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TFI News July 2007

TFI News
A free fashion industry newsletter for innovative designers and small business entrepreneurs

Brought to you by:
Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI)
Toronto’s Non-Profit Small Business Centre
Developed To Nurture, Support and Promote New Fashion Entrepreneurs

1987 – 2007
Celebrating 20 Years of TFI in 2007

Contact TFI at tfi@fashionincubator.com

Sponsored by:
TEDCO, Toronto Economic Development Corporation

July 2007
Volume 15, Issue 5

2. TFI Press and Buyers Breakfast Applications
3. Lantern of Hope
4. Cost-Effective Marketing Strategies
5. Scene & Heard
6. Upcoming Events
7. Top Picks

The Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI) has found a new home at 285 Manitoba Dr. in historic Exhibition Place in Toronto. The 100-year, domed, brick structure was constructed as the Railways Building in 1907, designed for the Grand Trunk, Cape Breton and Canadian Pacific Railways by Exhibition Place architect George W. Gouinlock. The building was familiarly known as the Music Building for many years during the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE). It was nearly destroyed by a fire in 1987 but has since been restored.


Left The restored domed ceiling
Right: Pre-renovation, a view into the historic Music Building

“We are thrilled to be moving into a City of Toronto-owned, heritage building,” said Susan Langdon, TFI’s executive director. “The building is breathtaking, plus we won’t have to worry about a developer buying the building again.”

TFI is moving from its present location at 106 Dovercourt Rd., as condo developer Baywood Homes bought the building this year from Lady Western of Canada Ltd. Baywood is demolishing TFI’s offices to make way for a model suite and sales office for the Bohemiam Embassy Lofts, which it is currently developing on Queen Street West. TFI’s lease expires August 31, 2007.

Although Langdon and the TFI Board of Directors are confident that the decision to move to the Ex provides the safest option for TFI in the long term, the initial move-in poses a challenge for the non-profit organization. TFI will occupy only one-third of the building until the other two-thirds are fully renovated and available. “It’ll be cozy for a little while as offices, studios and a mini production facility will be crammed into 2,700 sq. ft.,” said Langdon. “We’ll be able to accommodate three small studios in this first phase of our move-in, expanding back to 10 studios when we take over occupancy of the remaining space.”

Exhibition Place began in 1904 when the first installation of the CNE was established. The grounds are well-connected by public transit via GO train service (Exhibition GO Station) and TTC (Harbourfront and Bathurst streetcars, and the Dufferin bus, which runs 24/7 to and from Dufferin subway station).

TFI’s New Address:
285 Manitoba Drive
Exhibition Place
Toronto, ON M6K 3C3

Telephone and fax numbers will remain the same:
T: 416-971-7117
F: 416-971-6717

To learn more about Exhibition Place, visit
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exhibition_Place#History_of_the_Grounds or www.explace.on.ca/main.html

2. Spring 2008 TFI Press and Buyers Breakfast Applications
Commencing August 20, 2007, the Toronto Fashion Incubator will be accepting applications for its Spring 2008 Press & Buyers Breakfast event. Slated to take place on October 16, 2007, this exclusive opportunity gives TFI apparel and accessory designers the chance to meet, greet and schmooze with Toronto’s top fashion media and retail buyers.

“The TFI Press Breakfast opened the gates of possibilities for young designers by giving us the opportunity to showcase our designs and receive important feedback from industry VIPs. It is the MOST VALUABLE two hours a designer can spend by introducing themselves and their product to Canada’s media. The contacts made in that short time would otherwise take MONTHS for designers to do on their own.” – Loranne Kettlewell, jewellery designer

"TFI maintained the highest standards throughout the event to ensure the fashion media’s return next season. It was a great way for designers to stand apart and get your press kit to the top of the pile. The media was excited and seemed inspired to include my spring 2007 collection in upcoming articles.” -Jennifer Reilly, jewellery designer

“The TFI Press Breakfast provided me with an amazing opportunity to present my new accessories line to members of the press and select buyers. I could NEVER have assembled such a HIGH LEVEL AUDIENCE on my own. Hands down, membership with TFI is the BEST money I have spent this year!” – Leah Bazian, accessory designer

TFI members will be emailed an application on August 20, 2007. Deadline to apply is September 17, 2007. Space is limited. Not a TFI member yet? Call to join and request an application by contacting TFI or by calling 416-971-7117 x 21.

Check out past coverage of TFI’s Press & Buyers Breakfast at:
www.fashionincubator.com/happenings/news/inside-fashion-pretty-ladies.shtml and at

3. Lantern of Hope
Toronto-based designer Thien Le is embarking on a new venture to create a line of women’s golf wear. Inspired by the latest technical and performance fabrics, the Le T. golf wear line features colourful, comfortable, body-flattering styles that “can be worn from the first tee through cocktails and dinner,” says Le. The collection promises to be versatile, exciting and complete with a line of accessories to match. The line’s debut on July 10, 2007, at the Oakdale Golf and Country Club in Toronto attracted numerous interests from pro shops and retail outlets.

Thien Le continues to create custom designs for actors Shirley Douglas and Colm Feore, events manager Barbara Hershenhorn, members of Toronto’s media and publicity personalities. Red carpet clients include Iman, Polly Shannon, Wendy Crewson, Elisha Cuthbert, Leelee Sobieski and Tia Carrera.

A portion of the proceeds from the Le T. golf wear collection will be donated to the Lantern of Hope charity, a foundation started by Le to help orphaned children in Vietnam. For further information contact info@let-golf.com, info@thienle.com or call 416-260-2324.

Thien Le’s new women’s golf line for spring 2008

4. Cost-Effective Marketing Strategies
By Danielle Ker

Marketing is key to any successful venture, because without sales there would be no business. But for small business start-ups implementing a marketing strategy can often be a financial challenge. On June 13, 2007, the Toronto Fashion Incubator hosted a P&G Beauty-sponsored seminar and webcast on cost-effective marketing strategies to help budding fashion entrepreneurs.

Speakers Nathalie Atkinson, Toronto-based arts journalist and the National Post’s resident style and shopping columnist, Jamil Juma, creative director for JUMA and TFI Resident, and Andrew Zimbel, founder of Amazing Food Service, discussed various innovative marketing tactics on how to reach one’s targeted customer. Here’s a quick look at some of the ideas that were shared by our experts:

*Website: make sure it’s consistently branded and include a password-protected section for buyers and media
*E-Newsletters: keeps you in the front of people’s minds
*Promo Postcards: these don’t have to be overly expensive, but make sure the quality and design are consistent with your brand
*Networking: volunteer for fashion events and gain valuable contacts

Want more info? TFI’s got the full scoop in the member-exclusive, in-house TFI Resource Centre. TFI Members: please make an appointment to visit the TFI in-house Resource Centre and check out the “Sales & Marketing” drawer. Not a TFI Member? Become one today! You can also purchase a full audio of this seminar on CD through TFI Shop.

5. Scene & Heard

Win a Trip for Two to New York City!
Fashionwatch.com is sponsoring a New York Fashion Week contest. The prize is a trip for two to New York including two hotel rooms with double occupancy at the Milford Plaza Hotel situated in Times Square, tickets to four shows and a travel voucher for $500. Participants must have a valid passport and be allowed to travel to the U.S. For more information, visit www.fashionprizes.com/2007/newyorkfashionweek.html.

The SavvyMom Mompreneur™ of the Year Award
Are you a savvy, Canadian Mompreneur™? You could win over $18,000 in cash and professional services to help take your business to the next level. Nominate yourself or someone you know! Visit www.mompreneuraward.com/# for eligibility criteria, list of prizes and more information.

Going Solo
Two of the dueling design duos from the 2007 TFI New Labels competition have gone solo. ELLE Canada New Labels Award winner Sarah Nicol from Quelque Filles is now designing alone under the Sara Nicol label. Competitor and finalist Phoebe Gao is also going it alone and continuing under the OZEN label. For more information, contact Nicol at sarah.nicol@rogers.com and Gao at fashionyugao@yahoo.ca.

Thank You To TFI Donors
Thank you to our donors for your support of our non-profit organization. Your financial contribution enables TFI to carry on its important work of encouraging job creation and economic development in the community. This month we recognize donors Elena Soni, Michael Gaughan and TFI benefactor Fouad Rizk for their kind donations to TFI. Rizk, founder of Nado Inc., a new womenswear firm, made a generous $500 donation to TFI when he became a TFI Outreach member in July.

Canadian Designer John Warden Dies At Age 67
Fashion designer John Warden, a pioneer of Canada’s fashion industry, died June 29, 2007, in Montreal of cancer. Warden, who was recognized as one of Canada’s top designers in the 1960s and ‘70s, won many awards throughout his 40-year career, including the inaugural Melcher Award for best Canadian fashion designer in 1973 and Canadian Fashion Designer of the Year in 1983. “When I was in high school, John Warden was one of my fashion heroes,” said Susan Langdon, executive director of the Toronto Fashion Incubator. “He and his peers, such as Margaret Godfrey of Bagatelle, Michel Robichaud, Leo Chevalier and Marilyn Brooks, were the first to put Canadian fashion on the national and international map and that inspired me to follow fashion as a career.” Warden is survived by his son, Marc Steven, and three grandchildren.

Model Behaviour
Gail McInnes recently joined the Plutino Group, bringing over 10 years experience in the fashion industry. Most recently, McInnes was senior agent/marketing and promotions director at B&M Models. Email McInnes, call 416-504-1605 or visit the website at www.plutinogroup.com. In other news, model agent Jarrett Plyley has made a move from Stylus Models to book the roster of female models at Ford’s Toronto office. The former model has quickly made a name in the fast-paced and competitive market. Keep a look out for Plyley's credit on the Ford Models website at www.fordmodels.com.

Escada Redesigns And Reopens Flagship In Toronto
On July 18, ESCADA reopened its flagship store at 110 Bloor St., W. in Toronto with a decadent VIP cocktail reception for over 200 Canadian style makers and media. "The redesign and reopening of the ESCADA flagship store evokes a new era for ESCADA," said Joe Caporrella, president of ESCADA. ESCADA was established by Margaretha and Wolfgang Ley in 1976, the company is represented by over 400 stores in more than 60 countries. It is considered one of the world's leading luxury brands. The ESCADA collections include clothing, accessories, eyewear and fragrances.









Inside Escada at 110 Bloor St. W.

Joe Fresh Kids Debut Under The Big Top
The new Joe Fresh Style for Kids collection was unveiled under the "Big Top" on July 25, 2007, at Loblaws, on Queen’s Quay West in Toronto. High-energy performances from Canadian double-dutch skipping troupe, Lincoln Leapers, trampoline and acrobatic acts, stilt walkers and jugglers wowed the crowd which included Toronto's top fashion makers and society moms, dads and kids. The fall 2007 collection featured fashionable, affordable separates for boys and girls from newborn to size 14. Examples of retail prices include an infant’s undershirt for $4 retail, shoes and boots for $14 and a boy’s zipped puffy vest for $24. The Joe Fresh Style for Kids collection will be available only in select Loblaws Superstores this fall. To find the location nearest you, visit www.joe.ca.

Photography by George Pimentel

Judges Join Supermodel Iman On Project Runway Canada
World-renowned style icon and supermodel Iman will host Project Runway Canada, which recently wrapped up production in Toronto. Premiering on Monday, October 8, at 10 p.m. ET/PT, the series will showcase 12 designers competing for a chance to show collections at a premiere fashion event in fall 2007. Along with winning $100,000 to help finance their fashion line, the top collection will also be featured in an Elle Canada spread. Canadian designer Brian Bailey will serve as mentor, guiding the competitors through each of their challenges. Elle Canada magazine editor-in-chief Rita Silvan and designer Shawn Hewson, founder of Bustle Clothing, also join host Iman as judges for the series. For more details visit www.slice.ca/Shows/ProjectRunway.aspx.









Supermodel Iman

More TFI Residents On The Go
On July 31, 2007, TFI Resident designers Nada Shepherd of NADA, and Alia and Jamil Juma of JUMA relocated to new studios to accommodate their growing businesses. For location details, contact Shepherd at nada@nadadesigns.com and JUMA at info@juma.ca.

Seeking Successful Women Trade Advocates For OWIT-Toronto’s Annual JoAnna Townsend Award
Nominations for qualified candidates are now open for the Organization of Women in International Trade (OWIT)-Toronto’s annual JoAnna Townsend Award. The award recognizes one outstanding woman in Ontario who, through her business and personal networks, creates opportunities to actively support women entrepreneurs achieve success in international business. This outstanding woman may participate on for-profit and non-profit boards, government committees and/or industry associations and acts as a role model and mentor for women entrepreneurs. OWIT-Toronto launched the award in 2004 to recognize an outstanding women's exporting champion in Ontario and to honour the memory of JoAnna Townsend, a committed women's trade advocate who passed away in January 2004 after a battle with cancer. Women involved in all industry areas are welcome to come forward. You can nominate a worthy candidate or even nominate yourself. The JoAnna Townsend Award is a way to recognize extraordinary individuals who assist women in international business. In 2005, TFI’s executive director, Susan Langdon, was honoured with this prestigious award. The winner and two runners-up will be announced at the annual BBQ to be held on September 18, 2007. For more information about the JoAnna Townsend Award, including a nomination form, please click here. Deadline for nominations is July 31, 2007.
6. Upcoming Events

August 12 – 14, 2007
Mode Accessories
Doubletree International Plaza Hotel, 655 Dixon Rd., Toronto. Fall/winter 2007 accessories trade show for retail buyers. For more information, visit www.mode-accessories.com.

August 23 - 25, 2007
Fashion & Design Festival – Toronto
Die-hard fashionistas can get their fashion fix at this free fashion extravaganza featuring Canadian designers, DJs and bands. Organized by Sensation Mode, producers of Fashion & Design Montreal and Montreal Fashion Week, the three-day festival will see Dundas Square (at Yonge and Dundas streets) transformed into a flamboyant catwalk. Catch the TFI show on August 25 at 7:00pm on the main stage. Designers participating include D’Mila, Engelbert Gayagoy for 1.618, ICANDY Couture, Jason Meyers, OZEN, Quelque Filles, Desperately Different, Revolve and Hortense Salvatore. For more information, visit www.sensationmode.com.

August 27 – 31, 2007
Moving Week at TFI
Our offices, studios and programs will be temporarily unavailable while we pack up and hit the road to our new location. To TFI members and our future members, we thank you in advance for your patience and understanding. We apologize for any inconveniences but look forward to welcoming you in our new home soon.

September 4 - 8, 2007
Downtown Calgary Fashion Week
Calgary’s second annual event includes fashion seminars, local fashion shows and a gala. Visit www.calgarydowntown.com/fashionweek/ for more information. Designers interested in participating in the 2007 Downtown Calgary Fashion Week can contact fashion@downtowncalgary.com.

September 15 – 20, 2007
London Fashion Week
Natural History Museum, London. Designer runway shows for spring 2008. For more information, visit www.londonfashionweek.co.uk.

September 16 – 18, 2007
The Train and Platform 2
Two fashion trade shows featuring women’s ready-to-wear and accessories from Europe, USA and Asia. See international designer collections at The Train and bridge/contemporary collections at Platform 2. For more information, visit www.thetrainewyork.com and www.platform2newyork.com.

September 17, 2007
TFI Press and Buyers Breakfast Application Deadline
Today is the LAST day to submit an application to participate in TFI’s annual event for new, emerging fashion designers. If you are a TFI member with a ready-to-wear apparel or accessories collection and want to meet important retailers and fashion press face-to-face, you cannot afford to miss this cost-effective and valuable promotional/ marketing event. Send your submission to Toronto Fashion Incubator, 285 Manitoba Drive, Exhibition Place, Toronto, Ontario, M6K 3C3 by 5:00pm today.

September 24 - 29, 2007
B.C. Fashion Week
Designers from British Columbia and Western Canada present their spring 2008 collections. For more information, contact designers@bcfashionweek.com or visit www.bcfashionweek.com/.

October 9 -12, 2007
Montreal Fashion Week
1430 de Bleury St., Montreal. Montreal and Quebec designers present their spring 2008 collections. For more information, contact info@sensationmode.com or visit www.mfw.ca/.

October 16, 2007
TFI Press & Buyers Breakfast Spring 2008
285 Manitoba Dr., Exhibition Place, Toronto. Fashion media and retail buyers will get a sneak peek at spring 2008 at the Toronto Fashion Incubator’s annual breakfast event featuring some of its best apparel and accessory designers. By invitation only to accredited media and fashion retailers. Download the Press or Buyers accreditation form here.

October 22 – 27, 2007
L’Oreal Fashion Week Spring 2008
Liberty Grand, 25 British Columbia Rd., Toronto. Canadian designers present their spring 2008 collections to buyers and media. For more information visit www.lorealfashionweek.ca.

Interested in having your event posted? Send your submission with a minimum of 30 days notice to TFI.


Interested in applying to the TFI New Labels 2008 competition? Catch the 2007 show and find out what judges look for in a winning line

Relive the fun of TFI’s 20th anniversary gala party and celebrity runway show

Download Berlin Fashion Week’s event program, which includes an extensive listing of showrooms, sales agencies and retail stores



CHANGING YOUR ADDRESS OR EMAIL ADDRESS? Keep us updated so you don’t miss out on important opportunities and notices. Contact TFI at tfi@fashionincubator.com or call 416-971-7117 x 21 with your latest contact info.

For a list of TFI members, look through Resident Profiles and Outreach Listings at www.fashionincubator.com/our_members/index.shtml.

The Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI), an innovative, non-profit, small business centre established in 1987, publishes TFI NEWS. TFI creates a sense of community among its members by delivering 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 information purposes only. Submissions and feedback are welcome from all and should be sent to TFI.

To subscribe or unsubscribe to TFI NEWS please email us or call
416-971-7117 x 21.

Toronto Fashion Incubator
106 Dovercourt Road
Toronto, ON
Canada 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 holidays.

Directions To TFI
We’re located on Queen Street West in Toronto, one stop light east of Dufferin. Look for the TFI sign on the southwest corner of Queen Street West and Dovercourt Road in the West Queen West Arts + Design District.

© Copyright 2007 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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