FC Designer Spotlight : Studio Fresh

The Studio Fresh line is created and designed by Connie Meyer in Toronto. In this work there is a play of past and present with much attention given to detail by either texturing and/or tailoring to give a look that is both unique and body flattering. The result is often a fun individual piece that can also blend easily with an existing wardrobe, but has a character of its own. The individual stays with you.

FALL FEATURE ITEMS:

The Milli Cardigan: This cardigan is such a versatile item as it can be worn as a cardigan over other clothing, or as a long tunic top with leggings or other delicate bottoms. It easily dresses up or down and is an amaingly comfortable piece that adds to any wardrobe.

The Morgan Coat/Dress: This coat/dress is an easy-wear versatile piece that allows one to wear it as a dress zipped up completely or as a topper to narrow pants, tights, skirts or slip dress. The Velcro tab allows one to wear it unzipped but belted over for some closure.
It is a playful item that can also look serious.

Q&A with Studio Fresh designer Connie Meyer

How long have you been designing/where did you get your start?
I have been designing clothing for only about 12 years or so. I started off in the arts some 30 years ago, which at that time I would never have thought to end up in fashion not to mention retail! However, here I am all the same. I have Toronto designer, Annie Thompson to thank for my beginnings. When she still had her shop on Queen St. West I had brought my first wrap skirt to her to see what she thought of it. I got a call from her shop asking to carry the line. I worked day and night developing a line of skirts and soon after, a variety of other bottoms with Velcro closures, as I did not know how to install a zipper. That Velcro closure became a part of the trademark of my work, and I still use it on a variety of items today. I have since moved onto using the industry, and no longer sew the entire line, but I make it a point to make limited editions with hands-on attention to detail.

Where did you find your inspiration for this collection?
My inspiration for my fall/winter 2012 line came from a mixture of turn of the centruy, 1930’s and contemporary street-wear. I wanted a casual/dressy wardrobe that had strong independent pieces that could easily dress up and down without using too much black (of which I’m often guilty). I wanted the sleeveless pieces to be comfortable to wear on their own or with a delicate camisole underneath for a sexy elegant look. That same piece also worked with a turtleneck or layered over a variety of tops or shirts for a more eclectic look.
I find that pieces that layer easily allow the individual to pull them into their own wardrobe to give a variety of looks that can move from conservative to eclectic and even avant-garde. It allows for individual play but the individual piece is strong enough to function on its own.

If you could dress any celebrity who would it be?
If I could dress any celebrity, Keira Knightly comes to mind, so does Rhianna, for the obvious reason that anything would look great on them. However, I would choose Mick Jagger. I know that I design women’s wear but I could seriously see Jagger in one of my Kilt-like skirts (made for him of course), a plum satin shirt with extended collar, a faux fur pocket belt, gartered socks, Fluevog Swordfish Cooper shoes, and to top it off perhaps a fedora. Even at his age he could look pretty hot in an avant-garde sort of way.

What is the most rewarding part about having your own line?
The most rewarding part of having my own line is that it allows me to see where I am.

What has been the best part of your Fresh Collective journey thus far?
The best part of my Fresh Collective journey thus far has been the incredible support they give me. Not only do they constantly post my work on their site, they also keep me informed as to what needs to be replenished and what needs to go. They take care of things and focus on the marketing where my focus is not as strong. They definitely sell my work.

FC Designer Spotlight: Odd Bird Designs

Odd Bird jewellery is decidedly quirky yet fun to wear.It is a collection consisting of random items such as game pieces, geometric shapes, lockets, cuffs and whatever else catches the designers eye.The pieces will get noticed, therefore perfect for those who want to stand out from the flock! The Odd Bird is actually a human named Tara who is a long-standing member of the Fresh Collective and also works in the animation industry.

FALL FEATURE ITEMS:

Brass cuffs featuring Alphonse Mucha’s zodiac lady and a greyhound. I chose the Mucha art image not only for the Zodiac signs but because the lady is a red head (us red heads stick together!) The other cuff is a vintage star map image of a greyhound (or maybe a whippet?) representing the Canis Major constellation. I’ve always been fascinated by the stars ever since I was a kid and the dog star was always one of my favourites.

 

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The Star domino necklace features the classic tarot card image hand-printed & coloured on the back of a large domino piece. The card is the 17th Trump or Major Arcana in most traditional tarot decks. It represents renewed hope, inspiration and discovery.

Q&A with Tara of Odd Bird Designs

How long have you been designing/where did you get your start?I’ve always been creating things ever since I can remember but it wasn’t until about 5 years ago I got serious about it and founded Odd Bird Designs as a registered business.

Where did you find your inspiration for this collection? For this Fall one of my themes is “Follow the Stars”. It’s inspired by constellations, astrology and divination….all things that have always fascinated me. Plus my name means “star” in Sanskrit so it seems appropriate 🙂

If you could dress any celebrity who would it be That would be my favourite red head, Christina Hendricks. I love her Joan character in the Mad Men series!

What is the most rewarding part about having your own line? I love seeing people on the street wearing my jewellery…it’s tempting to say “Thanks for liking my work!” to them!
What has been the best part of your Fresh Collective journey thus far? Getting feedback & suggestions from both customers and FC designers….they all have contributed to help Odd Bird become what it is now and I am very grateful for it.
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FC Designer Spotlight: Paper People Clothing

Jennifer Fukushimaand her team spend hours sifting through vintage castoffs to find the best materials to create their eclectic palette of printed, tonal and textural fashions.Layer up and stay warm without compromising your individuality and personal style.  Paper People is sleek, stylish and feminine – you’ll never look frumpy when you put on one of our sweaters!Made from the highest quality reclaimed sweaters and eco-conscious textiles, with a little tender loving care your favourite sweater will stay looking fresh for seasons to come!  This winter we have expanded our accessories offerings to keep you feeling warm, cozy and stylish.

FALL FEATURE ITEMS:

The Maude Blazer is a repeat from last Fall/Winter. We made them late in the season (right before Xmas) so they had a very late launch but we found they did amazingly well at the One of a Kind Show so we decided to bring them back this year! The sleeves are cut long with lined cuffs so they can be rolled up – no need to hem or alter. They are professional enough to wear to the office but are also so cozy you’ll want to wear them around the house or out for a walk in the brisk autumn weather.  They look great with a tee and jeans, over a dress or paired with a pencil skirt and blouse.

The Alexandra Dress is our other “it” piece. Over the past few years we’ve become known for our body hugging sweater dresses. They’re equal parts cozy and sexy. We think that staying warm shouldn’t equal looking frumpy. This dress has princess seams that cut up the body in a flattering way and the v-neckline is trimmed with a matching velvet ribbon.  Much like the blazer, this one can be dressed up or down. Pair it with tights and boots for a cozy and casual look or throw on a fancy necklace and heels and you’re ready for a night out.

Q&A with Paper People Designer Jennifer Fukushima:

How long have you been designing/where did you get your start?
I have been designing under my current label for 11 years. I started my business making handbags and accessories when I was 17. After graduating high school, I moved to Toronto to attend Ryerson University’s fashion design program and began designing and selling clothing.
Where did you find your inspiration for this collection?

My designs are often inspired by vintage pieces, things from the past and the very materials that we reclaim.  The bottom line is that we aim to design pieces that are wearable, yet creative and inspired.

If you could dress any celebrity who would it be?

Devendra Banhart.

What is the most rewarding part about having your own line?

I love the freedom of being able to make my own choices and take my own direction with my career, plus giving other people the opportunity to share in the experience.  That and I always get a kick out of how shocked people are when they find out that I run my own clothing line and that it is carried in stores across Canada and no I don’t work from home.  I look and act younger than I am so most people assume I’m a student or a dirty hippie.

What has been the best part of your Fresh Collective journey thus far?

I love Fresh Collective because it has given me the opportunity to meet, network with, befriend, mentor and be mentored by so many like minded, creative individuals.