Anniversaries are always something to look forward to, whether it be the first anniversary of a new couple, or the fiftieth wedding anniversary of a couple together for a lifetime. Then there are the anniversaries that we all like to share in like the success of small business or the anniversary of a renowned Canadian fashion designer! Not one to typically speak of wedding anniversaries, and with more of a fashion focus, I guess you can see where I am going with this. Earlier this month in Calgary acclaimed Canadian designer Paul Hardy celebrated his ten year anniversary with a fashion event unlike any other. In addition to premiering his Spring Summer 2013 collection, fashion aficionados and VIP guests from across Canada were invited to the city of Calgary to celebrate the success of Hardy’s ready-to-wear line and his fantastic design career.
The city of Calgary may be better known for its Stampede than its shopping and fine dining which is why Hardy decided to show his collection there opposed to the city of Toronto which is where he normally presents his collections. “This year Calgary has been designated as the Culture Capital of Canada.” Explains Hardy and continues, “In partnership with Tourism Calgary, I look forward to showcasing my collection and showcasing my 10th anniversary in a city that I’m proud to call home. It’s an opportunity to show the rest of Canada Calgary’s cultural gems of food, fashion, music, and design. Calgary is truly evolving into a global center of finance, and in turn, I believe the city has been ready and waiting for this kind of event.”
The collection itself was inspired by a tale of an Amish girl who flees her colony, escaping to the big city where she gets caught up in the speak easy world of prohibition. In essence, it is the coming of age story of a girl attempting to find a greater sense of wholeness by reconciling the reverent traditions of her past with her human experiences in the world as she knows it. When looking at the pieces, I was impressed by the use of color, or the lack-there-of. Using mostly black and white and accents of greys, it really made the use of orange and French pool blue pop in the collection creating real statement pieces in the collection. There was also a lot of use of apparent silk blend fabrications, as well as metal blends, leather combinations and even tulle on tulle.
In addition to this magnificent show, Hardy will be launching a new handbag collection and an e-commerce site in the new year which will feature his leathers, knitwear, jewelry and his marvellous accessories. And, a fun fact! Remember the fun white hats that were given out at the Stampede this year to dignitaries, VIPs and the like? Hardy designed those!