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Posted Tuesday, March 31, 2015

TFI News
A free fashion industry newsletter

Brought to you by:
Toronto Fashion Incubator (TFI)
A dynamic non-profit organization offering made-to-measure business solutions for new & established fashion designers, entrepreneurs, professionals & students

Sponsored by:
City of Toronto Economic Development





Volume 23, Issue 1

1. TFI New Labels, May 4, 2015
2. Press & Buyers Event Returns To WMCFW
3. World MasterCard Fashion Week
4. Scene & Heard
5. Thank You TFI Donors
6. Top Picks
7. Fashion Calendar


1. TFI NEW LABELS®, May 4, 2015
Dress to be seen on May 4, 2015 when the Toronto Fashion Incubator hosts its annual fundraiser and fashion show, TFI New Labels® at One King West. Media partner FLARE will be scouting the crowd for the best dressed during the pre-show cocktail reception where three hundred fashion-savvy guests will enjoy Benjamin Bridge wine and sparkling wine while savoring delicious hors d'oeuvres.

This year's runway show, made possible with leading sponsors Mantella Corporation and City of Toronto and produced by Hans Koechling of The Image Is, will feature the fall/winter 2015 collections from the TFI New Labels® competition finalists and looks from the SpongeBob Design Challenge designers. Creative direction for show make-up will be provided by M.A.C and show hair by Salon Daniel. Event decor creative direction will be provided by Jackie O Floral Affairs & Event Design.

The winner of 2015's Most Promising New Labels Award presented by Suzanne Rogers will win $25,000 cash and a feature in FLARE. The winner of the SpongeBob Design Challenge presented by Nickelodeon/Viacom's Carmen Martinez will win $10,000. Both award announcements will take place that night.

TFI New Labels® is a must-attend event on the fashion calendar favoured by Toronto's most notable fashion influencers and stylish industry insiders. Net event proceeds will benefit community programming offered by the non-profit TFI. Limited tickets are now by clicking here.


2. Press & Buyers Event Returns To WMCFW
The Toronto Fashion Incubator’s TFI Press & Buyers Brunch tradeshow returns to World MasterCard® Fashion Week (WMCFW) on March 25 and March 26 from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. in The Studio.

Inventive apparel and accessory designers will reveal their latest fall/winter 2015 apparel and accessory lines at the boutique style tradeshow. A judging panel of fashion industry experts assessed numerous designer press kits based on criteria including trendiness, design and branding consistency, and marketability to curate an outstanding roster of Canadian talent.

Showcasing designers include: Caged Collective (jewellery), Christopher Paunil (evening & bridal), Eläma (fur vests & accessories), Erin Fitzpatrick Bridal (gala & bridal accessories), Hatitude (hats), Jenny Greco (jewellery), Jon De Porter Jewelry (jewellery), Laura Siegel (womenswear), Mary Young, (lingerie and loungewear), Miriam Baker (womenswear), Paula Callejas (swimwear), Sakina Jewellery (jewellery), Simple Smiles & Co. (knitted hats & accessories), The Wild North Apparel (outerwear), Thomas Henry Made (menswear), Tonia DeBellis (womenswear) and Zarucci (eveningwear).

Confirmed guests to date include retailers Andrews, By Tocca, Holt Renfrew, Hudson's Bay Company and Shopgirls. Media include FLARE, ELLE Canada, Sharp magazine, The Kit, Canadian Press, CBC, ET Canada, Global TV and more.


3. World MasterCard Fashion Week
Canada’s fashion designers will hit the catwalk March 23 - 27 at World MasterCard Fashion Week. Being held under familiar tents at David Pecaut Square in Toronto, this season’s calendar features 26 runway shows, two official after-parties and TFI’s two-day Press & Buyers Brunch trade show.

Highlights of the week include presentations by Sid Neigum, whose highly anticipated show is being fully sponsored as part of his Mercedes-Benz Start Up award win, Mikhael Kale, who makes his runway-room debut after showing several seasons in the smaller Studio location, and David Dixon who celebrates 20 years in fashion with his 40th fashion show.

Stay tuned for TFI News’ fashion week review in the next issue. For the calendar of events, visit

4. Scene & Heard

TFI Welcomes Sylvia Mantella To Its Honorary Board
Sylvia Mantella, chief marketing officer at Mantella Corporation, joined TFI's prestigious Honorary Board in January 2015 joining fellow influencers Jeanne Beker, Nicholas Mellamphy and Simona Shnaider. Mantella has been an avid supporter of TFI's New Labels® event since 2012 and will now continue her support of the non-profit year-round.

Moving Forward
After five years of residency at TFI, Christopher Paunil and Chalo (Barrueta) Hancock are moving to a new studio location in Toronto. Known for their stunning bridal gowns which are sold at Kleinfeld at Hudson's Bay Company, the dynamic duo made their ready-to-wear debut as competition finalists at TFI New Labels in 2013 and participated again in 2014. You can reach Chris and Chalo at or by contacting 877-772-8645.

If you're passionate, dedicated and a creative thinker, we want you on our team at the Toronto Fashion Incubator! Four positions are available for immediate placement. If interested, review the job descriptions here.

Big Changes At Joe Fresh
Filling a new appointment at Canadian-owned fast fashion retailer Joe Fresh, Henriette Ernst, senior vice president for womenswear design, will carry out the vision of founder Joe Mimran, by providing comfortable, casual clothes that offer good quality and fit. Ernst has more than 20 years of experience working at such notable labels as Calvin Klein Collection, Celine and Jil Sander. She will be based at the store's New York office. In bigger news, in March 2016 Mimran declared he would be leaving his namesake clothing line and retail chain and announced the appointment of Mario Grauso as the new president. Grauso was hired in 2013 to lead Joe Fresh’s international expansion. Mimran will be joining the cast of venture capitalists on CBC’s hit show Dragon’s Den.

France Bans Thin Models, Issues Fine
France is taking a serious stance against anorexia by considering a new law that could issue a fine of €75k and a maximum one year prison sentence for agencies or designers hiring overly thin models. The law is expected to be approved.

Berlin-Based Bread & Butter Files For Bankruptcy
One of Europe's top tradeshows, Bread & Butter, filed for bankruptcy in December 2014 shortly after canceling its January show. An insufficient number of exhibitors over several past seasons was cited as the reason for the event’s financial woes.

MoMa Acquires 4D-Printed Dress
The Museum of Modern Art in New York recently acquired the world's first 4D-printed dress. Created by design studio Nervous System and printed at New York's Shapeways lab, the knee-length nylon dress requires no stitching, seams or assembly. For more information and to view a video about the technology, visit

Nordstrom Debuts Second Store In Ottawa
On March 4, U.S. retailer Nordstrom opened its second Canadian location in Ottawa, Ontario. According to the Ottawa Sun, a throng of enthusiastic shoppers lined up for the opening at Rideau Centre as early as 7:00am. Nordstrom opened its first Canadian store in Calgary’s Chinook Centre last fall.

Karl Lagerfeld’s Toronto Connection
Uber designer Karl Lagerfeld, creative director of Chanel, has entered an exclusive partnership with CD Capital Developments and Freed Developments to provide creative direction for two lobby spaces in the Art Shoppe Lofts + Condos, a new mixed use development at Yonge and Eglinton in Toronto. Lagerfeld is expected to attend an invitation-only event in April to launch the project. The Art Shoppe Lofts + Condos will be located at 2131 Yonge St.

Closing Shop In Canada
Target Canada, Sony Corp., Mexx Canada, Smart Set, Parasuco Retail Inc. and Boutique Jacob are a few of the big name apparel retailers closing shop in Canada and Quebec-based Bikini Village may be joining the list. The company, which employs about 400 people and has 52 stores in Eastern Canada, secured bankruptcy protection in February. The chain has up to six months to come up with a plan to finance its $6 million in debt.

Second Season at TOM*FW
Toronto Men’s Fashion Week celebrated its second season February 25 - 27 in a new location at College Park in Toronto. In a space formerly occupied by DeBoer’s furniture store, TOM*FW founder Jeff Rustia assembled sixteen designers who presented their fall/winter 2015 collections. Several Toronto Maple Leaf players snagged front row seats at Garrison Bespoke and notable Torontonians such as Jake Gold (Canadian Idol), Rudy Blair (680 News) and Kristian Bruun (Orphan Black) strutted their stuff in the celebrity MensFashion4Hope show. At the show’s finale, Tom Mihalik, owner of Tom’s Place boutique, made a $10,000 donation to the Kol Hope Foundation for Children. TOM*FW returns this summer for the spring 2016 season although dates and a location have not yet been released.

CAFA 2015
The Canadian Arts and Fashion Awards (CAFA) made its second annual debut at the Royal York Hotel on January 31. Founders Brittney Kuczynski, Vicky Milner and Susan Hart did not disappoint the hundreds of designers, stylists, celebrities and industry VIP who anticipated enjoying a glamorous, black-tie, star-studded gala. The spectacular evening began with a red carpet celebration of Canadian fashion. Philanthropist Suzanne Rogers wore Greta Constantine, socialite Jenna Bitove wore Mikael D and TFI’s Susan Langdon wore Sid Neigum. Guests were treated to a sumptuous three-course dinner during which eleven awards were presented in categories such as Designer of the Year, Model of the Year, Outstanding Achievement and Emerging Accessory Designer of the Year. Winning his fourth award within three years, TFI-based Sid Neigum captured the Emerging Designer of the Year title and $10,000 from award sponsor Swarovski. In 2012, Neigum won The Suzanne Rogers Award for Most Promising Designer in TFI’s New Labels competition, in 2014 he won the Mercedes-Benz Start Up award and also in 2014, he won the Minnie Mouse design competition sponsored by Disney. For a full list of award winners, visit The evening wrapped up with a high-energy after party where beauty sponsor Sephora provided touch ups and samples.


5. Thank You 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 thank Benefactors Olga Koel and Julia Leitch, and Contributors Vesna Lucic, Catena Santoro, Evelina Agostini, Sume Ndumbe-Eyoh, Catherine Knoll, Minling Pan, Mary Duldouras and Natasha Vassell for their very kind donations. If you like reading TFI News, please make a donation to our non-profit by clicking here. Donor categories: Contributor, $50 and under; Supporter, $50 to $100; Benefactor, $100 to $500; Patron, $500 and up.

6. Top Picks
Check out this impressive video about TFI created by our Wexford Collegiate interns Donte Colley and Tamiya Allen
Spring 2017 print and colour direction
TFI video produced by our March break interns Donte and Tamiya
All of your fashion tradeshow questions answered!
10 Best Ways to Promote Your Event
Open calls and entries for emerging designers
A sourcing site for designers
7. Fashion Calendar

March 23 - 27, 2015
Fall/winter 2015 runway shows featuring emerging and established Canadian designers

FIRST STEPS TO EXPORTING - Canada Ontario Export Forum
March 31, 2015
Learn about government export programs you can tap into

April 8, 2015
Gain tips to boost sales & media exposure

MAY 4, 2015 at One King West
Enjoy an open bar, hors d'oeuvres & the TFI New Labels fashion show at TFI's annual fundraiser

May 4, 2015
Who will win $10,000 in the SpongeBob SquarePants Design Challenge?

May 6, 2015
Learn how to grow your business using cloud applications at this all-day session

September 10 - 14, 2015
Tradeshow featuring men's, women's, children's, sports & western wear

September 18 - 22, 2015
Spring 2016 designer collections and fashion shows

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Editor-In-Chief, Susan Langdon
Senior Editor, Doris Montanera

© Copyright 2015 The Toronto Centre for the Promotion of Fashion Design (O/A 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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