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TFI News - December 2004

A fashion industry newsletter for innovative designers and small business entrepreneurs


TFI News

Brought to you by:
Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI)
1987 – 2004
17 Years of TFI

Contact TFI at tfi@fashionincubator.com

December 2004
Volume 12, Issue 8

1. TFI New Labels® Fall 2005: Meet The Semi-Finalists
2. New TFI Board Member
3. Willow Grant Opportunity for TFI Members
4. Scene + Heard
5. Upcoming Events
6. Top Picks

1. TFI NEW LABELS® FALL 2005: Meet The Semi-Finalists
Four semi-finalists, all members of the Toronto Fashion Incubator, will move forward from round two in the TFI New Labels® 2005 national design competition: Cincyn by Cynthia Florek and Cindy Custodio, PierreJale by Peter Tsang and Kelly Jale, Nostalgy by Samantha Thomson and To: For:: by Tee Kow.

Competition judges Rita Silvan of ELLE CANADA, Susanne Hiller of the National Post, Steven Sabados and Chris Hyndman of Design Rivals, designer David Dixon, Dawn Thorpe of Hugo Boss and Wendy Medina of Toray Ultrasuede America Inc. (TUA), will decide who will make the final cut on January 27, 2005.

TFI New Labels® Designer Profiles:

CINCYN: Rummages through the closet of Sherlock Holmes and his lover.
Maybe it’s the fiery personalities of Cindy Custodio and Cynthia Florek that spice Cincyn’s designs. It could also be Cindy Custodio’s work as a menswear seamstress and her design expertise at Comrags, or Cynthia Florek’s internship with designer Crystal Siemens. These George Brown College grads create eclectic collections of handcrafted clothing and accessories with a European vintage flavour. Nelly Furtado, Ivana Santilli and Tanya Kim of eTalk Daily know that Cincyn clothes stand out in a crowd because of their original designs and use of colour. Style, Fashion, FashionTelevision and FQ have already featured them, putting this creative pair well on their way to centre stage. Cincyn is available at Mendocino, Georgie Bolesworth and Want Boutique.

Its fall 2005 collection rummages through the closet of Sherlock Holmes and his lover, not for clues, but for inspiration. A clash of vintage-inspired masculine tailored pieces and flowery, feminine draped skirts and dresses can be mixed and matched to create a bohemian battle of the sexes. Cincyn’s woman is someone who is conscious of the curves of her body and demands nothing but the best in quality and style. Priced from $105 to $1,000.

NOSTALGY: Recreates style, not trends.
Designer Samantha Thomson sees what her customers want in their closets: stylish and classic garments with a feminine and urban edge. Her degree from L.A.’s Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, along with her styling and visual presentation experience with Bloomingdales and Holt Renfrew doesn’t hurt. “Nostalgy is a collection of edgy womenswear that appeals to the re-creators of style, not followers of trends,” says Thomson. “These women have a finger on fashion’s pulse and want something special.”

Vintage-influenced funky trims and fabrications combine two looks in one label. The 1967 film Bonnie and Clyde and its strong and stylish heroine inspired Nostalgy’s fall 2005 collection. “I love the 1930’s simplicity and masculine appeal,” says Thompson. Her heroine is a young professional who daydreams of becoming a modern-day Bonnie and Clyde with her boyfriend. “She wears well-cut and punk-inspired pieces while hustling people at cards and stealing cars. When awake, she prefers her less adventuresome life, but takes inspiration from her risky ‘Bonnie’ wardrobe.” Priced from $70 to $400.

PIERREJALE: Finding the future in the past.
Design duo Peter Tsang and Kelly Jale knew their destinies in fashion were set in textiles and design early on. Tsang fell in love with fabrics and Jale knew she had a passion for all things visual when they attended Vancouver’s Helen Lefeaux School of Fashion Design. With backgrounds in weaving, tapestry, painting and sculpture, it’s no surprise that PIERREJALE’s work hint at artistic aspects of the fashion business.

PIERREJALE’s mission is to create beautiful clothing for busy, professional and sociable women who want something wearable and individual. Citing the Victorians and home décor as inspirations for the fall 2005 collection, PIERREJALE finds beauty in patinas and tarnished objects d’art and antiques and instils couture details into prêt-a-porter clothing. Says Tsang, “We believe in creating everything from start to finish to ensure proper fit and quality. Every piece is as individual as the woman who wears it.” Priced from $300 to $900.

TO: FOR:: A male Carrie Bradshaw.
With a name that plays on the theme of 24 hours, Tee Kow realizes that young male professionals want to express themselves with their clothing, while assimilating in the sometimes-stuffy corporate environment. A graduate of Ryerson Polytechnic University, Kow knows the difficulties of moving beyond ”Frat Boy” to what he describes as the “Enlightened Headbanger.” Working as a supervisor of merchandise and marketing for Olsen Fashion Canada and as a stylist for Holt Renfrew allowed him to see what his client base want and need in their wardrobes.

TO:FOR::’s fall 2005 menswear collection contrasts and combines Japanese and Scottish culture for clients to ensemble their own interpretations of what style means to them. Close cuts to the body accentuate the physicality and personality of the client. Kow’s TO:FOR:: collection provides professional and cosmopolitan males with clothing to express who they are while climbing the social and corporate ladder. Think about a guy version of Carrie Bradshaw. Priced from $200.

Slated for March 2005, the TFI New Labels® national design competition offers innovative ready-to-wear fashion designers the chance to shine on stage in a professional, cutting-edge environment. The winner of the competition receives The ELLE CANADA New Labels® Fashion Award comprised of a $1,000 cash prize and a one-page editorial in the magazine, a one-year Outreach membership to the TFI, and participation in the TFI New Labels® Fall 2005 show at no cost. One of the finalists will receive a $500 cash prize for the most creative use of Ultrasuede®.

TFI New Labels® 2005 is proudly sponsored by Canada’s fashion-minded leaders: presenting and media sponsor ELLE CANADA, party host sponsor Vin de Pays d’Oc and platinum sponsor Toray Ultrasuede America Inc.

For details about the TFI New Labels® Fashion Design Competition, please contact tfi@fashionincubator.com or 416-971-7117. Visit www.fashionincubator.com for competition updates.

For press inquiries and designer profiles, please contact FAULHABER PR at 416-504-0768 or by email at christine@isellideas.com.

The Toronto Fashion Incubator is pleased to announce the appointment of Adam Giambrone to the board of directors of the Toronto Fashion Incubator. As a Toronto city councillor representing Ward 18, Davenport, at 27, he is a politician, archaeologist and the youngest member of Toronto City Council.
Adam’s vision for the city extends beyond ward boundaries. He serves on a number of committees and boards, including the Toronto Transit Commission, Works and Emergency Services Committee, e-City Committee, and Toronto French Committee. He was also recently named chair of the city’s newest Working Group, the Meeting Management Initiative, whose task is to design a more open and effective city council. In addition to his work as a councillor, Adam is serving his second term as federal president of the New Democratic Party of Canada. He is a regular guest panelist on Canadian radio and television, speaking on issues that affect all levels of government, in both official languages.

There’s still time for last-minute holiday shopping! Do it stress-free and order a customized TFI gift certificate for the new fashion entrepreneur in your life. Available in any generous amount, TFI gift certificates can be used to purchase any TFI item, including a one-year membership, guidebook or seminar ticket. We can ship to you via email within one business day until December 23, 2004. To order, please contact the Toronto Fashion Incubator at 416-971-7117 ext. 21 or by email at tfi@fashionincubator.com.

Willow Grant invites members of the Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI) to present their Spring 2005 collections for consideration for the TFI rack at the Willow Grant Canadian Fashion Gallery. On Tuesday, January 11, 2004, interested resident and outreach members* in the categories of women’s and men’s day and eveningwear are asked to deliver a ten minute presentation of their line at Willow Grant. The collections will be evaluated by a panel of Toronto fashion professionals and two labels will be chosen to hang for free at Willow Grant from March 1, 2005 to June 14, 2005.

The TFI rack will showcase the Toronto Fashion Incubator’s stable of talented designers. It will expose emerging labels to customers and clients who are savvy about fashion and curious about new collections and ideas making their way into the Canadian market. The judging panel will evaluate lines based on the originality of design ideas, the cohesiveness of the collection, quality of finishing and value to the customer.

The two chosen designers will be notified by Friday, January 14. It will be each of the chosen designer’s responsibility to produce 12 to 15 pieces for March 1, 2005. The designers will be paid 80% of the value of their retail sales while they hang at Willow Grant. Ten percent of sales will be donated back to the Toronto Fashion Incubator. The other ten percent will cover the cost of processing transactions and salesperson commission at Willow Grant. The value of renting a rack for a three and a half month period is approximately $1,100.00.

Presentations will take place on Tuesday, January 11 between 1:30 and 4 pm (more time may be added if there is enough interest). Willow Grant is located at 960 Queen Street West (at Shaw). Interested designers should contact Andrew Sardone at Willow Grant to schedule an appointment at 416-533-7553 or Andrew@willowgrant.com by December 24, 2004.

*This competition is not open to students. Willow Grant will be launching a separate competition this spring with fashion design schools across Canada for a special student rack at Willow Grant. Designers must present a valid TFI membership card at the presentation.

WILLOW GRANT opened at Queen and Shaw, in the heart of the Queen West Art and Design District on May 13, 2004. The store features clothing and accessories by emerging designers who rent racks that are entirely devoted to their collections. Merchandise is complimented by accessories and jewellery created by designers who have been invited to sell their work on a consignment basis. Willow Grant proudly calls itself a "Canadian Fashion Gallery" because it celebrates Canadian labels that produce top-quality fashion that emphasizes handwork and original design ideas.


Being intimately involved with the industry, you may think you have all the perspective you need on Canadian fashion, but here’s a new look from some of the country’s top curators, designers, fashion writers, historians and artists. Fashion: A Canadian Perspective is a collection of essays bound together in one recently released book that spans topics from garment factories in the late 1800s to the role of fashion journalists today and their effects on trends. It’s edited by Royal Ontario Museum fashion and costume curator Alexandra Palmer and available in paperback for $35.

TFI has got the scoop on themes, colours and fabric trends for spring 2006. The latest trend-forecasting books are here at TFI in our onsite Resource Centre. Used by retailers to plan a store’s merchandise strategy for the upcoming season, trend-forecasting books like Promostyl make it easy for a designer to plan a collection that’s in tune with buyer demand. Only TFI members have access to these coveted trend books so if you’re not a TFI member yet, what are you waiting for? Members: call today to book your Resource Centre appointment. Contact: 416-971-7117 ext. 21 or email tfi@fashionincubator.com.

Style magazine is launching styleHOMME, a new trade publication dedicated to promoting the menswear industry. Published twice yearly in January and July, styleHOMME will bring trends, fashions and news to the forefront to fuel the all-important menswear arena. The Winter/January 2005 issue will include a complete listing of more than 700 suppliers exclusive to menswear in Canada. For more information, contact style@style.ca.

You are invited to a deliciously sinful fashion and food experience taking place during Winterlicious, a festival of culinary delights in Toronto. Enjoy a fashionable brunch at The Drake Hotel followed by an exclusive sample sale featuring hip clothing and accessories by TFI designers including Juma, Rosa Costanzo, Krane, Trig, Urban Blonde, Soos, Karamea and many more. It all takes place on Saturday, February 5, 2005, at 10:00am and 1:00pm at The Drake Hotel, 1150 Queen St. W. in Toronto. Don't forget to pick up your complimentary gift bag provided by ELLE CANADA, Canada's pre-eminent fashion, beauty and lifestyle magazine. Tickets are $48 per person (including taxes and gratuity). Order early as space is limited. Call 416-531-5042 ext. 228 to make reservations. Watch for more details coming soon!

Nominate a Canadian industry member for Les Prix Mode X Awards presented by Style magazine. Award categories include: menswear, womenswear, children’s wear, outerwear, intimate apparel, streetwear, new designer, industry innovation, designer of the year and exporter of the year. Nominees will be chosen by an awards committee based on strength of brand recognition both in North America and internationally. Other decision-making factors are: strength of design, strategy and production innovation (i.e., marketing tactics, technology and technique) and commitment to upholding all relevant employment laws. Each nominee must have been in business for five years, with the exception of new designer nominees who must have been in business for less than five years. For a nomination form and more details, contact Style at style@style.ca. Entry closing date is February 1, 2005.

The Body Shop's Margot Franssen recently launched Accessorize, a hip new accessories boutique from the U.K., in Canada. With more than 210 stores around the world, it's like the Zara of accessories, but with an emphasis on fun pieces. Most of the belts, bags, hats, jewellery and hair accessories provide the trend for less and are exclusive to the store. 2614 Yonge St. in Toronto and 1167 Robson St. in Vancouver.

Kiehl’s Since 1851, the New York-based apothecary for skin and hair care products, opened a second free-standing store in Toronto at 2518 Yonge St. earlier this month to service the north Toronto crowd. Contact 416-483-1335.

For those of you who want to start a fashion business and need information NOW, TFI can ship its popular How To Start A Fashion Business and How to Prepare a Business Plan guidebooks electronically for fast and speedy delivery with NO added delivery charges, duties or other shipping costs. Available in PDF format for $25 + taxes and a $2 handling fee per book, you’ll be able to get your new fashion business up and running in no time! Don’t forget to ask about our downloadable lists of Canadian and U.S. fashion retailers, production suppliers and fashion media too. Place your order by contacting tfi@fashionincubator.com or 416-971-7117 ext. 21.

Here’s a highlight of what’s coming up in the local fashion scene, but for a full listing of local, national and international fashion and small business events go to the Fashion Calendar in our new Happenings page.

Willow Grant Call For Entry
December 24 is the last day for TFI members to contact Willow Grant at 416-533-7553 to schedule an audition for consideration of the TFI free rack opportunity (see article 3 in this issue).

TFI Holiday Closing Notice
December 24, 2004 - January 3, 2005 Toronto Fashion Incubator. We’re taking some time off to enjoy the holidays so we’ll see you on January 4, 2005, at 9:00am. We wish you a safe and happy holiday season and continued success in the New Year!

TFI's Members Monthly Networking and Brainstorming Session
Saturday, January 8, 2004, 2:00pm-4:00pm, Toronto Fashion Incubator. TFI Outreach & Resident members are invited to attend our monthly networking and brainstorming session. This is the perfect opportunity to meet and chat with your fellow members about ideas, interests and concerns you have pertaining to the fashion industry. Pre-Register before January 5, 2005. A minimum number of participants arriving is required. Please RSVP Sandra Oikawa at 416-971-7117 ext. 31or by email at rsvp@fashionincubator.com.

Get your event listed for FREE! Send TFI News your fashion or small business event with at least 30 days prior notice. Send to tfi@fashionincubator.com.


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TFI sponsors gain exposure to a targeted audience of more than 4,000 young fashion innovators and industry influencers per issue. If you would like to donate a contest item, membership reward or sponsor a TFI special event, contact Susan Langdon at tfi@fashionincubator.com or 416-971-7117 ext. 21 to learn about the benefits and exposure opportunities your company will enjoy.

Contact TFI at tfi@fashionincubator.com or call 416-971-7117 ext. 21.

NETWORK WITH YOUR PEERS: For a list of TFI members, look through Resident Profiles and Outreach Listings on Our Members page.

TFI NEWS is published by the Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI), an innovative, non-profit, small business centre established in 1987. TFI creates a sense of community among its members by delivering its comprehensive programs and benefits with an approach that is professional, passionate and nurturing.

TFI NEWS is a FREE newsletter publication sent to all TFI members and to those who requested it. Please forward this newsletter to other interested individuals and help spread the word! Information is intended for interactive and informative purposes only. Submissions and feedback are welcome from all and should be sent to tfi@fashionincubator.com.

To subscribe or unsubscribe to TFI NEWS please contact tfi@fashionincubator.com or call
416-971-7117 ext. 21.

Toronto Fashion Incubator
106 Dovercourt Road
Toronto, ON
M6J 3C3

Tel: 416-971-7117
Fax: 416-971-6717
Email: tfi@fashionincubator.com

Office hours: Monday through Friday, 9:00am to 5:00pm EST, closed noon to 1:00pm daily and statutory holidays. NOW OPEN 11:00am to 5:00pm every first Saturday of the month by appointment.

© Copyright 2004 The Toronto Centre for the Promotion of Fashion Design (Toronto Fashion Incubator, TFI). No part of TFI NEWS may be copied or duplicated in any form or by any means without the prior written consent of the Toronto Fashion Incubator.

This publication is distributed for information purposes only and with the understanding that TFI is not responsible for the results of any actions taken by any person in reliance on such information, nor for any errors or omissions contained herein. TFI expressly disclaims any and all liability arising out of the use of this publication or any part thereof by any person.



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