There are few male-focused fashion events around the world — seven to be exact — but finally Toronto is joining the likes of London, Paris and Milan by debuting its first men’s fashion week. Because dudes love their duds as much as us gals, and finally designers are beginning to acknowledge that they’re spending just as much.
Maybe you’ve spotted the slick marketing campaign, posing the question, “Who is TOM*?” that has been trumpeting the Toronto event, which is adopting the acronym TOM* to launch the Spring 2015 collections. It will run from August 12 to August 15 at the Fairmont Royal York, but as for the designers? Here are just a few of the talented luminaries to watch throughout the week.
Sons of Odin
Toronto-based designers Zakariah Milana and Charlene Martin recently launched their contemporary men’s label, Sons of Odin, which was carried at Holt Renfrew stores across Canada for Spring 2014. For TOM*, they’re hoping to revive the individuality and creativity absent in the modern man’s wardrobe, melding together wearability and edginess with their uniquely quilted jacket and pants.
A fixture on the women’s circuit, Toronto-based Christopher Bates is all about tasteful colour palettes and contemporary tailoring with a unique blend of European influences. During World MasterCard Spring/Summer 2014 Fashion Week, he showed off an almost James Bond collection of crisp white blazers and bow ties, but is expected to exhibit more smart-casual transition wear next week.
HD stands for Hussein Dhalla, a self-taught designer, born and raised in Toronto. He specializes in custom and ready-to-wear eveningwear for the discerning playboy who lives the fast life. Silk shirts, velvet smoking jackets, speckled bow ties and even Hugh Hefner-style house coats are never out of place in his collections.
Pedram Karimi is a new fashion designer from Montreal, who made waves during Montreal Fashion Week. “Karimi set the bar high with an androgynous collection (which we’ve come to expect from the designer) in creamy hues and futuristic silhouettes,” Urban Expressions wrote at the time. Now he’s skipping down to T.O., where his arsenal of avant-garde designs (prepare for layers of waffle fabric) will no doubt woo the Ontario crowd.