It really was quite amazing that there is this little secret fashion world in Ottawa. The city is known for being government central, populated by government workers and diplomats - words like conservative and dare I say, boring are often used to describe the Capital which is a little unfair. Anyway so the Press Party at foundation was great. It gave me a chance to meet some bloggers that I simply didn't know existed. Shout out to Julie at Pop Champagne, Marilou of Twenty York Street, who I met briefly but mostly we waved and tweeted each other over from opposite sides of the catwalk!! Justyna of ChiChiChic and her friend Julie, who made the first day very entertaining! Alex of Ottawa Style, who was sitting next to me both nights I was there, we both coveted a very sparkly Karen McClintock bracelet and had to have reviving chocolate covered cherries when it all got too much! Thanks to you all for making the weekend very enjoyable and a lot more fun that if I had been by myself!
The venue for the shows was the National Gallery and a more magnificent venue could not have been chosen. With the impressive high ceilings and floor to ceiling windows, as well as the sparkling lights of the City in the distance it made for a very fitting and grand location. When I arrived on the Friday, the Great Hall was already buzzing with people. There was a cash bar and standing tables with nibbles on for those who wanted. I found the girls I'd met the night before and we took our seats on the front row. And thus, Fashion Week started.
I went on the Friday and the Sunday, I had all intention of going on the Saturday but with starting to move house that weekend it just wasn't happening, which was a shame as I missed a couple of shows I was looking forward to. Never mind, such is life!
While, as would be expected, not all the shows were to my taste ( unfinished hems, anyone?) there were a few standouts. On the Friday, one of my favourite shows and perhaps telling of a more professional company was the menswear by Trive by ModaSuite. A show full of amazing Men's tailoring with gorgeous linen suits and skinny tailored pants. Made us all wish that more men dressed like that. Very chic and sophisticated.
I also really enjoyed the Karen McClintock show, a jewelry designer whose work can be found in Holt Renfrew, and as we all know I'm a fan of anything sparkly. There were a few particularly lust worthy pieces!
As for the Sunday there were a couple of shows that everyone seems to agree were fabulous. The first was Adrian Wu, my personal favourite show of the weekend. While most of the designers focused on wearable fashion, Wu's show was an exciting explosion of fantasy and the avant garde. It was a wonderful shock to the system from the previous shows. Here are some picture but I warn you, and as I have mentioned numerous times before, my photography is mediocre at best. Add to that, that these were all taken on my iPhone and you have some seriously shocking photography. I didn't realise it was possible to take quite so many bad photos at one time. You've been warned.
The second great show was Jessica Biffi. If you watched Project Runway Canada I'm sure you would remember her. Her show was great, a kind of nautical theme and this year she included some really gorgeous menswear. I had a chance to meet her and she was so nice. She said she had been looking at my hair all night! (It was absolutely massive and curly). She was also wearing the most amazing pair of clear and gold Grandmaster glasses, modeled on the trademark Run DMC glasses, I need a pair!
Another shout out to Stacey from Kania Couture who I met and who was absolutely lovely. Each model wore a short white wig, which was such a simple but fantastic idea - the audience was then totally focused on the clothes. Her show of gorgeous luxe wearable pieces was great and her entrance on the runway was the most fun all weekend! She danced along the runway and had the entire audience cheering her on!
(Miss Stacey dancing at the end of the runway with a standing ovation from Marilou of 20ys!)
A big thank you to all of the organizers at Ottawa Fashion Week for having me, particularly Julianne and Chris, it was a great event and you should be very proud! See you next season!