textiles for her designs. In 2014, Bonnie decided to move to Toronto, Ontario, another fashion forward city within Canada. Upon launching Je Vis Bridal in that same year, Bonnie finds immense joy in working with her beautiful bride clients and helping them find their dream wedding dress. With great success and acknowledgment of Je Vis Bridal, Bonnie will be opening her first store front in Toronto, Ontario, in September 2016!

Sally Omeme by JCI Institute

Images by Peter Jensen Photography

Growing up in Central Alberta, Sally Omeme dreamed of working in Fashion. It wasn’t until her Mother taught her to knit, that she found her niche. While attending the John Casablancas Institute her instructors encouraged her pursuit of becoming a knitwear designer.

Sally Omeme upcycles textiles such as suede, leather, denim to create some of her knitwear designs, as well as knits with other fabrics such as satin, organza and various yarns. Her current collection was inspired by desert goddess, tribal woman, animalistic feel.

Images Courtesy of Harry Leonard Imagery
Sam Stringer is a 22 year old designer from Vancouver BC who combines traditional mastery with modern aesthetic to create elaborate and luxurious evening gowns. Recently receiving her BA in Fashion Design from Kwantlen Polytechnic University, she is proud to release her premier collection of evening gowns; Vesuvius by Sam Stringer. Her signature couture pieces celebrate local talent, including the work of artist Jack Wass in a fusion of art and fashion. She is also an internationally published fashion photographer who has had her work featured in over a dozen print and online publications, including many of her own designs in her edgy and sincere editorials.

Atelier Grandi

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

Saturday Shows - 

Model's Own

Images Courtesy of Harry Leonard Imagery

Models Own is an Eco aware brand based out of Vancouver Canada. Founder/designer Mishel Bouillet uses Eco friendly techniques to reduce the brand's carbon footprint without sacrificing quality or trend. It offers everyday wear which exceeds season and trend. These garments are meant to grow with the wearer. Each is versatile and timeless. All pieces are designed with a lazer cut finish to reduce excess waste.  Then blending technology with Eco friendly practice, the garments are hand sewn.

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

Unfortunately this designers loves to be mysterious so has offered nothing on the VFW site for me to share.  What I can offer is his name is Zong Peng and he's a very artistic, talented graduate of the fashion program at the Art Institute of Vancouver.  His show was called Give_Gift and the models walked the runway with absolutely no sound of any kind. You could have heard a pin drop - no one talked. The only note was the sound of the camera clicking.

Shelly Klassen for Blushing Boutique

Images Courtesy of Harry Leonard Imagery

Canadian Designer Shelley Klassen has built her 17 year career creating irresistibly feminine women’s clothing. In 2007 she opened Blushing Boutique, her 1500 square foot flagship store located at 579 Richards street in downtown Vancouver. Behind the scenes you will find another 1500 square feet of hustle and bustle…welcome to Shelley’s inspired design studio. Shelley’s passion being dresses, her collections offer a wide variety of frocks for all occasions and include exquisite separates where feminine curves meet beautiful tailoring. Shelley’s Blushing Boutique also offers on-site fittings and alterations as well as custom design and the atelier prides itself on creating the perfect fit for every client.

Thursday Shows -

Sinbi Collection

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

Katherine is a Vancouver based designer. From young age she was inspired with arts and design. Before launching her line Sinbi Collection in April 2016, she studied textile design and earned her degree at OCAD in Toronto. She continued to pursue her passion for fashion and completed fashion design at Helen Lefeaux and earned a fashion degree at Parsons School of Design in New York. After her studies, she started working in many well known fashion companies in New York and Montreal then decided to return to her hometown in Vancouver to achieve her dream of starting her new line.

The concept for SS2017 collection is focusing on poetic elegance, which represents calm and sophisticated ambience. It involves lot of sheer fabrics layered with emotional printed fabrics expressing mysterious femininity, emphasizing some of the beauty of women’s body lines. The color scheme of the collection includes black, pastel and metallic colours. Each individual garment has interesting shapes and details with some prints to make the collection look more special.

Alex S. Yu

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

I create garments that explore the fine line between reality and fantasy.

ALEX S. YU’s aesthetics rollick the happy emotions of childhood, nostalgia and wanderlust; and ponder the very definition of femininity in a modern, quirky way through garments. The ALEX S. YU woman loves to have fun, and isn’t afraid of trying new things. She loves colour, prints, quirky shapes, textures, and most importantly, values comfort. The ALEX S. YU woman is eccentric, lively, nonchalant and views life through a pair of rose tinted glasses. ALEX S. YU creates a line of contemporary luxury street wear that is ready-to-wear with a twist of avant garde experimental attitude. He plays with proportions, colour blockings and unusual silhouettes while mixing and using different colours and fabric weights in one garment.

Wednesday Shows - 

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

Kate Schreiner- the creator of ‘hetki / a moment’ is a Vancouver born and raised visionary and creative. She grew up being inspired by everything, and used sketching as a creative outlet. Kate became familiar with textiles based on a family history of seamstresses and tailors, and soon developed the same passion and interest.

During her studies majoring in Fashion Design & Technology at Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Wilson School of Design, Kate’s passion and understanding of what being a creative individual meant became stronger. After 9 years of formal textile and industry education in Vancouver, Canada and Helsinki, Finland, Kate refined her skills in conceptual and technical design, illustration, manual and cad drafting, production, draping, styling, event planning, marketing, and business.

After spending time studying fashion in Europe, Kate began to look at design in a new way; she focused on perfecting the process simply because the process is a greater learning tool- and once the process is perfected, the product falls into place naturally.

Kate’s brand, ‘hetki / a moment’ is derived from the root of Scandinavia. The inspiration for her collection came from her experience studying fashion in Helsinki. The Nordic and Scandinavian countries have a beautiful, peaceful, and slow-paced disposition, and an overall quality of lifestyle is appreciated and valued; Kate felt these attributes should be considered in the fashion industry. She developed her collection to encourage the growth of the slow-fashion movement by creating pieces that put an emphasis on quality, longevity, timeless, and uniqueness, and aesthetically blur the lines between seasonal trends.

Rebeca Dascal

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

I live in the beautiful Vancouver and it’s my passion and honour to add clothing beauty to people’s lives.

Clothes are the closest things to us, they represent us, our values and priorities. I always believed it’s better to have just a few that represent me, rather than many just for people to like me.

I want to help people people dress for themselves!

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

Founded in 2016 by Judy Wong, the Lorraine Sui Collection is all about bright colours, fun textures and playful sophistication. The mother-daughter design team was inspired by the culture and aesthetics of Vancouver to create a line of beautiful handbags to capture the essence of this city. Each handbag is crafted with durable materials, but also with hearts and the story of Judy and Lorraine working together to create and refine each piece. We continue to design and expand our line with our philosophy of modern design, strong construction and urban functionality.

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

April 2016 Q & A w/ this designer - HERE
Bahareh Memarian is a fashion designer based in Vancouver. She studied architecture at the Eastern Mediterranean University in Cyprus and got her Building Engineering Certificate from British Columbia Institute of Technology.

Realizing it was not the right career path for her, Bahareh decided to do what she had always loved – fashion design. She received her Fashion Design Diploma at The Art Institute of Vancouver, achieving President’s Honour Roll, the Best of Portfolio Show Award and the Most Outstanding collection Award at the Atelier 2016 Fashion Show.

Image courtesy of Ed Ng Photography
Upon graduation, her collection was featured on the New York Fashion Week runway on February 2016. She designs edgy, elegant and flattering yet comfortable, functional and one of a kind pieces. The love she has for animals is a huge part of the inspiration behind her designs.

Animals can and do feel and understand everything just as intensely as a human being does and making them suffer for any reason including creating textiles is definitely not ethical. She believes there is no beauty in what that has been achieved if it has caused another pain and misery.

Her focus is to create luxurious collections using stunning, highquality 100% cruelty-free, manmade materials including faux fur products, expanding the depth of beauty of this world, rather than taking away from it.

Tuesday Shows - 

Edzerza Gallery

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

Alano Edzerza was born in 1981 and belongs to the Raven clan of the Tahltan Nation. He has been an artist since he could hold a pencil; and received his rst recognition of merit at age thirteen for a sculpture award from the School Board of Victoria. This early encouragement pushed him towards his artistic career.

At 21, Alano began working in Northwest Coast art under the tutelage of his family member, fellow Tahltan artist, Terrance Campbell. In 2002, Alano furthered his education by attending school in Arizona for jewelry where he worked under the instruction of Rick Charlie. He has also had the opportunity to work with artists Jay Simeon, Marcel Russ, Philip Grey, Rick Adkins, Corey Bulpitt, and many others.

Alano cemented the reputation of his growing company during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games when he designed the outerwear for the Dutch Olympic team. Today now being one of the key artists in the contemporary northwest coast art movement, he is the owner and director of Edzerza Gallery, Edzerza sports and Edzerza Artworks and has been running his own business since 2007.

Recently, Edzerza Gallery has moved from the downtown Vancouver location to a fully operational online store and gallery, The Edzerza Artworks business plan and proposal has been set up since starting the gallery. Ongoing activities have included art production, sales, wholesale and as of late focusing on online retail sales.

TKC Design Inc.

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography
Taranjit (Taran) Cheema is a Canadian-born designer who has a strong eye for colors and graphics. She explores mix media and always strives to create unique and inspirational pieces. In addition to fashion, she also enjoys exploring other passions such as photography and fine arts.

Originally, she pursued her love for fine arts, which naturally progressed into an interest in fashion design. In 2009, she got accepted into Parsons The New School for Design in New York City.

Taran Cheema recently graduated from Parsons with a Bachelor in Fine Arts. In May 2013, she exhibited her thesis collection at the Parsons 560 Exhibition and the Parsons Benefit Gala. Within her graduating class in the fashion program, she was recognized as being among the students who received a high score on her thesis collection.

TKC Design Inc. is about the embodiment of color. Inspired by color and rich textures, TKC Design Inc. hopes to inspire a movement of endless possibilities. Our pieces are so unique and bold that they will catch everyone’s eyes. We offer one of kind pieces that we guarantee you will not find anywhere else. Enriched in bold colors our collection is made to empower women. We dare you to be bold and vibrant in a grey society!

ODD - One Delirious Dream

Images courtesy of Ed Ng Photography

Jennifer Bond and Cecilia Bright have been sewing together since they were children. They have similar aesthetics but different ideas about self expression. One Delirious Dream was created to combine their love for fine garments and proper fit. Clothing is made to order, and accompanied with a fitting at their studio. Their main aesthetic is drawn heavily from the occult and macabre, monochromatic palettes, nature, and historical garments. It is dark, hazy, a little decadent and very dramatic. Cecilia primarily designs and with Jennifer’s input they truly create unique pieces that are cohesive and easy to put together for a lifestyle effect. Women are not made out of a mold, and should not be on a pedestal. We want to help you leave the ideals of society, and express yourself the way you want to be seen and heard. Take up space, over dress, be sumptuous.

“We like to create bold statement looks without using too much colour, that are both haunting and beautiful. Something curious, and highly intimidating.”