Usually designers and boutiques enlist the help of stylists to showcase their work on the runway and not the other way around. But as local stylists Christine Dale and Monica Berg prove, people who normally work tirelessly behind the scenes deserve to take centre stage as well.
The two style mavens recently did a bangup job of hosting a collaborative unisex fashion show called “Anthology”, in which they mixed and matched spring/summer pieces from a few different indie clothing stores, including Lark (2315 Main Street), the Block (350 West Cordova) and True Value Vintage Clothing (710 Robson Street—for now; sadly, it’s set to close at the end of July). And they couldn’t have picked a better venue for the event. If you haven’t been to Guilt & Co. (1 Alexander Street), it’s a funky little venue under Chill Winston that looks and feels like a Glaswegian church basement that’s been converted into a minitheatre.
Surprisingly, the wardrobe experts kept the outfits simple and didn’t overaccessorize or make a point of showing us all how eclectic they are as stylists. Instead, Dale and Berg let the clothes more or less speak for themselves.
The first outfit down the makeshift catwalk was a tough act to follow. Here we had a beautiful black-silk Surface to Air jumpsuit ($425 at the Block) that had a cute, but not overly whimsical, cream palm-tree and flamingo pattern. Dale and Berg paired this one with a black ’70s A.P.C. floppy hat ($150 at the Block) and some vintage platforms from True Value. Adding to the undeniable indie-French appeal of this ensemble was the model who rocked it down the runway—her wispy Carla Bruni bangs were a perfect match for this chic Paris-meets-East Van look.
That wasn’t the only one-piece to turn heads. The duo paired some rolled-up, pin-striped denim Chimala overalls ($648 at Lark) with a plain red T-shirt and some sockless black oxford footwear—the whole getup was supercute in an updated “Come on Eileen” kinda way.
Another standout among the women’s outfits was the silk tunic-style Navajo-patterned dress ($325 at the Block) from Tucker by Gaby Basora, a New York designer who makes her own prints. She also created the fabric for her beautiful multicoloured cami ($195 at the Block). To showcase this top, Dale and Berg paired it with some simple black walking shorts and a wide-brimmed straw hat—a refreshing change from the fedora.
For men, it was all about ’50s-inspired shirts, rolled-up pants, and vintage oxfords with no socks. There was also a surprise celebrity model on hand. Steve Bays of Hot Hot Heat fame sported an A.P.C. safari jacket ($425) with matching cotton-twill pants ($235) and a short-sleeved white shirt ($140), all from the Block. He also rocked a sky-blue, waxed-cotton, pullover raincoat ($325 at the Block), which was designed by one of Vancouver’s newest fashion talents, Ian Chen.
Bays got cheers from the packed room, yes. But in the spirit of collaboration, so did every model. All in all, it was a smashing success, and I wouldn’t be surprised if more stylists start getting their names out there by throwing fashion shows. Kudos to Dale and Berg—they may have just started their very own trend.