Beyond the little black dress: Cranking up the colour on Day 4 of Fashion Week

By , on October 23, 2015


Formal wear creations from Malorie Urbanovitch (L&R) and Rachel Sin (M) (Photos from World MasterCard Fashion Week)
Formal wear creations from Malorie Urbanovitch (L&R) and Rachel Sin (M) (Photos from World MasterCard Fashion Week)

TORONTO – Move over, little black dress: homegrown designers are offering women viable formal wear alternatives for the warmer months ahead.

Whether their preference is for more freeform looks or body-conforming designs, styles for all tastes steeped in shades spanning a full rainbow spectrum are on the horizon for spring and summer.

Here are Day 4 highlights from Toronto’s World MasterCard Fashion Week.

It takes two: Malorie Urbanovitch embarks on partnerships with artist and retailer

Malorie Urbanovitch enlisted some unique creative company for her latest line.

The award-winning designer teamed with Edmonton artist Bernadette Paetz who applied handpainted prints incorporated by Urbanovitch in her spring-summer range.

“Her work kind of explores the female figure and the absurdity of beauty and beauty ideals,” Urbanovitch said backstage following her show.

“I thought it would be a really interesting collaboration to work with her on a fashion line which is obviously about beauty ideals.”

The designer said she drew considerable inspiration from seeing the beauty in nature’s irregularities.

“I wanted to have some rawness contrasting with the sleekness of the designs.”

The play on imperfection was best conveyed in the use of frayed edges, infusing a delicate worn-in quality to colourful, fluttering dresses in green and red. Rounded hems were emblematic of natural landscapes showcasing ocean waves and rolling hills, she added.

Urbanovitch is already expanding her retail presence with her collection purchased by Canadian retailer Simons. The company is in the midst of a cross-Canada expansion, but Simons is already familiar to the designer who has worked there as a stylist.

“This season, because it was a later buy, we weren’t able to do a very big production run so we’re just doing it in the Edmonton store. For next season we’re hoping to go to all of the Simons stores.”

Rachel Sin goes for the gold

Rachel Sin is ready to shake up office and after-hours attire with a reinvigorated approach to wardrobe essentials.

“‘Stay Gold’ means to stay true to yourself and to be able to go to work but wear(ing) something that still expresses your own style,” Sin said of her latest line showcasing everything from shimmering sequinned sheaths to playful, pretty dresses in citrus shades.

“Still be sexy and a little bit edgy and not be that boring two-piece suit.”

Sin made ample use of jersey in the collection as well as ponte – a double-stretch knit – to give the garments of structure, not to mention shapeliness for the wearer.

She enlivened designs with eye-catching accents from studded blazers to touches of see-through mesh and lace on skirts and jumpsuits.

“I think the collection is very versatile,” said Sin. “I think we try to show it to be able to mix and match on the runway, and even the blazers and the skirts you can wear with different pieces.”

Fashion Week concludes Friday.