World MasterCard Fashion Week: What we’re excited to see

In an office filled with women, it’s inevitable the there will be some passion for fashion amongst us. So,  we’re pretty excited to (again) be a part of this year’s World MasterCard Fashion Week. This year sees a return of some old favourite designers and some exciting new additions. We are on the edge of our seats and can’t wait to see some cutting-edge, fabulous creations make their way down the Canadian catwalk.

From haute-couture to street-style, we’re loving it all. Here’s a sampling of some of the shows that we’re
reaaaalllly looking forward to seeing this year.

Mercedes-Benz Start Up National Final
Tuesday, October 23, 7 p.m.


For the past two seasons, Mercedes-Benz has sponsored a competition between emerging Canadian designers. The competition aims to foster the young talent in this country, and provide mentorship and support to young designers. This year, eight are competing for a chance to show at the fall/winter 2013 shows this March. The eight finalists this year include Caitlin Power, Christopher Bates, Duy, Dreamboat Lucy, Lauren Bagliore, Malorie Urbanovitch, Nicole Campre and Pure Magnolia


The designers in this competition always provide an interesting show and it’s exciting to try and predict both this years’ winner and who else will wind up making a strong impression on Canadian fashion. We can’t wait to see who wins this year and view their full collection next season.

Wednesday, October 24, 9 p.m.

Joe Mimran and his wife Kimberley Newport-Mimran (Pink Tartan).
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We consider ourselves to be fairly up-to-the-minute with fashion trends but of course being on a budget (and who isn’t these days?) can sometimes crash our closet fantasies. This is why we love Joe Fresh. A staple amongst the office (it’s not a coincidence since there’s a Joe Fresh store down the street from us), we love how creative director Joseph Mimran offers trendy shoppers stylish and versatile looks for everyday that are totally cute and totally affordable. His pieces are simple. Sleek lines, bold colours and cute accessories that are easily paired to create great outfits for work or weekend. Not to mention the down-right crazy-cute shoes that are popping up everywhere you look.

Being the co-founder of Club Monaco, it’s easy to trust that the Joe brand will be on trend.  It’s earned a huge following over the last couple of years and is available at over 300 Canadian locations and has popped up on New York’s Fifth Avenue this past spring. It’s come a long way from it’s 40 store launch in 2006. Can’t wait to see what Joe has come up with for 2013.



Adorable.

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   Thursday, October 25, 8 p.m.

The man behind the label…
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Arthur Mendonça launched his collection in 2002 after receiving a fashion design degree from Ryerson University. His line has grown since then and opened Spring 2005 Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in Los Angeles. The line has since been presented in London, Los Angeles, Montréal, New York, São Paulo and Toronto. His designs have also been featured on
the covers of
Cosmopolitan,
Marie Claire, Fashion,
Flare, Elle
and Out
Magazine
, and within the covers of Wallpaper and In Style. 


He appeared as a guest
judge on the first season of 
Project Runway Canada, and his clothes are earning a reputation amongst celebs. Pieces have been spotted on Nelly Furtado, Rihanna, MariaBello and Mischa Barton, to name a few.

Mendonça’s work is recognized for its accent pieces and his attention to detail, which you can see in features like gold snaps, push buttons and zippers. 

Friday, October 26, 5 p.m.

Travis Taddeo.
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Travis Taddeo is a hip Montreal-based designer who launched his line in 2008 after graduating from the fashion design program at College LaSalle. Taddeo is known for his combination of minimal lines and distinctive blends of silk, jersey, leather and fur, a perfect combination of simplicity with a bit of edginess. How very Montreal of him…



This year has been a milestone year for Taddeo. With his 2013 collection, he’s focused on clean cuts and classic designs and has stayed true to the line’s minimalistic edge. He’s also launched his first complete collection for men, Travis Taddeo Homme and has collaborated with Aldo to create a line named “Aldo Rise“. He’s taken his signature blend of street and luxury and has created a complete collection, dressing us from head to toe. We love the blend of different styles and can’t wait to see what he has created this year.

Friday, October 26, 3 p.m.

Lead designer, Bruce Dang.
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The fairytale lovers and the romantics amongst us are dying to see the Paraezo Couture show. Established in Toronto in 2009, Paraezo Couture is the high-fashion division of Paraezo Bridal. The spring/summer 2013 collection, Essence, was created and is led by designer Bruce Dang. Having launched its first collection in 2012, Paraezo is still a new face on the bridal gown scene and offers beautiful, modern designs. The collection’s name reveals its inspiration: the Spanish word paraiso, which means paradise, mountains and garden of eve. Sounds like it will be a lovely show. Even if we’re not in the market for a bridal gown, it’s always nice to day dream, isn’t it?


One of Dang’s beautiful gowns.
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We’re sure there are lots of other shows that will take our breath away; these are just a handful of our favourites. See you in the tents!
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Fashion-able: 2012 Designer Collaborations

There’s something so exhilarating about a great collaboration. Some of our favourite songs of all time have resulted from it (hello, One Sweet Day? ‘Nuff said.). We’re thrilled that fashion designers have started creating limited collections with guests – be they a blogger, editor, artist or model, we’re making our wish lists for items from these designer collabs.


The Man Repeller x Dannijo (MR Dannijo)

We’ve had a girl crush on The Man Repeller (aka Leandra Medine)
since the launch of her cheeky blog back in 2010. Everything she does is
perfection (lady boners all around!), so when she pairs up with a designer we
pay attention. Her collaboration with the jewelry line du jour Dannijo has the
perfect punch of colour for fall. 


This collaboration takes us back to the days of Claire Danes circa My So-Called Life—think daisy prints and the original grungy plaid of the
90s. British model, Aggy says she bought her first pair of Docs at 13 “as a combination of
showing that I wanted to rebel against my parents and they were the coolest
boots that I could get away with wearing to school”. We can’t wait to get our hands on this collection, which hits stores August 15.


That’s right folks, Flare Magazine’s fashion director Liz Cabral and Canadian shoe brand Aldo are teaming up again for another collaboration. There aren’t too many details out yet, but Liz tweeted “we’re doing more than just
a shoe”. This pairing makes us proud to be Canadian and if it’s anything like their first collab, you’ll probably want to start planning your strategy for being first in line. The collection will be revealed in September and available in stores and online in October.



What we love most about H&M collaborations is how they
bring high fashion to the masses. Labels like Lanvin, Versace and
Comme des Garçons are made affordable so us, the common folk, can wear high fashion items. The latest collab is with cult favourite Maison Martin Margiela. It launches November 15 in approximately 230 stores
worldwide, as well as online.



The latest artist to collaborate with legendary fashion house Louis Vuitton is 82-year-old avant-garde artist Yayoi Kusama. The collection is fun
and quirky, just like her art. Polka-dot-obsessed Kusama’s collection is complemented by the breathtaking exhibits at the Whitney Museum in New York City and the Tate Modern in London. Available now in select Louis Vuitton stores worldwide.
“…a polka-dot has the form of the sun, which is a
symbol of the energy of the whole world and our living life, and also the form
of the moon, which is calm. Round, soft, colorful, senseless and unknowing.
Polka-dots become movement… Polka dots are a way to infinity.”
– Yayoi Kusama





 
 


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Media, Darling: Liz Cabral

Liz Cabral started
her career as Fashion Editor with
Chatelaine magazine, and in 2004 she joined
FLARE as Style Editor. In 2005, she was promoted to Fashion Director. During her
tenure, she has given
FLARE’s fashion coverage a fresh, distinct point of view
that successfully combines inspirational fashion editorial with down-to-earth,
how-to information.  


An esteemed stylist and creative visionary, Cabral has
won multiple industry awards and worked with some of the world’s top
personalities, including Daria Werbowy, Coco Rocha, Fergie, Taylor Swift,
Dakota Fanning and Zooey Deschanel. A sought-after fashion expert, she
frequently appears on such shows as Breakfast Television, CityLine, MTV, Fashion Television, ET
Canada
and eTalk. A designer in her own right, Cabral has been
involved in two very successful collaborations: the first-ever FLARE/Aldo shoe
launched in 2011, which sold out in weeks; and, in partnership with The
Shopping Channel, was the creative force behind the FLARE designer-inspired lamb leather convertible shoulder bag.



Did you always want
to be in the media? If not, what other careers were on the horizon?
I always knew I wanted to be in the fashion industry,
but I didn’t realize magazines were my calling until I actually interned at
one – Flare, actually – back in university.

Where would you like to be five years from now? 
Either living in the eye of a chaotic fashion hub like
Paris or New York, or the complete opposite and living in a California coastal
town growing organic vegetables.

Any advice for people getting started in your industry? 
There’s been a lot of controversy and hullabaloo around
interning these days, but it is one of the most invaluable experiences you’ll
have if you take proper advantage of it. It allows you to meet people you’d
never otherwise be exposed to and gain experience. I’ve hired countless interns
on as editors and never once been disappointed. I believe the right internship can
really lead to your dream job 
 it did mine.

What are your favourite media outlets, not including your own? (i.e.:
what do you read/listen/watch?)
My Internet surfing is very fashion-oriented so WWD, Style.com,
The Cut (although I could do with a little less snark; that’s certainly the
downfall of a lot of websites these days). I read all types of magazines from
every edition of Vogue to Women’s Health to Esquire and Wired.

Best advice you’ve ever been given? 
Never make a decision based off of fear and follow
your gut.

What rule(s) do you live your life by?
Never wait until tomorrow to fulfill a dream or
passion.

What’s the most important tip you can give PR pros?
Read magazine mastheads and don’t call a senior editor
asking who covers what beat; you should be reading the publications you’re pitching and know all the players. I can’t tell you how many times I get an
email addressed to someone who worked at Flare 10 years ago.

Best experience you’ve had with a PR pro? We love to hear about #wins.
The pros know how to relate and talk to editors
without sounding like a press release 😉

I hate?
I hate to hate. Nothing goods comes of it.

I love?
Travelling. Nothing brings you life experience and
education like travelling the world and experiencing different cultures. You’re
a more interesting
person for it.

Reading? 
Eckhardt
Tolle’s The Power of Now – a little self discovery is always good.

Best place on earth?
Hard to pick just one. But in the last year I’ve been
to Morocco, New Zealand and Japan; I’d say those are all up there on the best-of list. Along with Italy and Bali and the California coast and……..

Dinner guest?
Nothing beats dinner with my best friend/husband.

Favourite app (or whatever you are downloading these days)?
Whatever app my husband downloads on to my phone, he’s
a computer engineer. ‘Nuff said.

Pool or ocean?
Ocean. Salt water is great for your hair and heart.

Voicemail or email?
Email. Easier to hit reply than pick up the phone.

Fashion-able: Fresh spring kicks

With last week’s blast of warm weather, we gleefully ran to our closets and started to pull out our spring staples: shorts, skirts, dresses…Since technically it is spring, it got us thinking about what shoes we’ll need this season. Here, we’ve rounded up some of our classic favourites and new kicks we’re coveting for this season.

And hey, you can never really have enough shoes, right? 

If you’re looking for some investment pieces, these Gucci Tri-color suede platform sandals with a splash of mint (we adore mint) are great for spring, and can be transitioned into colder weather with some opaque black tights. 



An alternative to leopard, these Haircalf Giraffe Slipper by Charles Philip offer “cushioned leather insole, an indented toe flap and rubber soles. They arrive packaged in a beautiful box, encased in a shoe bag and scented with tiny sachets – how precious!” Precious, indeed

Love Jeffrey Campbell but want a break from the ubiquitous Lita? This spring try out something new – there are a myriad of interesting styles including this gem, the Rockette Wedge.

Hooked on flats? This Aztec flat available at Dealuxe from Twelfth St. by Cynthia Vincent is an office-appropriate boost of colour that makes us happy to just look at it. 

We’re pretty sure you can wear these Alexander Wang Chloe perch-trimmed leather sandals (bit of a mouthful) just about anywhere. The neutral colours with a pop of “perch” (a pretty peachy-coral) would look great with some black skinny jeans and a white tee. 



We can’t write this post without mentioning a favourite on the fourth floor – a nice crisp pair of white Converse Chuck Taylor All Star’s. We’re personally fans of the low cut, but the high tops are fun too. Classic, comfortable, stylish and great for riding a bike or wearing with jeans or shorts. 

ALDO’s Calcagni wedges – if we can wear these many hours a day without (too much) pain – you know they’re a good thing. This season they come in a variety of colours from neutrals to neons and can add a little cheap and cheerful punch to any ensemble. Highlighter yellow? Why not?




ShoeMint always offers amazing styles with their collections, and when fashion icon Rachel Bilson and visionary celeb stylist Nicole Chavez are designing, we can’t help but shop. 
We’re so excited about the warm weather and the shoe options to come. Now only to decide on pedi colours…

Fashion-able: Flat-soled solutions

For this Fashion-able post, we enlisted our stylist-turned-publicist Lara to give us the lowdown on flats for the summer. Her keen eye and strong, individual fashion sense means she’s got some serious opinions about shoe style. Let us know if you agree or not – tweet us @rockitpromo. 
I’m going to admit something that may offend: I don’t like ballet flats as footwear. Yep, I said it. And I mean it. Now I’ll also admit this: I’m being hypocritical because I own about 9 pairs of Bloch’s. I think they’re pretty to look at and don’t get me wrong, they look great for a cute, prepster look with skinny cropped jeans. But with skirts/flared jeans/leggings – I just cringed while typing.


I have a theory: I don’t think that people are all rocking this style based solely on their love of slippers. I think people gravitate to ballet flats because they’re easy, comfortable and most importantly, because there’s a lack of other flat-soled summer options out there.

Case in point: gladiator sandals. Probably the most unflattering footwear to exist to date. It’s quite simple really. Thick straps on ankles lead to cankles. End of story. No leg will be flattered when they become cut-off and thus, stumpy. Non-option number one.

Birkenstocks: I’m crunchy granola at heart (seriously), but really, they’re meant for the cottage. Period. Non-option number 2.

Thongs: Many people swear by them, but to me, they just hurt right between my big and second toes. I’m actually fascinated that people can wear these. Regardless, they’re non-option number three, unless you’re on the beach.
So what’s a girl to do? Well, don’t be discouraged to start with. I’ve found a few pairs of flatties, both high end, low end, casual and dressy, that will get you through the summer without having to take the easy route out with ballet flats, convenient as they may be.
 
Casual comfort go-to’s:

Bensimon Classic Lace Up Flats, $57.51, Shopbop.com
SILVANA, originally $20, on sale for $12.98, Aldo
A flat espadrille and an light sneaker (FYI, Bensimon’s are Europe’s equivalent of North America’s Converse). Both great choices for a summer dress or skinny pant.
 
Dressier dilemmas? Solutions:
Dolce Vita Jayne Flat Sandals, $151, Shopbop.com. 
A thin strap around the ankle removes the stump factor and inserts the sexy factor, especially with the splash of gold on these.
Joie Cabaret Lace Up Flat Sandals $227, Shopbop.com.
AKSUMA $60, Aldo.
Same goes for airy chiffon. This amps up the romance and eliminates the dreaded cankle.

Jenni Kayne 3 Band Flat Sandals $353, Shopbop.com.
These don’t have the thong, which makes them dressier. The thick leather bands make them appropriate for work or nights out, and are the essence of a summer day-to-night shoe. 
Let’s all take a minute and relish the joy that comes in the form of a sockless summer. And while Rachel Bilson, one of my style icons, will always look impeccable in ballet flats, let’s aim to expand our horizons. We can do it, one slipper-less step at a time.