Woudenberg is an androgynous and avant-garde jewelry label that thrives to bring consumers creative and original pieces. The Woudenberg patron is a risk taker, someone who thinks for themselves and is independent and strong. These qualities are epitomized by Jenn Nyugen AKA @JNOUVEAU.
Woudenberg is available online at www.shop.emilywoudenberg.com.
CANADIAN-FASHION.CA: Describe yourself in one sentence:
JNOUVEAU: I am obsessed with the peculiar, glitter, the art of fashion, and letterforms!
CANADIAN-FASHION.CA: What do you love about Emily Woudenberg?
JNOUVEAU: Emily is the strongest and most independent individual I know. She is extremely passionate about every project she sets forth on and is very funny. Emily is very funny.
CANADIAN-FASHION.CA: How did you find out about Emily Woudenberg ?
JNOUVEAU: I met Emily at school. We started talking after I noticed her jewelry. We’ve been friends since, the rest is history.
CANADIAN-FASHION.CA: What is your favourite way to wear Emily Woudenberg ?
JNOUVEAU: Woudenberg pieces are bold, edgy, yet versatile. I can wear her concrete pieces with any outfit. Therefore, I don’t really have a favourite way to wear Woudenberg. Her pieces work great with every outfit I have.
CANADIAN-FASHION.CA: To whom would you recommend Emily Woudenberg products?
JNOUVEAU: I would recommend Woudenberg to any strong, edgy personality who needs something bold and different in their wardrobe.
Custom Woudenberg X JNOUVEAU necklace.
Canadian-Fashion.ca started the “Me and My Patron” feature to celebrate Canadian Fashion patrons. Please read more about this feature here.
Dream Out Loud Tees is a line of inspiration t-shirts started in 2012 by CG Chen, a graphic designer located in Toronto. Her favourite patron is Jeff He, a student at The University of Western Ontario. You can purchase Dream Out Loud T-shirts at www.dreamoutloudtees.bigcartel.com
Canadian-Fashion.ca: What do you love about Dream Out Loud?
Jeff He: I love that everything about Dream Out Loud is inspirational, from the person behind the start-up to what the brand is all about: spreading inspiration by means of inspiring quotes written in creative style. My personal favorite is the one which says “The only limits we have are the ones we place on ourselves”. Aside from how amazing the typography looks, I really identify with this quote based on my own life experiences. I find that I often surprise myself with how much I can accomplish when I set my mind to something, but also how shockingly little when I am unmotivated. So in a sense, this quote represents who I am and will always be a positive reminder to me of my potential while I wear it. What’s great is that other people may also find inspiration in it when they see my shirt!
C-F.ca: How did you find out about Dream Out Loud?
JH: Dream Out Loud was started by one of my best friends who I’ve known since childhood. During a family gathering this past summer, she shared her ambition to start up a t-shirt line with me. Of course, neither of us knew at that point that it would be called Dream Out Loud, but I don’t think it could have turned out any better. At first, I was excited for CG, but was naturally a little wary about her prospects given that there were already so many t-shirt brands out there. But I remained encouraging because I knew that, whether success of failure, this was something positive and if anyone was to make it a success, it would be CG. Not because of her circumstances, in fact, everything in her life was against her at that point, but because I knew she was talented and I saw her passion.
When I saw Dream Out Loud a few months ago, I was completely shocked by the progress CG had made on her own. She had an awesome brand, complete with a great line of t-shirts she designed from scratch, models who were all professionally stunning, fashion show debuts, and a facebook page that was growing in popularity. The momentum kept building and today, in merely 4 month time, CG has an online store selling her t-shirts, retail partnerships, a professional video introducing her brand, and future conference meetings set up, on top of regularly updated model photos sporting her gear.
From my perspective, it felt like CG never looked back for a second and kept fighting despite all odds, and that is why I find her so inspiring. Keep fighting CG!
C-F.ca: What is your favourite way to wear Dream Out Loud products?
JH: I will be getting my DOL shirts this Saturday when I pay CG a visit, so I won’t know until then. But I’m thinking I would have to wear it in such a way that the design can be seen. A cardigan with one button knotted close to the waist or completely open is probably the most viable option for winter. For summer when it’s warmer, there’s a lot more options. I’ve never been this excited to get t-shirts, I bought two!
C-F.ca: To whom would you recommend Dream Out Loud products to?
JH: I would definitely recommend Dream Out Loud to anyone between 15-30 years old, both male and female. The design is very hip and high in contrast (being black and white), which makes it quite attention grabbing and easy to compliment with other clothing. But the best part about it is that it spreads a positive message that really strikes big with people of this age group who all have big dreams and limitless potential. Dream Out Loud, being a brand still in its infancy and created by a teenager, embodies this very theme of big dreams and promise, which gives me all the more reason to support it. When I decided to buy a DOL shirt, I saw it as supporting myself by reminding me of my own potential, supporting others by reminding them of theirs, and supporting DOL and my friend CG by giving her the resources she needs to make her own dream a reality.
Canadian-Fashion.ca started the “Me and My Patron” feature to celebrate Canadian Fashion patrons. Please read more about this feature here.
By Melissa Schilz
Upon arriving in Montreal Wednesday morning, I felt a sudden rush of excitement. This would be a whole new world in comparison to my experiences at Ottawa Fashion Week. I was a lamb making my way into a wolf’s territory. The images and memories of OFW came trickling back into my mind but were soon replaced with something more.
The architecture and the cobblestone streets make all the difference. We made our way down Rue Saint Pierre searching for Centre PHI, where Travis Taddeo’s newest collection for Spring/Summer 2013 would make it’s debut. The building is concrete and glass, with stainless steel fixtures and a modern vibe, though it sits between streets that may have remained the same for well over 100 years.
We sat in the lobby downstairs fervently, the seats filling up rather quickly with people holding cameras and wearing mostly black ensembles. Everyone rushes to the elevator when the three girls holding clipboards finally say it’s ready. We’re excited to see what Travis Taddeo has in store for us; after all, he is the first Canadian designer to partner with Aldo Rise.
We are greeted with champagne in a large and bright room with tall, fantastic windows, but before anyone accepts a glass, the cameras come out in full force and we soak in the array of shoes, all set upon grey tables like decadent desserts. What makes this collection interesting is the fact that he was able to create and design an image in his mind with the help of Aldo Rise. In doing so, Taddeo’s menswear line can include shoes that complete the look he had in mind.
- Travis Taddeo for Aldo Rise
The colours are simple shades of black and white, a running theme across his entire collection. Despite this, I still found the designs to be interesting and even something I would consider purchasing for a male friend. I especially enjoyed a leather pair of lace-ups with a thin rubber sole, they caught my eye as soon as I walked in the door.
A popular design worn by a few of Travis Taddeo’s team were a combination of Velcro and leather with an almost sandal-like appearance – definitely a summer shoe for men that looked comfortable and airy. However, it would take me some time to accept the rather odd design.
- Travis Taddeo for Aldo Rise
After spending some time contemplating over the shoes, it was time to take our seats. What came down the runway minutes later was sometimes average, but also made sure to pique our interest. An overarching fabric theme of jersey, leather, and linen was presented to the small audience, and just as we saw with the shoes, a palette of neutral shades were used. Bright whites, jet blacks, and shades of grey were prominent, however a pop of blue also made a welcomed appearance. One trend that will be continuing into 2013 is the men’s tank – Taddeo presented several different variations, which all had some sex appeal and simplicity.
What truly made the collection interesting was the use of leather accessories, including chokers and strappy chest pieces, but the line still felt casual enough for every day wear. Well, maybe not the leather underwear – but I would be lying if I said that didn’t catch anyone’s attention. There was a slight air of kink, I think we all felt it, but also enjoyed it. There were no restrictions here.
- Travis Taddeo
Taddeo clearly has extensive experience in design, and I was impressed by the cut of the fabric as well as the quality. Some of the lighter pieces flowed beautifully down the runway, but it was good to see more structured designs, such as leather shorts and vests. For his first complete menswear collection, Taddeo scored some serious points in the Montreal fashion scene.
When we finally arrived at Arsenal, where the rest of the evening would be spent ogling the latest spring trends on the runway, I couldn’t help but notice the ultra hip feel that was surrounding eager yet cool patrons. What caught my gaze immediately was the chandelier constructed of mannequins glowing red and floating above the VIP area. High industrial ceilings and oddly shaped furniture alongside portraits adorned on walls encircle us as we sit patiently waiting for the evening to get started. There was no shortage of rather loud dance music playing to get the audience pumped up before making our way to the show.
Betina Lou kicked off the night on the upper floor on a small runway with limited seating. The lighting was low and music with a classical vibe began to pour from the speakers as models made their appearance very slowly. The collection had a bouncy schoolgirl feel with a twist of sailor, which was quickly eaten up by those watching. The clothes seemed to glide down the runway easily, and the historic inspirations and timeless looks definitely popped.
- Betina Lou
Launched in 2009, Betina Lou (by Marie-Eve Emond) is one of the younger designers on display this evening, but she certainly made a splash with her lightweight knits and classic cuts with a modern edge. Everything was wearable and practical without being too simple or boring. The neutral colours and feminine, delicate details kept our interest, and a certain sex appeal emanated from the clothes but innocence still prevailed. I especially enjoyed a blue and white checkered dress with a big blue bow and a navy cardigan – a Lolita like ensemble that was a running theme for Betina Lou. It certainly turned a few heads and got Marie-Eve Emond the attention she deserves.
Iris Setlakwe opened in the main room with upbeat electronic music alongside elegant and refined pieces that held a more mature look for the workplace or an evening on the town. Many of the pieces contained a neutral palette, but the designer also managed to squeeze in bursts of bright orange, pink, red and blue. Although I felt some of the fabrics were not the best quality, as some seemingly had splotches almost invisible from the sidelines, overall there was a glamorous and stylish charm to the designs. Sheer fabrics and silk were a popular choice for many of the pieces, a perfect selection for spring and summer wear.
- Iris Setlakwe
I found the choice in models very refreshing as well. Instead of the usual stick thin girls, the models were your average girls next door, enthusiastic and full of energy, making the clothes all the more appealing to the buyers. Two words come to mind when I think or Iris Setlakwe: fun and fresh.
Although not particularly enthralling or memorable in comparison to others designers of the day, I have to give Iris Setlakwe some credit. The cuts were meticulous and the designs were flattering, despite my dislike of some of the pieces, including a white, rumpled tank with bejeweled shoulders. Depending on what you’re looking for, this collection could very well improve your summer wardrobe.
- Iris Setlakwe
Next up in the limelight was DUY, who brought a little more edge to the evening. Originally from Vietnam and raised in Montreal, Duy Nguyen is known for his sharp tailoring and innovative craftsmanship. Spectators were not disappointed, and being a huge fan of denim, I found myself swooning over some of his designs, in particular, a long denim jacket that flowed gracefully down the runway paired with a simple white jersey dress.
The collection is hip and unique with a wide range of colour, from deep reds to mint greens, and even flashy golds. DUY stayed away from patterns, opting for solid colours and creative details, which gets a thumbs up from me. Patterns can be tiring, and using splashes of colour in just the right way makes all the difference. DUY managed to do just that, giving us a funky yet feminine line with impressive construction and a cool, collected vibe.
When it was time for the last show, the audience was abuzz. We were about to witness something a little more experimental and mysterious. UNTTLD is a collective project made up of José Manuel St-Jacques and Simon Bélanger – both who have clearly been inspired by all kinds of art forms including music and literature. One thing is for sure; they certainly know how to put on a show.
It started with a short film that played on the huge screen at the top of the runway. The spectators was enthralled by the images, full of colour and passion, but also a little on the dark side. The eerie feeling was enhanced with old Japanese music, a foggy runway, and strange crashing noises emanating from the speakers.
The models emerged in all black pieces, adding to the almost funeral-esque atmosphere. There was definitely some Japanese inspiration here, and even though the show was compelling, not all of the clothes were. Some of the dresses seemed shapeless and poorly cut, and a few awkwardly placed zippers didn’t seem to be sewn in just right. Despite a few setbacks, there were some pieces I enjoyed, including a deep green pair of pants paired with a silk halter-top.
Even just a single day at Montreal Fashion Week can bring joy to any lover of Canadian fashion. Yes, there were a few misses, but overall, Montreal designers bring us great ideas of what to expect this coming spring and summer. Sheer fabrics and solid colours are a popular trend that we will be seeing more of in this upcoming season, and I am already longing for the warmer weather to return. I sign off with one final impression I brought home to Ottawa with me – less is more. One day at MFW brought more inspiration to my wardrobe than several days at OFW. I have high expectations for Ottawa after sinking my teeth into a few new designers, and hope to see more designers like these in the future.
Ottawa may not be considered the most fashionable city but we certainly pulled up our socks this past weekend at Ottawa Fashion Week. Of course, there were some disasters both on and off the runway, but what made these nights unforgettable was certainly the designs that made us swoon, or even made us tilt our heads in confusion.
Elena’s Creations started the night off 45 minutes behind schedule, after staff spent an hour ushering in an eager crowd. The show began with some well-tailored pieces featuring a basic black, white and grey palette. Royal blues, lush reds, and jewel-toned purples made an appearance soon after, brightening up the Ottawa designer’s collection. The fitted pieces reflected the Ottawa scene and brought something new for businesswomen to add to their working wardrobe. Not a highlight of the night, this local left us unsatisfied.
- Elena’s Creations
Amanda Emmanuel really brought out some summery vibes with bold and bright prints. Despite the way the colours popped, nothing felt inspiring. The majority of the collection was over the top, and I was disappointed by the lack of fabric choices. Silk is splendid, but it was repetitive. Even though I wouldn’t invest in any of her pieces, the local designer’s background in art and technology certainly showed through in her 3D prints. If this is the look you’re after, then she’s your go-to gal.
- Amanda Emmanuel
Mingling with the crowd after the first break, I noticed a feeling of disappointment in my fellow fashion lovers. Even though Friday evening began with a whimper, it certainly went out with a bang.
!Nu.I brought us back into the zone with some geek-chic style. Big glasses and even bigger hair made the classic nerd look sexy. Every outfit caught my attention, and it was this moment when my interest in Ottawa Fashion Week returned. Onlookers breathed a sigh of relief, and the enthusiasm was back! Deep teals, heavy knits and lots of leather made this collection really stand out. These are the kinds of pieces Ottawa needs to bring out our edgier side, I know it’s there somewhere! It’s just a shame that the local talent didn’t do it; it was this Montreal designer who did.
As for the Friday night finale, Y!D.N.A really made a splash in our conservative capital, with an unforgettable and avant-garde performance. Some of the models were painted in blackface or wore studded and spiked masks, stirring some controversy in the crowd. Although not fit for your every-day wardrobe, it was definitely powerful and innovative. The shredded tights and neutral palette were an undeniable turn on. As Andy, the Montreal based designer, took a bow, we turned off our cameras, and carefully picked our jaws up from the floor.
It was clear tonight the Montreal crew had stolen the show.
The atmosphere was upbeat as Tribal Sportswear kicked off Saturday with bold hues paired with soft browns and gorgeous, heavier fabrics. Simple sweaters paired with bright red pants caught my eye, and of course, fur, an Ottawa staple, made an appearance in this collection. Although I’m not a fan of the jackets that had a marshmallow-like appearance, the colours were fantastic. I have to say, sometimes the plain-jane look is nice, and Tribal Sportswear really hit the nail on the head.
- Tribal Sportswear
Things got very feminine when Ottawa’s own Jana Hanzel & Emilia Torabi’s new collection made its debut. The pieces had an old school burlesque feel with a modern twist. The cloche hats were a dazzling throwback to the flapper era, alongside some trendy prints on classic styles, and lace in the most risqué of places. Although nice to look at on the models, the designs were shapeless and strange. There was nothing I would want to add to my wish list. These garments are purely for show and don’t offer any practicality for the wearer.
- Jana Hanzel & Emilia Torabi
My favourites of the evening have to be ElizBourk and Rachel Sin, two locals who both garnered a lot of positive reaction. Both of these designers always manage to bring both something wearable and creative to the runway.
ElizBourk, who gets most of her inspiration from street style and fashion blogs, showed off some indie edge with soft patterns in light silvers and pinks. It felt springy yet icy, while also nicely mirroring the best-dressed locals you can find in the streets of downtown Ottawa. A fan favourite by the end of the evening, I only heard good things about the twenty-something designer, whose collection offered pieces with great shape and quality.
Rachel Sin followed up with sequins, fur and some animal print. For one of the most talked about designers at fashion week, she was certainly lacking something this year. At first glance, I was impressed, but looking back I realized I had been blinded by my love for Sin. The architecture student turned fashion designer usually has an eye for perfection, but some pieces looked boxy and ill fitting. Fabric was bunching in all the wrong places on a few of the dresses, and I was expecting better construction. But there was a grey dress I would recommend. It looked like it had gotten more care and attention than most of the other pieces, as it had great structure and neat hemlines.
- Rachel Sin
The end of the evening brought a large crew to Sidedoor for a celebratory after party thrown by Rachel Sin herself. After a night under bright runway lights, we sipped on poinsettia punch and discussed the best and the worst thus far.
I could feel fashion week winding down by this time. The photographers were tired and the street style was lacking any originality and inspiration. But I was still hopeful and excited for the finale.
We finally got to see a menswear collection from Loft 604, and even though the pieces weren’t extraordinary, it was great to have male models strutting the runway. Despite the lack of creativity, I did find myself eyeing the elbow patches, which I thought were a nice touch. The navy sweatpants, however, were not on my list of favourites. I wasn’t expecting to see anything that casual at fashion week, but if you are looking for some comfy sweaters, Loft 604 let us know where to find it.
- Loft 604
Ella Peru featured fancy hats and vampy looks. Both elegant and wearable, the styles were well put together and the colours complemented each other nicely. I was digging the knee-high socks, a look that can be both innocent and alluring at once. I enjoyed the dresses with more structure, but the way some of the cotton dresses bunched was unflattering, even on a tall, slim frame. I was most impressed with a coral dress paired with turquoise tights, a colour that kept popping up during Ottawa Fashion Week.
- Ella Peru
Helmer’s collection was something else. It started out with some simple solids and fancy patchwork, but by the end he had us scratching our heads. The show went from classic women’s wear to classic fairy tales. When the music suddenly stopped, we all grimaced, thinking the tech guy screwed up. But soon a tall figure appeared and the sounds of chiming glass took over the room. The model walked in complete silence except for the glass swaying upon her, clinking with each step. This was over seemingly quick, and bagpipes made an appearance before two final pieces were revealed, both bearing extreme frills. One of the final gowns had long pieces of straw dragging at the back, really giving a country wedding vibe, while the other was an odd-looking pantsuit. This was a confusing moment for all of us in the audience, especially after seeing so many other inspiring designers from Montreal.
It’s safe to say Sukhoo stole the show, even if the strange lighting did irk those of us trying to take photos. Each piece had a different feel, from ladylike and chic to dark and gothic. There was also some stunning detail – even if you didn’t care for the design, the quality is obviously there. I was whisked away by a black and white striped maxi dress, but the whole collection was emanating uniqueness and even style genius. We should be proud to say this is a product of Ottawa!
OFF THE RUNWAY AT OFW
Even though voted one of the worst dressed cities, I have to say, some of the best dressed in Ottawa made an appearance this weekend. From ages 18 to 50, and even the odd toddler, most had something interesting, if not strange, to wear. Although not all the spotted outfits were fashion week worthy, we still managed to make a point: we can be conservative AND cool. Fashion in Ottawa may be hidden, but uncovering some real gems is half the fun. Individual style blossoms in the capital, and I noticed a lot of hip O-towners claim their own signature styles that sets them apart from the crowd.
However, I was amazed at how few dared to be different with their outfits. This was your chance to show you’ve got style, why not embrace it? What I did notice was some serious sex appeal. There were numerous pairs of strappy towering heels and even a sequined bustier that was baring all sorts of cleavage. I would have loved to see more leather and lace, two big trends spotted on the runway that are well worth your investment this season and next.
I know I’m sending harsh criticism towards the Ottawa crowd, but I still have to admit that for the most part, you did well. I’m happy to say only a few were committing a severe fashion faux pas (this includes an ostrich-like jacket in an awful shade of pink).
As for the men, I was head over heels! Well-fitted jackets and classy hats took the usually boring suit to the next level. Fashion guru Sid Cratzbarg was spotted in an almost metallic-looking suit paired with hot white frames on Sunday evening.
- Sid Cratzbarg
- A great hat!
Of course, most of the trendiest Ottawa folk only showed up on Saturday, leaving Friday and Sunday feeling a bit more watered down when it came to style.
There were a few items on the runway I was happy to see on my fellow OFW-goers! Fur was a hit, but you really can’t expect anything less when you live in a city that spends half the year under a foot of snow.
James Jefferson of Blackbook Lifestyle is just one trendsetter who was spotted wearing a decadent fur pelt over his shoulders.
- James Jefferson
As for prints, dare I say it, but I barely saw any that were inspiring. It seems as though Ottawa is a city of solids, often opting for darker toned colour palettes to match our at times dreary weather and boring government jobs.
I wasn’t surprised at the endless sea of black outfits, and in fact I almost grew tired of them until I saw some done just right. A pure black outfit paired with a light pink blazer was definitely one example of this.
One thing is for sure; the ho-hum outfits in the lobby were no match for the eclectic styles on the runway. I often found myself in search of a stylish individual to pose for my camera, but wound up staring hopelessly into a (literally) black abyss. Luckily, a few of those in the younger crowd were willing to step outside of the comfort zone.
But don’t fret, there’s always the next fashion week to give it your all. Of course, we’ll be sent to yet another snazzy Ottawa location to check out, which will be a relief for some who hated the scenery this time around.
By the end of this weekend, all those in attendance at OFW may still be a bit lost on what to wear and what not to wear. Overarching themes on the OFW runway included animal prints, fur, sheer fabrics, sequins, lace, bold patterns and bright tones, as well as leather. Quite the eclectic mess, you say? I do have to agree, but it was great to see such a range of styles among designers. However, the shows never seemed to flow into one another. We seemed to have a little too much at once, and it was as though some of the designers couldn’t decide what exactly they were aiming for.
Ottawa Fashion Week brought a lot to the table in terms of confusion. Not only were the designs all over the map, but musical notes changed drastically, ranging from soft melodic beats to heavy bass and dubstep, even more reason for the puzzlement. Most in attendance still seemed to enjoy themselves despite the jarring transitions and oddly placed pieces. This may have been hard to avoid with so many designers jam-packed into a three-day event.
So what should they do? Cut designers, or add days? The latter option may not be feasible, so they need to pick the best of the best, giving Ottawa designers top priority. Helmer is certainly one who could have been eliminated, as well as Symbiose, who had unfinished hems and even visible stains! Some collections were also far too large, as Turbine showcased over 40 looks.
Ottawa Fashion Week needs put organization on their list of things to improve. We saw designers that varied greatly in tone and inspiration right next to each other. Y!D.N.A and !N.u.I’s edgy and at times weird styles didn’t coincide well with Amanda Emmanuel’s girly prints. The organizers should have put this into consideration when making the line ups.
My final criticism is Ottawa designers need to try harder when attempting to impress a crowd full of people who are not wearing Ottawa designs. The Montreal crew was outshining our local crop, and we can’t let this happen at our week. If designers want to inspire people in the capital to head downtown and check out their work, they need to make it more appealing. This shouldn’t be hard to do; after all, Ottawa is full of buy local advocates.
By Melissa Schilz
I finally made it to The Room at the Bay.
After only two weeks into my challenge and only one full week of work, I became disinterested in what I have currently have available in my Canadian-only work wardrobe which largely consisted of the following:
1. Ports suit 1
2. Ports suit 2
3. Ports suit 3
4. Pink Tartan dress 1
5. Ports blazer + blouse with Lucian Matis skirt
As such, Tudor and I decided to go to the Room to find some Canadiana work clothes.
A lot has already been written about how physically small the Room was and the limitations of its clothing lines but I was still a little unprepared for the experience. Whereas Holts was almost a lifestyle store marketing only to one income level situated in an ideal area, the Room felt like a a very small jolt of luxury in an otherwise bland store and landscape. Their Canadian choices also left much to be desired – on the day I went, the Room was only carrying Calla, Erdem, and Wayne Clark formal and cocktail wear inappropriate for work. I did mulled over a beautiful Erdem scarf for a bit but decided that I didn’t absolutely love it.
One positive note was that the clerks were very helpful and knowledgeable when you ask specifically to be shown Canadian-only products. Two years ago when was looking to buy a dress for a party, I asked the same of a Holts clerk and she actually asked me “why” as if the idea of buying Canadian was ridiculous, so points to the Bay for hiring enjoyable and considerate staff.
Overall, I did enjoy the experience and will probably go back there again. I did ask the clerks to email me the next time they have an intake of Canadian designers so I will report here if they follow through.
I spent New Years with Siya and Chris and their friends and at some point in the night Siya passed a book around for everybody to put down their 2011 resolutions.
I have been generally successful in completing resolutions: I managed to purchase a home in 2009 and met my financial goals of 2010 but this year I decided to try something more challenging and a little more idealistic: I wanted to wear only Canadian designed or manufactured clothing for an entire year.
I have many reasons to want to do this but the most pressing reason was that I was deeply curious to see if it would change my life in any way: would I have my most stylish year ever, or would it be so difficult and costly that I give up before spring? Would this patriotism spread into the way I buy my food and other regular consumer purchases or would it cause me to become a detractor of Canadian culture to my friends and family after spending years of being a proponent? Or perhaps it would not change my life at all and I would simply arrive at the end of the year with an anti-climatic closet of newish Canadian clothes.
Right now it seems popular to spend a year not buying a certain type of consumer goods or goods from a particular origin or not buying anything at all then writing a book about it but I haven’t seen any books about choosing to make a positive endorsement when you buy the things that you eventually have to buy. Making earnest choices is harder than not making choices at all.
At this point I haven’t decided to do a style blog and post my clothes everyday. I work at a conservative 9 to 5 so it would probably start to bore people when they see the same Pink Tartan dress the fifth time. I also have to admit that I am not very creative in styling myself and don’t want to pretend otherwise.
Please follow me this year as I try to make positive choices which will hopefully have positive outcomes.