Posts Tagged With: canadian designer

Ottawa Fashion Week

The week now ending has been an important one in the world of Canadian fashion.  Designers release their newest collections for the season six months ahead at Fashion Week, and Ottawa is the first Canadian city to hold its fashion week, giving us a taste of what is to come from our local talent.

This season, I walked for Canadian designer KLATT on the Thursday night of fashion week.  It is difficult to describe the positive energy of preparing for these shows and being a part of this event.

Klatt runway show

Klatt

Klatt’s styles are knitwear:  comfortable, imaginative and yet very wearable.  I enjoyed working with this talented new designer.

black dress

Klatt runway show 2

See if you can spot me prepping backstage:  Video

Wine and refreshments were served to guests who came dressed to kill or not dressed up at all and a gala dinner was available for those inclined to further celebration.  My time available for this event was brief but I was inspired by the designers, hairstylists, makeup artists and all the creative talent that went into it.  “Fashion Week” sounds intimidating to lots of people I think, but what a great night out.  I really recommend getting out to one of these if you haven’t been!

Challenges of this job:  how to get your hair back to normal:0ec68414-618a-40b4-8213-d4c1f942dbba 98215a59-25df-4b13-8490-9b3c97e858c7

Klatt show finale

Can you spot me in the finale “lineup”?

Have you been to fashion week in your city?  Would you wear this hair?

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Categories: Events, Fashion | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

New Year

Happy New Year to all my followers!  I have been posting infrequently for a few months, but I’m still here, doing all the other things I usually write about:  trying new sushi joints, taking in the sensory overload that is Toronto’s shopping experience (who went out for the Boxing Day sales, guys?) and doing modeling work that comes my way.

I have intended to post more of my modeling events and shots over the past months, but like everything else, I have the pictures and haven’t done the posts.  However, I did this one for D’Avi Luxury Knitwear just before Christmas and thought I would put up a couple of the photos.  I enjoyed working with this designer who is a true artisan, and gave me a whole new appreciation for what is possible with knits!

Remember, photos are the property of the photographer, Norm Photography, and may not be copied or re-used for any purpose without his express consent.

Capture

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modeling knitwear

Photographer: Norm Photography

Tell me about your Boxing Day finds!  What was the best deal you picked up?

You can follow me on my instagram at @something_cliche

Categories: Fashion | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Bojana Sentaler: The Designer’s Road to Success

Bojana Sentaler

To be a designer – a dream for many including Bojana Sentaler, who decided to make that dream come true no matter what it took.

Bojana was uncertain as to what she what profession she wanted to go into when she chose Schulich School of Business, but says fashion had always been part of the unofficial plan.

“I always wanted to be in the fashion industry. Getting a business education at Schulich helped me get there.”

She takes a different attitude towards a career in design than some would expect, explaining that it takes more than just art and design skills to make a successful line. “Fashion seems to be glamorous and only about design, but there is a whole business behind it. I always wanted to have my own fashion line, it was a matter of finding the right opportunity to start”, she reflects.

Shortly after she graduated with a business degree, an opportunity arose for Bojana to travel the world, which inspired the birth of her own line of coats.

“I was greatly inspired by fashion, art and architecture that I saw in different countries. I had a vision of creating something unique and different that did not exist in Canada. The focus was on quality, elegance and timelessness.”

She learned about the fashions and cultures of places like Europe, Asia and South America. In South America she fell in love with the texture of alpaca fur, and began to see herself designing a high-quality line of outerwear from the rare fur, and when the time came to move back to Canada, this idea was what motivated her.

It was not easy for Bojana to get to where she is now but by planning each move she made carefully, she has overcome and avoided many difficulties.

“Like in every business, you face ups and downs. This is normal. However, I have always been very confident that Sentaler will make it and I have never given up.”

Extensive background learning in everything business and marketing, along with having a fashion and design-oriented mind has helped Bojana become successful in her field. “It is the combination of my business acumen, my sales and marketing experience on a national and international level, my pattern drafting education, my personality and love for fashion and keen sense of aesthetics that helped me to create Sentaler.”

As an entrepreneur, it is important for a designer to get into many diverse marketing events. Many young would-be entrepreneurs find it difficult to get themselves involved and begin contacting organizations to market themselves, but those who will make it most importantly have to like working with people, as Bojana does.

“I love being involved in different events and organizations,” she says. “This is what I’m good at.”

Because of this and because her line is so phenomenally well-designed, Bojana has not found it too difficult to have her line carried in stores of her choice, though for now it is sold mostly in the Sentaler Studio and online.

4 Sentaler Alpaca White Fitted Coat with Large Collar 2_0

“The Sentaler flagship store is Sentaler Studio in downtown Toronto, where the entire collection is available for purchase. Sentaler is also carried in selected boutiques.” Understandably, the designer places great value in keeping in contact with her clients, which is something she will not be able to do as her business expands and is carried in more stores. “However,” she says, “with Sentaler growing, it will be necessary to give Sentaler to more retailers.” When her line does get to the point where it is sold more in retail stores than by the designer herself, she will have to give up that personal connection with the clients. After all, she says, “the next step will be to expand in other stores across Canada and US.”

Thanks to online sales, the line of coats can be purchased from anywhere in the world, which means that Sentaler is an international brand. “However, for now, the biggest market is still in Canada,” she says, never getting excessively carried away by her own successes. “I am excited to see what the future will bring.”

Bojana is, as any good salesperson would be, concerning herself with details such as her target market, “women who have a love for elegance and an appreciation for high quality.” Right now she’s finding that that market is reached best through word of mouth, as one client will tell her friends about the amazing alpaca coat she just bought.

She keeps track of how her growth goals compared to her actual sales, which helps keep her business on course for success and lets her know what she can do to improve her sales for next year.

“Like with every business, it is very important to set sales targets and measure them regularly,” she explains. “This allows you to see whether you are on track and if not, what action plan you need to put into place in order to catch up.”

Overall, Sentaler is doing very well but as Bojana shows us, a salesperson’s work is never done, especially if that salesperson is also the designer. Bojana’s line is currently only for fall, winter and spring, but she’s working on giving clients something to covet in the summer. “I am currently researching lighter fabrics that are of equal high-end quality [to the alpaca winter line] for a summer line.”

Many reviews and websites call Bojana Sentaler “one of the top up-coming Canadian designers, which must feel good after all the work Bojana has put into her work. “I have worked very hard since the beginning so it is great to get recognition.”

Overall, Bojana has every right to be pleased with how far she has come, but she doesn’t let it get to her head. She wouldn’t go back and change anything she did, even if she could. Wouldn’t everyone like to be able to say that? Well, here’s how she got to that point: “Every decision I made and every step I took had a strategy behind it.” And that is how you can live with no regrets.

The hard-working designer has a few words of advice from her personal experience for would-be fashion designers.

She has learned that being different is not all there is, and that the best is not always the far from the norm. The trick is designing clothes that anyone would love to wear, at a better quality than anyone else.

“Don’t get so caught up in trying to be different. You have to understand that at the end of the day, people want to wear good quality clothes that complement their figure and make them feel beautiful, so stick to the basics.”

“Also, don’t start a fashion line without having a well-round business understanding or a business-minded partner.”

And in closing, “follow your dream and don’t be afraid to just go for it!

Keep up with Sentaler via twitter @Sentaler and on Instagram @Sentaler and like the brand on Facebook! Also, check out her WordPress blog here.

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Click here and here for past posts about Sentaler

Categories: Fashion | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Top Ten: Spring 2013’s Best Fashion Trends

Off the top, the purpose of this article must be clear. You can go anywhere and find out what the big trends are according to who has thought them up, who is marketing and promoting them, or according to major magazines that carry the ads. This is not one of those lists.

This is a curated, personal, wearable and hopefully real-life version of matters for those who actually have a life they need to dress for. So no, Céline’s brightly dyed Dr. Seuss-ish fur sandals will not be mentioned here. Having said that, don’t come here hoping for tips on how to wear your old sweats. The magazines have been read, the stored inspected and the collections studied. I have consulted with philanthropists (who think I should forget about it), real girls and fashion lovers. I have nixed the ridiculous, even if Louis Vuitton says it’s the latest and greatest, and I have considered the far-out to see whether it really is realistic. I have even embraced things I don’t personally like but which I do believe have legs in the world of great trends.

So, without further ado, my list of what will make any wardrobe so much better this spring, and what will stay a while (not just a season) and what will work with an existing wardrobe.

3. Black and white graphic, photo from French Vogue

3. Black and white graphic, photo from French Vogue

1. Emerald green. If there is just one thing you can do to let the world know you’re up-to-date with your spring style, it’s to wear some serious green. Even an accessory can get the point across if you don’t feel like going for something as bold as a bright green top. Seldom has a color been hailed with the fanfare of this trend which, in truth, really began last spring. In China, it is the Year of the Snake. In fashion, it is the Year of Emerald Green.

2. Snake Motifs. Thank China. You can also thank China for a lot of overpopulation and small, lead-filled toys that should be banned, but today let’s thank them for one of the best trends of spring 2013. This trend really started in fall 2012, but it’s only been growing in popularity since then. Find this trend at stores with lots of accessories: a great way wear this is on bracelets.

3. Black and white graphics. Bold and striking. Probably the best trend to put your money into just because it always looks good in some form. Black and white graphics means that you put bold black or white stripes and other strong shapes against the other color.

Capture

4. Rachel Sin’s fall 2013 collection. Photo by Philippe-Olivier Contant

4. Polka-dots. A part of me started to cry when I saw the new fall collection of Canadian designer Rachel Sin. It’s not too soon to get polka-dots for yourself though, and you will be able to wear them into fall if you pick your colors right. For instance, goldy-yellow and black are in for spring and will be in again for fall (left).

5. Water motifs. Not sure yet if this is a result of global warming and reflects the threats to the environment like so many other recent trends. Designers have been showing these swirling watery designs in blue and aqua, often on a white background. Wear this trend as an environmental statement if you like, it’s your choice.

6. Low heels. Don’t expect everybody to wear this trend on the runways, but many tall girls will be happy to hear about this, and so will people who walk a lot. Don’t throw your high heels away though, because nothing will make your legs look as good as the perfect pair of high heels, but low heels can be a welcome sight after years of serious impracticality in shoe trends.

7. Hothouse flowers. Think of oversaturated photos of crazed garden tea-parties (below). Overscale flowers on everything from shorts to dresses, pants to blazers. Wear it head to toe for highest impact or just one piece to let the world know you have style.

hot-house-flowers-1_120504796008

8. Poppy motifs on clothing by Prada, photo from Vogue

8. Black and red and poppy all over. Prada, thank you. I can’t wait to see what you do with The Great Gatsby. Like me, many people probably have a lot of black and red to start with, but you might have to get poppies. Pins, bags, t-shirts and jewelry are all great ways to slip a few poppies into your life without looking back and feeling like Dorothy on her way to Oz, and wondering why you have such an overabundance of poppies in your life. Make sure the poppies you pick (pun intended) are “mod” in style or shape (see above photo), because realistic-looking poppies aren’t quite the look.

Dress from The Free People

Dress from The Free People

9. Denim. Lots of it. Denim comes back on a regular basis, but not this much. You can wear denim head to toe: baggy or loose, flowing or tight. Skinny jeans, jackets, shorts, dresses – every possible incarnation. This year’s denim isn’t really dark or patterned, it’s just washed blue denim, the classic style.

10. Crochet fabrics. Similar to lace but heavier, this look is feminine but can be worn a little more edgy if you add leather jacket. Crochet shorts, skirts, shirts and dresses all work well, but make sure you get a creamy off-white. My “covet” in the crochet department is a dress like in the photo to the right.Now that spring fashion is coming into stores, all I’m waiting for is the snow to melt so I won’t freeze to death. To be honest, I’m more or less ready for summer clothing now.

What about you?  Is your closet ready for Spring?  

What’s the top 2013 Spring trend that you intend to wear?

For more opinionated but instructional style posts, follow me by clicking “follow” at the right, and on Instagram @something_cliche

Categories: Fashion | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 27 Comments

Dream Coats!

I attended another great Toronto event on Saturday:  an exclusive private showing of Sentaler alpaca coats for the designer’s clientele, held at the offices of Dr. Cory Torgerson on Yorkville Avenue.  This mingle and greet event gave Sentaler clients an opportunity to shop, enjoy an abundance of appetizers and refreshments, and to avail themselves of unlimited consultations and conversations with Dr. Torgerson about his repertoire of skincare and beauty services.

Alpaca coat designs on display

The event was well-attended by the designer’s and doctor’s clients, as well as fashion bloggers such as daintygirl.caDivaGirl Fitness and Fajo Magazine, and a pleasure to participate in .

With the talented makeup artist responsible for my look

Yours truly attended in her mannequin hat, not as a blogger, but hey!  I still want to share the secret of these beautiful Canadian designer coats–lightweight, flattering, environmentally friendly and cozy for our special brand of winter weather!

With fellow model Veronika

Electric blue alpaca cape coat: True Love!

Guests left the event with a gift bag of cutting-edge skin-care and beauty products and valuable coupons to take home!

At the beautiful offices of Dr. Torgerson

If you have never had a chance to try on these dream coats, and you live in the GTA, you can see the collection in person at the Designer Fair in King City November 20 and 21.

Until then, stay warm and follow me on Instagram at @something_cliche

Categories: Events, Fashion | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

National Women’s Show, Toronto

This is a shortie of a post just to let anyone in the area know that the National Women’s Show is this weekend at the Metro Convention Centre, Toronto.  The Convention Centre is probably one of the easiest locations in all of Toronto to get to, since it’s just a skip away from Union Station at the southernmost point on the subway line–you don’t have to pay outrageous parking costs if you don’t want to.

This show is an exhibition of all things “woman”, so if you’re looking for something to do this weekend, definitely grab your friends and check it out. Their slogan is “Fashion. Food. Fun.

On my way home from the casting and rehearsal.

And wave to me!  I’ll be walking in the fashion show, put on by internationally successful Canadian fashion designer and former architect, Rachel Sin and her designer friend, Bojana Sentaler.

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