Saturday, October 26, 2013

Toronto Fashion Week 2013: My first fashion show!

So yesterday, I was definitely walking on clouds. At 1:45 PM I got a text from my friend Christine Lieu of In Lieu Of Apparel asking me if I wanted to go to see the 3 PM Hilary MacMillan show at World MasterCard Toronto Fashion Week. After about 15 minutes of deliberating due to the on-call I had at work for 6 PM (that's about a 1 1/2 hour commute away), I leaped into action and began scrambling for what to wear. You see, I have never been to Fashion Week. I have never seen a fashion show live. The closest I've ever gotten to seeing a live fashion show before yesterday was watching runways online and the Victoria's Secret fashion shows on TV. I had no idea what clothing to put on my body.

So after throwing probably every article of clothing and footwear I own around my apartment, I got dressed, threw on my most chic Steve Madden coat and ran like a mother****** out my door. I got to the tents right as it started to rain with 15 minutes to spare before the show. I was sweaty and gross and astonished my makeup had stayed in place... but I didn't care. I found Christine and we bolted inside and took our seats.

The runway was fairly small, with hoards of cameras at the end and likely no more than 100 or so seats in the room. Soon enough, the lights dimmed and music started to play. Out came the models one by one wearing some gorgeous designs. I love fashion, I really do. Just because I can't afford more than my student budget will allow, doesn't mean I didn't relish every second of this show. There were beautiful textures, transparencies, leathers and some gorgeous floral patterns. Everything was so simple, detailed and feminine, with a bit of an edge all at once. I would wear the majority of that collection had I the opportunity. Hilary MacMillan, bravo to you.

(Apologies for the poor photo quality. I didn't think to bring my Canon so all my photos are from my phone.)

After the show ended, Christine and I left to go check out some of the booths that were outside of the runways. There were quite a few: Maybelline, Target, Neostrata, Sony, Barbie... etc. And we went to all of them... aside from the Ciroc bar since neither of us really were in the mood for a drink. To avoid going into too much detail, I'll just cover my personal highlights:

Probably one of my favourite booths we stopped at was the Neostrata booth. For all those who live outside of Canada or are unfamiliar with the brand, Neostrata is a fantastic Canadian skincare company. The products are a bit on the pricier side, but you're paying for the product as they don't over-market their products or use any sort of gimmick-y packaging. They're simple and effective. The past week or so I've been trying out some of their line, one of which being their Smoothing Cream with 10% glycolic acid which I love. The lady at this booth was by far the friendliest we met while making our rounds and told us about how Neostrata is launching more of their glycolic products in 2014. Instead of just having one base product for everything in their skincare line, they've formulated a bunch more tailored to different skin types! This? This I'm very excited about. There's also a bunch more anti-aging stuff coming out which we were given samples of.. so what the heck. I'll try it!

There was also a Barbie booth commemorating Barbie's dream house with a photo op to pose in a cardboard cut-out of the elevator, but the lighting was so unflattering in there I can't even bear to post the photo in here! You can barely even see my face, the lighting cast such a shadow over it!

Next to the Barbie booth was a Target booth where you could try a new Maybelline lip gloss/liquid lipstick hybrid they're coming out with. I tried the colour, I believe it was called Violet Rush? It was actually really beautiful. There was a photo op at that booth too, though the email I was supposed to receive with the photos has yet to arrive, so if and when that comes in I'll post the pictures here! :)

Moving on to probably one of my favourite things ever, food. I was famished by the time I had ran all the way to the tents. I hadn't eaten all day. Luckily, there was actually food there! And catered by The Ritz-Carlton, no less. I grabbed myself a mozzarella and tomato sandwich with creamy pesto and a XXX Vitamin Water, which definitely hit the spot.

(Middle photo taken by Alex Yelizarov for #sonystreetstyle)

After eating half of my sandwich way too quickly and having the rest of it wrapped up to finish at home, Christine and I made our way out of the tents. Now, in more flattering lighting (high-contrast blue and red lighting don't typically work for me), we decided to stop and take some pictures in front of the tent to commemorate the day (and I suppose our outfits as well!). While taking these photos, we actually were stopped by a photographer asking to take our picture for World MasterCard Fashion Week's "Toronto Street Seen" photos. Christine found the picture on Facebook, and I absolutely love it. It makes me feel so cosmopolitan.

After taking some more photos, we both walked over to the subway and parted ways. The day was a whirlwind, but I loved every second of it. Once I got home I tore my heels off, plopped myself onto my couch a heaved a big sigh. I never thought that would be how I would spend those few hours of my day! I also was lucky enough to get some souvenirs and samples from the booths at the tent.

The sweet woman at the Neostrata booth PILED in the samples for us. I also got a door hanger from the Barbie booth, which I will likely be giving to my boyfriend or mother... as my bedroom door has no door handle. But probably my favourite things I took from the event and booths are the four things in the photo on the right. My ticket to the show I will definitely be keeping. I also got a chocolate that looks like a Target REDCard MasterCard, which I took oodles of pictures of before devouring it. Along with that, my two favourite samples were a tube of Maybelline's new Colossal Smoky Eyes mascara, which I'm excited to try as I've never really used any Maybelline mascaras aside from their Falsies one, which I didn't particularly like too much. And, of course, my AquaYouth wrinkle cream sample from Neostrata.

All in all, my first Fashion Week experience was amazing. I'd gladly go again. Thank you so much to Christine for inviting me! You're so sweet and wonderful, and thank you for putting up with how stupid and giddy I was acting all through the day.

If you would like to check out Christine's clothing line, In Lieu Of Apparel, I'll be adding some links to her website, Facebook page and Twitter! And if you liked the veiled toque/beanie she was wearing, she'll be selling those very soon. So follow her to find out when you can get your hands on one!

Stay sweet.


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