October 19, 2011 5:47 am

Mercedes-Benz Start Up: The 5 flavours of emerging Canadian talent


TORONTO – LG Fashion Week had the first ever Mercedes-Benz Start Up competition runway show on Tuesday evening, where emerging Canadian designers had the chance to showcase their works on the same stage as VAWK, Pink Tartan and David Dixon. This program is in association with the Fashion Design Council of Canada and the objective is to discover the up-and-coming Canadian designers. There were five designers in the final round and each brought a different flavour to the runway.

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José Manuel St-Jacques and Simon Bélanger, the brains behind UNTTLD, were all about contrast in this collection. The contrast elements included the shades black and white, jersey and leather, and zipper and crochet. It was wonderful to see the designers blend these elements together to create a stunning and edgy collection.

As for Triarchy, the main element was denim. Adam Taubenfligel, the self taught designer behind this brand, created some amazing denim pieces which made every model looked sexy and bold. The stripped jeans and the biker jacket were highlights of the collection.

Countryside flavour was what Cassie Dee brought to the runway with her collection. Red lines mimicked tree roots, and floral prints brought a joyful, summer vibe to the show. The last white floral print gown was the standout of her collection.

Travis Taddeo’s collection was urban and dark. Taddeo showed off his signature elements, such as minimal lines and the use of jersey fabrics. Overall Taddeo created a highly wearable collection.

Danielle Martin and Pao Lim, the duo behind Martin Lim, presented a surreal and dreamy collection for the Spring/Summer 2012 season. Pieces were airy and the pastel blue, pink and cream colours made the entire collection delicious, as if the models were covered in ice cream.

Even though in the end Martin Lim took home the winner title of the Mercedes-Benz Start Up program, each finalist has injected a unique positive flavour to the Canada fashion industry. It will be interesting to see them evolve in the next few seasons – hopefully they will continue to shine in the Canadian fashion scene.



Marcus Kan is Editor in Chief of à la mode, and one of Global News’ fashion insiders during LG Fashion Week.


For more on Marcus, click here, or follow him on Twitter @fusionofeffects.

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