Bright and early on the first day of Fashion Week in Toronto, I stood in front of a room of Ryerson Fashion Communication students as a guest speaker in their Fashion Photography class. Speaking to them about blogging professionally, and how to start a blog, I ended the session with the question: Which shows are you excited to see at Fashion Week? “Joe Fresh!” one student piped up, “Rudsak” said another.

“What about all of the independent designers?” I inquired, “Chloe Comme Parris, Sid Neigum, Klaxon Howl…” I couldn’t help but show my surprise that no one had named the talents, most notably those under The Collections umbrella, as the shows they were excited to see. Although, props to the girl who shouted out Laura Siegel from the back of the class.

To me, the only point of going to Toronto, pardon, World MasterCard Fashion Week, is to support the young burgeoning talents from our city (and nearby markets.) They’re often the most exciting to watch and are the ones responsible for leading the Canadian fashion industry in a direction that’s getting it noticed by major fashion markets around the world.

And it’s important to remember to support them. Not just by attending their shows, but by purchasing their clothing. The ones that they sit in their studios designing and creating right here at home. Perhaps the price tag isn’t comparable to fast-fashion chain stores, but then again, you can feel confident in knowing that the clothing on your back wasn’t made by a child. It will also feel better, and last longer than one wear, or one wash.

I will admit that the two beautiful statement pieces I’m wearing in this look were generously lent to me by the Chloe Comme Parris team to wear to their show. Their pieces aren’t always in my budget off the rack, but hey, they’ve got a sale section in their online store, and their sample sales are open to the public. You’ve got just as much opportunity to score a deal from some of our best local designers as I do.

*Visit Beauty Wholesalers*

What I Wore: Coyote and suede coat by Chloe Comme Parris, printed wrap skirt by Chloe Comme Parris, sunglasses by Celine, t-shirt by Mimi & Coco, clutch by Jenny Bird, shoes by Liz Cabral for Aldo.

All images by Rebecca Ramsdale