Get to know Montreal hat maker Camille Cote

Get to know Montreal hat maker Camille Cote

Canadian fashion shopping event INLAND

Camille Côté designed her first collection while graduating from high school. At the age of sixteen, she left her hometown of Rimouski. Driven by her dream, she devotes herself to fashion design in Quebec City and develops her skills in the ready-to-wear industry in Montreal. 

Camille's goal is to create elegant and suitable designs for the everyday women of all ages and nationalities. Off the beaten path, she abolishes all standards and seeks inspiration in the heart of the popular districts, promoting her vision of free femininity. 
 

Canadian fashion INLAND
Shop Canadian fashion at INLAND
Canadian-made hats by Camille-Cote
Canadian fashion at INLAND

Why do you choose to make / manufacture in Canada?
We have all the necessary resources and space for growing and shining on the international scene. 

What are / were your greatest challenges in getting started as a designer and entrepreneur?
Balancing design and business.

What designer, artist or performer would you like to collaborate with?
Yohji Yamamoto

How do you measure success?
When you transcend established codes with deep values in order to leave a positive message in the community. Reaching people in their hearts and fight for convictions. 

Describe yourself in 3 words.
Free, sensible and strong

What makes you feel most liberated?
Promoting a message empowering woman's affirmation trough fashion.

Where do you shop for clothes and jewelry? 
Evelyne Boutique in Montreal have a great selection of talented Canadian designers.

What 5 things could you not live without in life?
My boyfriend, my cat, my uniform, my coffee(s) and chips.

Cat or dog person?
Mostly dogs but I am in-love with my cat.

What music are you listening to these days?
Classical in morning, pop in afternoon, hip hop or jazz in evening. Also Peter Peter’s new album on repeat.

Last book you read (and liked)? 
L’étranger – Albert Camus

Favorite restaurant or coffee shop?
5000 ans – a Korean restaurant in Montreal “Quartier Latin”

Where do you get your news? 
La Presse+  Le Devoir, New-York times, Radio-Canada radio/CBC radio.

What are you watching on Netflix?
The Office

If you weren't designing, what would you be doing?
Probably in a depression…

What is something about yourself that would surprise people?
I began to draw clothes at age 3 my mother says. Then sewing clothes to sell them on street at age eight. Funny but, I was also making my kind of “collection plan” on the computer. 

Meet Camille and shop her namesake collection at INLAND on May 5/6. Friday 3pm - 11pm and Saturday 11am - 7pm. See complete designer line-up here

10 Canadian Lingerie Brands to steam up your Valentine's

10 Canadian Lingerie Brands to steam up your Valentine's

MARY YOUNG

MARY YOUNG

Canadian Lingerie_Mary Young

MARY YOUNG provides feminine and relaxed undergarments and loungewear that not only embody the modern woman’s lifestyle, but also empower females to embrace their individuality and to refuse contortion into industry definitions of sexy. @itsmaryyoung

Kayleigh Peddie

Kayleigh Peddie

Kayleigh Peddie is a lingerie and swimwear label based in Montreal, Canada. All garments are handmade by the designer who devotes herself to each piece, from fabric selection to finishing details. @kayleighpeddie

With Love Lingerie

With Love Lingerie

The With Love Lingerie collections appeal to an urban woman whose love of timeless style and fashion extends beyond her outerwear and into her underpinnings. With Love is proud to be part of the Canadian fashion community and chooses to keep production in Canada. @carrie_withlove

House of Etiquette

House of Etiquette

House of Etiquette designs Latex clothing for the bold and brave. Founded by two designers: A. Davies and M. Smart, all items are handmade to order in Toronto Canada using quality Latex and findings throughout. @etiquettelatex

Irina Shad

Irina Shad

Irina Shad is a Toronto based fashion designer, originally from Russia. Her aesthetic is edgy and embracing of confident sexuality. Lingerie-inspired garments meant to be worn as ready to wear; modern lingerie design is too cool to only keep in between the sheets. @irinashad

Fortnight

Fortnight

Each Fortnight piece is carefully crafted in Parkdale studio in Toronto by a team of skilled craftswomen who are seriously passionate about the art of lingerie making. Designed to not only enhance our curves, but our clothes as well, each piece is free from unnecessary embellishment. "Our hope is to help women feel most like their true selves; comfortable, confident and beautiful". @fortnightlabel  

CHARLIE PAILLE

CHARLIE PAILLE

CHARLIE PAILLE is a lingerie line designed and personally handmade in Canada, using high quality materials to make you feel both comfortable and sexy. The designer of this namesake brand was born and raised in Canada. She studied Fashion in Montreal and later moved to New York City as a professional model, where she was given the opportunity to travel the world and work with some of the very best, and inspiring designers. @charliepaille

Canadian Lingerie_Sokoloff

Canadian Lingerie_Sokoloff

Canadian Lingerie_Sokoloff

Sokoloff lingerie designs and manufactures fine lingerie 100% made in Canada.  Created by designer Sofia Sokoloff, the label breathes delicacy, confidence and comfort, while driving an ethical production model. @sokolofflingerie

Jordan de Ruiter

Jordan de Ruiter

Jordan de Ruiter designs vintage inspired, whimsical pieces that cater to fun, feminine women who are inspired to play dress up in their everyday lives. Her work is often colorful and ranging from casual to cocktail-party-ready. Staring as a line of dresses, Jordan has expanded her collection to include the "Lover" series. The brand is made in Canada. @jordanderuiter

Ellesmere Lingerie

Ellesmere Lingerie

Ellesmere Lingerie is designed and sewn in Montreal, Canada. Julia, the designer, learned to sew in childhood and has been fitting patterns ever since. The Northern Lights of her Yukon winter youth, combined with an education in sculpture, have brought her to focus on the natural forms of the body, creating inspired pieces for the contemporary woman. @ellesmerelabel

TMR Collection

TMR Collection

TMR Collection_INLANDspring2016

TMR Collection, founded and designed by Tara Rivas, is a Toronto based fashion label specializing in contemporary womenswear. Tara’s distinctive sense of style combines the clean lines of Scandinavia with a hint of Latin American verve, which is reflected throughout the line. 

Proudly supporting the Canadian apparel industry, TMR features locally sourced fabrics and quality manufacturing. A natural addition to the INLAND line-up, we had a chance to speak with Tara about her thoughts on being a designer in the Canada. 

Who are some key people that inspire/ motivate you?
My mentor, family members and customers are my key motivators. I am fortunate enough to be surrounded by such inspirational people who have always encouraged me to follow my dreams and take chances. Starting your own business, sharing your art and personal style are all about taking risks and that excites me.

What advice would you give emerging talent?
Given the saturated market and highly competitive nature of the fashion industry, it is important to create a product that has a distinctive flair in order to stand out. My advice to emerging talent is to pay attention to the small details, learn from any mistakes, stay on track with the seasonal design schedule, don’t shy away from constructive criticism and give it your all and persevere!

"AS A PROUD CANADIAN, I LOVE BEING ABLE TO SUPPORT THE LOCAL ECONOMY BY MANUFACTURING OUR COLLECTION IN TORONTO"  

TMR Collection_INLANDspring2016
TMR Collection_INLANDspring2016
TMR Collection_INLANDspring2016

If you weren’t designing, what would you be doing?
I would probably be planning another creative venture of some sort.

Do you have a favourite Canadian designer or artist?
Although there are so many talented Canadian designers and artists, I have been drawn to Smythe’s tailoring, high quality and clean lines. As for emerging talent, I am intrigued by Matthew Gallagher’s alluring and unique designs.

What do you think there should be more of in the Canadian fashion industry? 
There was a recent petition circulating around to help obtain government funding for designers in Canada. I strongly believe there should be more financial support for designers. Excluding Quebec, fashion throughout Canada is not recognized as a “cultural industry”, meaning that designers are not eligible to receive the grants that are currently given to other arts and culture sectors. With appropriate funding, this would give more opportunities for designers to progress in the industry.

What about yourself, do you think would surprise people?
When I want to unwind, I find it very relaxing and therapeutic to play the piano by ear and compose my own songs.

When you’re not working, what are you doing?
I enjoy exploring new hot spots in Toronto, hosting dinner parties and exercising when I can. I do try to find a balance in the midst of this fast paced industry so I can regenerate my thoughts.

Why does Made in Canada matter?
Nowadays, people are becoming increasingly aware of ethical and sustainable practices, making locally made products attractive to consumers. As a proud Canadian, I love being able to support the local economy by manufacturing our collection in Toronto. This also allows me to be hands-on and oversee everything from start to finish during production.

Shop Tara online

NEXT GENERATION PERSPECTIVES

NEXT GENERATION PERSPECTIVES

The future of Canadian fashion has enormous potential and opportunity for both growth and expansion.  We wanted to get the next generation's perspective about why made in Canada matters, so we asked three first year Fashion Business and Management Students from Centennial College to share their opinions and highlight their favorite designers from #INLANDspring2016. Here's what they had to say. 
 

Canadian designers have been under appreciated for too long now. The way they are producing sustainable clothing, contributing to our economy and giving back to our society. The real sting is that many designers work so hard just to find out that they need to travel elsewhere, make a name and then come back to Canada with their outside success. This is something that needs a change and events like INLAND are hopefully starting this ripple effect.

My personal favourites from INLAND (Spring2016) are Amanda Maria, elan+castor and With Love Lingerie. They all have different vibes but are all very womanly and sexy.  I wear monochromatic colours the majority of the time, so I would definitely wear Amanda Maria's line. It’s a trendy collection but I feel like I would gain a confidence wearing some pieces from both FW15 and FW16. With that, I would add something from the With Love Lingerie collection underneath to really get that mystery feel. Their line of the black sets with the red roses is chic and romantic. And I’m all about those vibes. 

I love the feminine feeling and elan+castor would give me just that. They focus on giving women a balance of strength and softness, not to mention that they hand knit some of the garments, so it's pretty cool to get that personal detail. But their pants are something that really caught my attention. I would definitely strut. Scratch that…ALL of these three designers’ collections are something I would strut. Or attempt to anyway.

By Crystal Pesantez - Fashion Business and Management Student,  Centennial College
@cmpesantez 

Amanda Maria

Amanda Maria

As Canadians, we are often blind sided with the glitz and glam of mainstream international designers however, we don’t always acknowledge the talent we have in our own backyard. Canada is full of many talented designers and as Canadians it is our job to give them credit where credit is due. Made in Canada matters because it is yet another was to show our pride. Wearing apparel that is Canadian-made shows our support not only for the designer, but the nation on a whole. The next time you go shopping, challenge yourself to buying a piece from a Canadian designer. Do your research! There are tons of fashion-forward designers to choose from. Let’s commit ourselves to falling in love with Canadian-made clothing, it is so important to value our designers as much as they value our amazing country.

By Shanice Hylton -  Fashion Business and Management Student,  Centennial College
 

Canadian designers need more credit in the industry because they truly are brilliant. It is important we emphasize them and learn about them because they are domestic. Made in Canada is so important now with everything being made overseas. We need to contribute to our own country’s success. Three of my favourite Canadian designers from INLAND (Spring2016) are Paria Shirvani, Som Kom, and , for different reasons. I am naturally drawn to dark colours, simple and basic yet chic pieces. I absolutely love Paria Shirvani’s style. The shapes of her garments are perfect. I love the structured look to the zipper vests and skirts - perfect pieces for the workplace or to arrive at an interview in style. It is no doubt that if I like Shirvani, that I will also love Som Kom. He uses stunning cutouts and ties that adds a very interesting appeal to the garments. I could see myself arriving to fashion week looking on point in his strappy black jumper. The Saltwater Collective pieces are basic, but I love the simplicity of them. Perfect pieces for lounging or going out for coffee still looking put together and feeling comfortable. All you have to do is throw on their graphic crew-neck sweater and baseball cap, pair it with your favourite jeans and you are set. Can you tell I love neutral colours and basics yet? All around we need to put more focus on Canadian designers because they truly are amazing.
 
By Emily O'Shea - Fashion Business and Management Student,  Centennial College
@emilyosheaa

SOM KONG | Booth at INLAND

SOM KONG | Booth at INLAND

Paria Shirvani

Paria Shirvani

paria shirvani


Special thanks to Leesa Butler, Fashion Professor at Centennial College & Creator/Writer for the
F-List    @theFList   @CentennialEDU for coordinating.   


LUCKY LADY!

LUCKY LADY!

INLAND SS16 $1000 Gift Pack Winner

Congratulations Jennifer! Enjoy Your $1000 Canadian Designer Gift Pack! 

Jennifer discovered INLAND for the first time this past May 6-8th and couldn't be happier with her experience. Living just a block away from the new INLAND location at 134 Peter Street, Jennifer stumbled upon the show one afternoon and loved it so much that she brought her mother back the next day. She bought a leather jacket from BanoeeMee and became deeply inspired by everyone at the show. Like all spenders at INLAND, she entered the draw to win the $1000 Canadian Designer Gift Pack...and then did!

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INLAND Spring 2016 $1000 Gift Pack
INLAND Spring 2016 $1000 Gift Pack
INLAND Spring 2016 $1000 Gift Pack
INLAND Spring 2016 $1000 Gift Pack
INLAND Spring 2016 $1000 Gift Pack
INLAND Spring 2016 $1000 Gift Pack

CAPTVE | MERGING JEWELRY WITH SCULPTURE

CAPTVE | MERGING JEWELRY WITH SCULPTURE

Captve_INLANDspring2016

Founded in her intense passion for carving, Jade Boutilier, designer and maker behind the brand Captve, drew from Michelangelo's "Captive" series as the source of inspiration for her unique, wax-carved collection. With only one year underway as a fully launched line, Jade is already making a strong statement with her work, her unique process and her overall brand story.  Here's the scoops directly from Jade.  

Captve_INLANDspring2016
Captve_INLANDspring2016
Captve_INLANDspring2016
Captve_INLANDspring2016



Why did you decide to start your brand? 
For me, Captve is therapeutic. It’s a platform I use to reveal a side of myself I otherwise wouldn’t be able to explore. I guess this is why the anonymity behind a brand name has always seemed vital. 

What were you doing before designing? 
I worked in fast fashion. Having worked within the industry, I’ve become more aware of my morals which, in turn, align with Captve’s. 

What are/were your greatest challenges in getting started as a designer and entrepreneur? 
Though the brand is only a year and a half old, it took over four years to build. I’m a cautious person and the thought of jumping into a brand without having a proper understanding of its origin held me back for quite some time. In some ways I’m grateful for this because it gives Captve a very solid base, but I’ve had to learn that I can’t perfect everything and that time, in fashion, it is usually of the essence.  

Do you work with a team or on your own? 
I am the founder and designer of Captve, but I’m incredibly lucky to have a partner that has put
as much time as I have into the brand. 

Captv_INLANDspring2016
Captv Studio_INLANDspring2016

How do you measure success? 
For me success is measured in the little tasks I complete each day.  

What’s the best advice you've received in life and/or business?   
Every step is a step forward.   

Who are some key people that inspire / motivate you?  
I am fortunate to share a studio alongside fourteen talented and successful designers. Being   surrounded by these individuals, some who already know the ups and downs of the industry and some who are as new to it as myself, keeps me motivated.  

Captv Studio

What advice would give emerging talent? 
Never cater to anyone but yourself. 

When you’re not working, what are you doing? 
Right now I am taking French classes, so my mornings are dedicated to that. In the afternoons, if  I’m not in my studio, I’m working on other side projects that will hopefully one day influence the direction of Captve

Why does Made in Canada matter?  
Supporting local design is important. It helps strengthen our economy and gives a voice to our  nation.  

Meet Jade in person and shop her incredible collection at INLAND this May 6-8, 2016 at 134 Peter Street in the atrium of the new QRC West tower at Queen & Peter. 


ZVELLE | SHOES FOR WOMEN ON THE GO

ZVELLE | SHOES FOR WOMEN ON THE GO

Zvelle_INLANDspring2016

Simply put, Elle AyoubZadeh, designer and Creative Director of emerging Canadian luxury brand Zvelle, says "I’ve always had a passion for shoes!" when asked why she started her label. "I saw a void in the market for luxury shoes that catered to the multifaceted global woman. As someone who has worked and lived all over the world, I felt I had a unique point of view. So I decided to do something about it. After developing the business for a year Zvelle was born!"

Before launching Zvelle, Elle co-founded a luxury concept store that featured emerging designers from New York and around the world.  She was responsible for all the creative aspects of the business. When she began the journey of starting her own business however, challenges inevitably sprung up. "One of the greatest challenges for me has been recognizing and following my own voice. There are always lots of opinions about what you should and shouldn’t do. As a designer and founder, it’s wise to have good counsel, but in the end it’s important to have conviction in your product and what it stands for. This takes time to develop and you need to go inside yourself to bring this out. The other challenge is of course building word of mouth. You need it to establish and grow a brand." 

Zvelle_INLANDspring2016
Zvelle_INLANDspring2016
Zvelle_INLANDspring2016

 

"I measure success by looking at each customer interaction. We can’t reach our big goals if we don’t add value and deliver with each interaction." 

Zvelle_INLANDspring2016

Elle works with a small team of people in Toronto, New York and Brazil on different aspects of her brand and business. As a young company, Elle notes that Zvelle has a lot of opportunities ahead. Success for her means being deliberate about the opportunities the team chooses to pursue. "I measure success by looking at each customer interaction. We can’t reach our big goals if we don’t add value and deliver with each interaction. This keeps us honest. I’m an entrepreneur at heart and I love the relationship a brand has with its customer."

Elle advises new businesses and other designers to "run you own race. Focus on your own lane. If you’re looking at the lane beside you, you’ve got the wrong focus. This applies to both life and business, which for me is one in the same." 

Zvelle_INLANDspring2016

Focused, confident and sophisticated, Elle is also humble in how she credits those around her for her strength and success. "I’m so fortunate to be surrounded by many smart women and men who inspire and challenge me, depending on what I need at that time! My life partner Raymond Luk is an entrepreneur who runs a high growth financial-technology company. We’re both striving to build brands that will make a difference. Living with him keeps my competitive juices flowing! I also have an amazing advisory board of women who are doing great things in different industries and their successes are hugely motivating as well."

Zvelle_INLANDspring2016

When asked what advice she would give emerging talent. Elle says to "Work hard. Get up every morning and keep at it. It was the turtle not the rabbit that won the race. Pay attention to the fundamentals that grow your business and not just to all the ‘social noise’. Canadian designers have all that it takes to build great brands and the best support we can get is Canadians buying Canadian. This goes for all industries not just fashion. It’s a personal philosophy and one that I regularly put into practice. At the end of the day the only thing that helps a Canadian brand grow is sales and support from consumers. You can have all the talent in the world but if nobody buys from you, you don’t have a business. 

"Canadian designers have all that it takes to build great brands and the best support we can get is Canadians buying Canadian."

 

Unequivocally devoted to her business and brand,  if Elle isn't working, she's usually thinking and dreaming about work. "There’s no separation between my professional and personal life. I chose to become an entrepreneur and I’m lucky that I get to live out my passion everyday so I don’t have any hard rules about separating the two." When she does manage to turn off the work switch, she's spending time with her partner Raymond, her American Cocker Spaniel Chilby and her family. "Chilby is my baby and fills my life with joy. But he’s high maintenance. I groom him like a show dog, which means he gets groomed ALOT. I love adventures so I’m always planning one."

Zvelle_INLANDspring2016

In celebration of her first INLAND, we asked Elle to explain why "Made in Canada" matters? "It matters to the economy and affects every single person who lives here. Our shoes are handcrafted in a family owned factory in Brazil that specializes in luxury shoes but that’s only because we can’t do it in Canada. If we could, we would. The rest of our business is conducted in Canada. It’s also important for us to give back to Canadian organizations that are making a difference and we’re really proud of our partnership with Women’s College Hospital. It was the first hospital in Canada that allowed women to be trained in medicine and to become physicians. Through 2016 we’re donating $10 from the sale of each pair of shoes to the Women’s College Hospital Foundation

An entrepreneur to be inspired by and a brand to watch out for, Elle AyoubZadeh's luxury shoe collection Zvelle will be available at INLAND this May 6-8, 2016 at 134 Peter Street in the atrium of the new QRC West tower at Queen & Peter.   


BAZZUL & THE REVERSIBLE DRESS

BAZZUL & THE REVERSIBLE DRESS

INLANDspring2016_BAZZUL

"Forward, functional and feminine" is how the Toronto-based label BAZZUL describes itself. Nothing could be more true of a Canadian fashion collection. The BAZZUL dress, made with high-quality, easy-to-launder reversible jersey,  is flattering to any body type and will keep you feeling incredible from day to night. Felicia Burke, Designer and Creative Director, is focused on achieving balance between her need to design and the ever-changing industry of fashion. Here's a peek into her designer mind and process. 

Why did you decide to start your brand?
To express my need for design and making women feel beautiful.

What are/were your greatest challenges in getting started as a designer and entrepreneur? Starting alone with a tiny budget and problem solving around those difficulties.

INLANDspring2016_BAZZUL

Do you work with a team or on your own?
I work alone for the most part with the aid of some fantastic interns.

"Hustle hard, then hustle harder and go to the place you need to go when things seem impossible." 

How do you measure success?
The happiness within myself and my beautiful family and friends.

What’s the best advice you've received in life and/or business?
To be in the present moment as much as possible, to not give up on your goals and knowing when to ask for help.

Who are some key people that inspire / motivate you?
My parents in the way that they’ve raised their kids, and for their incredible work ethic.

INLANDspring2016_BAZZUL
INLANDspring2016_BAZZUL

What advice would give emerging talent?
Hustle hard, then hustle harder and go to the place you need to go when things seem impossible. For me that is the swimming pool.

If you weren't designing, what would you be doing?
A ghostwriter for Comedians and I would still be designing.

Do you have a favorite Canadian designer or artist?
David Altmejd

What do you think there should be more of in the Canadian fashion industry? 
More training, more financial support... and a fashion week that occurs a month sooner and accommodates buyers, so it’s not just about the shows but the sales as well as the guts of any clothing brand, the business.

What about yourself do you think would surprise people?
I can tap dance.

When you’re not working, what are you doing?
Thinking about designing, thinking up designs.

Why does Made in Canada matter?
More jobs across the board and more opportunity for the designer to have better quality made goods. When factories are being employed there is competition that becomes favourable to the designer in terms of cost and quality of production. 

Meet Felicia Burke and shop her collection BAZZUL at INLAND this May 6-8 at QRC West, 134 Peter Street, Toronto. (Queen & Peter). 

 


ANDREW COIMBRA

ANDREW COIMBRA

Andrew Coimbra is the cutest human, totally into hugs and kisses, but at the same time - a full on sassy diva who knows what he wants and exactly how to make it happen.

Andrew began his fashion journey at OCAD University where he studied Material Art & Design and then shifted to Fashion Studies at George Brown College. He worked with Canadian labels Pink Tartan and Phillip Sparks before starting his own casual unisex line, Andrew Coimbra. Since then, he has built an incredibly strong brand, shown at Toronto Men's Fashion Week (TOM) and is now ready to host his first Toronto pop-up...at INLAND this May 6-8th! 

Andrew Coimbra_INLANDspring2016
Andrew Coimbra_INLANDspring2016
Andrew Coimbra_INLANDspring2016

Why did you decide to start your business?
I decided to start my brand because I wanted to offer a view into Canadian menswear that wasn’t just… plaid shirts, chinos and dandy blazers. Not to say that there is anything wrong with that, but I think Canada has a lot of influential character that is washed over by our general obsession with meeting dated industry ideals. I wanted to give Canada a fresh look reflective of its current population.

What were you doing before designing?
intended on going into illustration or animation at one point, and studied Drawing & Painting at OCADU before switching into the Material Art & Design program, and ultimately moving onto Fashion Studies. While I was there, I dived more into fashion by working freelance as a Stylist; it was a great networking opportunity, and I learned a lot about my aesthetic during the process.

"I wanted to give Canada a fresh look reflective of its current population."

What are/were your greatest challenges in getting started as a designer and entrepreneur?
For me it boils down to two main things: resources and support. When I say resources I mean everything from financing and physical space to a selection of trims and fabrics that suit the needs to my brand and my demographic. 

Do you work with a team or on your own?
The brand and the way I handle it is almost entirely my own doing, but I have found incredible motivation, inspiration, and clarity in working with my friends throughout my processes, so in a way, it’s a team effort. 

How do you measure success?
If I am proud of what I am putting out there, then I am successful. 

What’s the best advice you've received in life and/or business?    
“Do you.” *praise hands emoji*

Who are some key people that inspire / motivate you?    
My “team”: I trust Toronto-based stylist Nadia Pizzimenti with giving me notes on collection direction; we often edit the collections together. My personal casting director is Lekan Tijani. I bounce creative concepts off of Mckenzie James, Patrick Lacsina, and Marina Guasch. I couldn’t accomplish what I do in the amount of time I have without them. 

What advice would give emerging talent?
Know. Your. Brand. 

If you weren’t designing, what would you be doing?
For a hot minute I thought about pursuing a career as an actor…

Do you have a favorite Canadian designer or artist?
Favourite Canadian designer hands down is Mikhael Kale. Even though he and I are friends, I’m such a fan-girl for him. He looks at design as an art, and still manages to make it beautifully wearable.

What do you think there should be more of in the Canadian fashion industry? 
There needs to be more financial support. That not only comes in the form of grants that are made accessible by publicly and privately funded programs, but by individual investment. It is so crucial for local designers to be supported by their community members. It’s such a special thing to see someone work hard to create products or services for you, and for you to acknowledge it by making the conscious decision to invest in a piece.

What about yourself do you think would surprise people?
Literally nothing. I’m an open book; if you’re surprised, then you’re not reading. 

When you’re not working, what are you doing?
Working. I feel terrible for my friends, because when I’m not talking about my potential new bae I’m picking their brains on the direction of my next collection, campaign, lookbook, Instagram post. They’re good people for putting up with me. 

Why does Made in Canada matter?
Here’s an anecdote: One of my stockists, elkel, has a physical pop-up shop in Soho, New York, and a friend of a friend who does not know me or my brand ended up buying a piece. I was told that the person working in the shop at the time told the customer that my brand was based out of Sweden, and that the collection is manufactured there – so, the person was excited and bought it. Afterward, the person was upset when my friend (who was excited that his friend purchased my design) told him that the brand is actually Canadian and manufactured in Toronto. This is why Made in Canada is important. The international impression that we are leaving is ultimately lackluster and does not reflect the value and potential craftsmanship we, as an industry, can perpetuate. There is talent here. 

Isn't he lovely!? Meet Andrew and shop his 'Canadian-made' collection Andrew Coimbra at INLAND this May 6-8 at QRC West, 134 Peter Street (Queen & Peter).