Fashion Art Toronto (FAT) isn’t just a fashion week; it’s a pulsating artistic community celebrating the cultural ethos of Toronto’s emerging designers. Each year, the event becomes a melting pot of innovation, diversity, and boundary-pushing sartorial expression. In its 18th year, FAT once again captivated audiences with a plethora of runway presentations, from elegant evening-wear to iconoclastic club-kid couture.
Here are a few standout presentations that stole the spotlight and pushed the boundaries of Canadian fashion.
Brandon Keir sent a fusion of goth, punk, and club kid aesthetics that pulsated with the vibrant energy of Toronto’s iconic nightlife scene. Featuring a distinct homage to Toronto’s nightlife luminaries, Keir ingeniously collaborated with iconic personalities from the city’s queer scene, infusing their personas and distinctive styles into the fabric of his creations. The collection itself was a symphony of dark rebellion; all glossy textures, and bold embellishments, intricately detailed leatherwork, chains, studs, and unconventional silhouettes were interwoven to create an avant-garde visual narrative.
Mario Fugnitto’s runway presentation at Fashion Art Toronto was a captivating blend of Italian influences and urban flair, featuring structured denim, distressed leather, and an array of nostalgic fashion references. The collection paid homage to the certain laissez-faire chic of nightlife with subtle nods to cigarettes and Kate Moss, while embracing a gender-fluid aesthetic. Quilted patterns celebrating diverse bodies added depth, accompanied by collaborations with local drag artists. The show hinted at a promising future for Fugnitto’s brand, leaving an impression of the designer’s distinctively inclusive and referentially-astute design ethos.
Mr. Haque’s runway at Fashion Art Toronto unfolded like a theatrical masterpiece, showcasing a mesmerizing fusion of avant-garde elegance and dramatic flair. Replete with leather and silk, dollar bills adorned models heads and waistbands whilst slouchy silken headpieces and derby hats accented subtle nods to old (or was it new?) money. With a nod to the artistry of drag queens, Haque feminized silhouettes while maintaining the designer’s signature aesthetic. Dancing between structured leather, satin, and eccentric fluidity, the show culminated in a bombastic theatrical choreo sequence on the runway.
For Fall 23′ Vveyago presented a mesmerizing showcase of structural leather craftsmanship, spotlighting skin-baring jackets with daring jagged cuts in enigmatic dark hues. The presentation was rife with shimmered fabrics and pleated, structured denim, boasting boned bodices offset by elegant pleated skirts. Rome Ramsay’s visionary designs, meticulously crafted in his signature materials, encapsulated a bold narrative of empowerment and allure. Each garment, a testament to Ramsay’s mastery, exuded a contemporary edge whilst honouring the brand’s signature blend of structural elegance and sartorial innovation. It was a display of confident style and audacious design, cementing Vveyago’s position as a frontrunner in the Toronto scene.
Tristan Réhel’s offering this season was a quintessentially unique fusion of vibrant creativity and unapologetic self-expression. Réhel presented an array of tulle creations in a spectrum of rainbow hues, offset by feathered headpieces and shimmering gowns. Flowing velour dresses, accentuated by subtle cutouts, added a touch of avant-garde elegance, whilst accessories were equally eccentric featuring rope tied cotton and tulle and metal chained shoulder bags. With meticulous craftsmanship and a playful spirit, Réhel’s runway presentation was a portrait of eccentricity which could only be birthed in a city like Montreal.
Kerotix Fall 23′ offering was a masterclass in styling, structure, and proportion. Leather and denim were sculpted into exaggerated proportions, accentuated shoulders and cartoon-like silhouettes. Colours were bold and stark with blacks, blues and reds offset by librarian-esque reading glasses adorning models faces a la Gisele Bundchen in The Devil Wear Prada. Playing with unconventional structures, silhouettes, materials, and pop-cultural aesthetics, Kerotix was an undeniable standout this season.
Cody is the Editor in Chief and senior contributor at liminul.
He is a photography aficionado, fashion enthusiast, avid Lana Del Rey fan, and lover of all things aesthetically pleasing.