Monthly Archives: March 2011
You know when you see something that you would think would look old but looks fresh and young? Yeah, that.
I have a fondness for laser-cut items.
Bubblegum pink, and crinkled. Adorable.
In which I go to a fashion show. I know.
Stephan Wong and Kirk Pickersgill unleashed the Autumn/Winter 2011 collections for their two lines, Greta Constantine and Ezra Constantine, at Toronto’s Bayview Audi on Friday, March 25. My ass? Was in the crowd. And it was first surprised, then delighted, and then more than a little appreciative of the direction Wong and Pickersgill have decided to take the Greta Constantine woman for the upcoming season.
Building on the romance of their Spring/Summer 2011 collection, the boys have taken Greta Constantine on a tour of northern Europe in the winter. While known for their amazing draped jersey dresses – which emerged in the third act of the show – Wong and Pickersgill reached beyond the expected and added silhouettes that reflect fit and volume, and layers of previously unexpected fabrics like velvets and wools. Waists were cinched with peplum belts, skirts were voluminous and billowing, and wrapping and pinning a blanket around yourself never seemed so chic. Or had such unbelievable motion. And that was before the dreamy jersey dresses made their appearance.
Following the first set of woman-in-the-winter looks came the men of Ezra Constantine. Whereas Greta surprised, Ezra continued on in the direction set in previous collections. While a few of the layering elements explored in the GC pieces that had just made their way down the runway, the mens looks were easy didn’t put up a fight for attention. And then it was back to the ladies.
Perhaps in as an answer to the question I posed the duo on Twitter, “Why do a majority of designers default to dark & somber instead of deep & rich colours for their winter lines?”, Greta Constantine used a shades of greys and blacks as a foundation for making jewel-toned blues, purples and reds pop like crazy. LIKE CRAZY.
Jersey dresses in saturated blues, reds and purples made a stunning appearance. Topped with amazing coats, or cozy scarves, they were a winter evening delight. And delivered on the drapey-expectations that the Greta Constantine story is based on. The closer was just that – a stunning purple gown with a bodice cut down to there, topped with a fur-collared coat that made me, as anti-fur as I am, gasp with delight.
The final walk was done to the tune of Rob Base and DJ EZ Rock’s “It Takes Two”, which made me grin like a goon. And seeing Wong and Pickersgill delighted walk past the massive crowd? Seriously lovely to see.
More pics – including a few more of my favourite looks via Fashion Magazine, a shot of the amazeballs Aldo shoe collaboration from Peroni’s LGFW microsite, and pics I took myself – and a bullet point summary of the experience below, but I know you want to see the full collection, and I know you want to see it, like, NOW, so here you go. Just come back and read the rest later, okay?
So, what’s it like to go to a fashion show? Reminiscent of the industry parties of my past – though, this time, I wasn’t in the industry in question. I remember how insular pre- and post- rockshow events were, and that was very much par for the course here. Everyone knows everyone, except you, and, you know, that’s not at all unexpected. I felt perfectly comfortable floating on the edges of the crowd, and delighted in seeing all of the big names in Canadian and Toronto-based fashion circles (Lisa Tant from Flare, Suzanne Boyd from Zoomer, Leesa Butler from the F-List, Jeanne Beker, Glen Baxter, Anita from I Want I Got, the Beckermans, and more) hanging out in the throng.
- Bayview Audi is an excellent space for an event. The above ground showroom, with its wall of windows, and the basement area that was turned into a runway space, give off a modern drama that was perfect for the night. I get way Greta Constantine continue to show their collections there time and again.
- God, it’s nice to see men who know how to dress themselves. Suited-up or not, men who have an understanding of clothing that works on their bodies? Brilliant. Working at a tech company in a tech city pretty much guarantees seeing such a thing doesn’t happen often in my everyday life.
- IPhone camera photos really don’t serve you well in a dark, fast-moving situations. I took a mess of pictures, and have thrown those into a slideshow below. But this pic to the side? Really encapsulates the rush and excitement of the show for me. And damn, those colours!
- The shoes on the models? Kicked ass. The result of a collaboration between the designers and Aldo, I can only wish that they will see the light, and produce these suckers for sale to the general public. Brocade-y and spectacular. Check it:
- The show started and wound up with a blast of fake snow; if only there hadn’t been real snow on the ground outside.
- Post-show, I decided to head back home instead of sticking around. While I had backstage accreditation, and could go and meet the guys, I really felt that this night was way more about the industry celebrating their own, and not about me meeting designers whose work I adore. Next time they have a sample sale, though? I am so there.
- Best thing I heard all night, when leaving the building, swag bag sponsored by Stoli and Schwarzkopf in-hand, and seeing a member of the show team approach another audience member as they started to leave as well, “If they don’t come near you, you don’t have to give them anything!” Excellent.
- Oh, and what did I end up wearing? When getting dressed for the night, my initial thought was to go colourful and body-con,and I pulled pieces from Helmut Lang, DVF and Alice+Olivia from my closet. Then I paused. And decided Iwanted to wear not only Canadian, but as many Toronto-based designers as well. Out came a royal purple Ashley Rowe a-line dress from a few seasons back, a black Jessica Jensen portfolio clutch, a Brave Beltworks corset belt and Aldo boots. Bathroom mirror pic!
MY FAVOURITE PIECES FROM THE SHOW
The Pictures I Took
And this is how I felt all night:
I may have just found the summer dress of 2011. Teal! Colour-blocking! Knife pleats! Perfection.
Available: Tie Waist Cami Dress by Akiko via Revolve
Absolutely silly. Adore.
If you don’t have love for (a) the Mui Mui kitty print that showed up in their SS2010 collection or (b) the shape of the classic Mui Mui platform ankle strap pump, I have nothing to say to you.
Those, in print form!
Available: Shoe Print by Kris Atomic
Before we get down to Dobric’s frocks, just a reminder: if you’d like to help me get front row tickets to the Greta Constantine FW2011 show on Friday, please head over to Facebook and add Greta Constantine as a friend. When you’re confirmed, please head on back and like the link I posted to this post on their wall – not this blog, their wall. Thanks!
Now, on to more Canadian designer loveliness!
Dobric’s been doing the digital print fabrics for ages, but they always seem fresh. These two from his SS2011 line are perfection.
Glass Corset Dress, trompe l’oeil!
Moss Dress, super easy for every day:
Update: I didn’t win, but I did – the House of Constantine extended an invite to the show, and goddamn, I went! Read all about the loveliness!
And when I say I want, I mean I want to go. Bad. Like the way when you were three years old and you just vibrated with the WANT of, well, anything that you wanted to do or make yours. On Friday, Mar 25, I want to be seated at the Greta Constantine Fall / Winter 2011 runway show. For reals. Dammit, I even know what I’m going to wear (all Canadian designers, of course!) if I get the chance to go. And wouldn’t you know, I maybe, kind of do? The house o’ Greta Constantine selected me to be one of the 5 finalists in a contest, sponsored by the Sony Bloggie, to win front row seats at their show. My reaction: HOT DAMN.
I’ve posted a bit about Greta Constantine before, here, here and here. And I know I’ll be posting about them again. Why? Because there’s something so lovely and freeing and just right about the clothing they create. Capturing movement in draping so that you can see it when a woman stands still. Pairing pieces of shape and structure alongside fluid lines in a way that just seems right. Creating drama in a way that way that causes one to pause and nod in agreement.
There’s one thing that I’ve never really told you about my love for Greta Constantine before, though, and it’s because it’s a little embarrassing. Each and every day, I wake up as a self assured, confident woman. That is, until I’m in the same room with people who have a talent that I truly admire and have never, ever met before. I just may have been at the Bloor Street Holt Renfrew store during Greta Constantine’s last trunk show, and couldn’t bring myself to go over and say hi to Kirk and Stephen. Because I am a doof that turns into that same 3 year old above, but with shyness, around people who have a talent I admire.
I promise, though, if I do make it into the crowd at their Fall/Winter 2011 show next Friday, the shyness-in-the-face-of-talent girl will get a stern talking to from the super-excellent lady I currently am, and will get the hell over it. For reals, yo.
So, how do I get there? This blog post will be linked to on Greta Constantine’s Facebook profile. The entry with the biggest number of Likes by Mar 22 will get the tickets, and the Sony Bloggie! So, get on over there, add Greta Constantine as a friend, like my post on their profile, and make me flap my arms like a goon when you help me win.
Until then, let’s take a look at some of my favourite pieces from their last few collections. Because you deserve to look at some pretty.
Spring/Summer 2011 (photo via Fashion Magazine):
Fall/Winter 2009 (photo via Greta Constantine):
Visit Greta Constantine on the web: