5 Canadian Designs for your 2017 wardrobe

We’ve almost survived the holiday season, boxing day is behind us, but the sales will continue to rage on and tempt us into stuff we don’t need or may not endure more than a few fashion seasons. Full disclosure, I am no saint and have fallen prey to the odd satin souvenir jacket from Zara, but I am getting better – better at buying less and choosing wisely.

In response to the neverending list of items we “must” add to our wardrobe, I’ve devised a list of a few pieces that will stand the test of time and you can feel good about investing it – because they will ALWAYS be cool, and they WILL last.

Numero uno on my list is the Horses Atelier long velvet dress. Design duo Claudia Dey and Heidi Sopinka’s ethos is “a timeless piece is both the past and the future”. Their fabric is all naturally sourced from family run mills with the production of the garments in their Toronto studio. I missed this dress the first time it came around and I was not going to let that happen again. I snapped up in green at *ahem* full price, it is worth every penny. Since purchased in mid-December I’ve worn it bars in NYC, to fancy celebration dinners, and I will wear it to some galas in the spring. This is a no-brainer that will stylishly stick around.

photo by Arden Wray

Next: I can’t even with this bag! Hoi Bo has long been the forerunner for handmade Canadian bags with an elegant and functional design. The owner and designer Sarah proudly showed me her leather worn hands at the One of a Kind show this past month so she has since been deified in my eyes. This is the Dumpling bag in brown leather and it’s just the sweetest little bag a girl could ask for.

For those ladies that work in an office (or not) and complain there is little choice in the eco-conscience office-wear-world may I present The Rosalyn Dress by Preloved. Julia Grieve is a friend and mentor who has been repurposing second-hand clothing for over 20 years now.  This dress can do it all, and I’m all about the navy/burgundy combo. Plus it’s on sale now, so come on!

We live in a coat country, it really is 80% of our outfit most of the time, so we best turn it up. Smythe’s Lab Coat in patch jacquard will take the blahs out of winter. If you are willing to wait you can always hang on for their famed sample sale and you might score a deal.

photo by Christopher Wahl

Last but never ever least my latest and great obsession (see OOAK post) the Ona earrings by Michelle Ross. They are equal parts 70s glam and earthy tribal. I’ve gone from having none of her pieces to three in three weeks (one was a necklace trade with Michelle for one of my clutches, one pair of earrings gifted by my BFF for Christmas and one purchased at the Nadine Parson sample sale – in my defense).  Ross makes everything by hand right here in Toronto and is here to stay.

Thoughtful shopping and we’ll see ya next year!