Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Behind the scenes

Sunday I was banned from any sort of communication by my family. Today and Monday I was heads down in my day job, hence the late post on behind the scenes.

To give you a little background - I have been writing stories and thinking about clothes and design ever since I can remember. Any book I read, I gave the character a wardrobe.

I have also been in the IT industry for 10 years. I've done work that I am proud of and won a few awards, but even speaking to a few hundred people at a product launch and coming off that buzz was NOTHING compared to Saturday night.

The sheer and total joy that I had from being part of a creative group of people that sincerely took pride in what they do was so much fun. Watching the hair and makeup looks being created, the dressers admiring the clothes, the models practicing their strut, the stylists and designers (me, too!) rushing about was bliss.

I arrived an hour early by mistake - which was actually fantastic. I had spent the day frantically trying to make the last few final masks and do a hundred and one other things while alternately refereeing or fending off my two year old son and five year old daughter. My husband engaged me in a lengthy conversation on whether or not to take his scooter or the car to run an errand for me (the damn scooter). My mother came early and was seriously concerned that my children may not have vegetables for their dinner that night (I REALLY didn't care). So you can see why an hour alone, even back stage was a very nice break.

Hayley from Birds of North America arrived and the two of us had a lovely stroll around the Elle show and checked out the Barbie collection on display. Paris, Kristen and Justine from Diepo and Anastasia slowly trickled in and we spent some time chatting, and snacking before we prepped our collections. It was good to spend some time together pre-madness. We had to practice our walks down the runway and even that was fun in a hanging with your girlfriends kind of way.

When Anastasia and I had our models dressed and lined, it was like watching a fashionista version of a West Side Story. The Jets and the Sharks ready to do the rumble. Our collections were so different but in a complimentary way.

People asked me whether I cared if I won. Before Saturday night, I did and I didn't.

That changed when I saw my models en masse in the collection, with perfect hair (Daniel Fiorio really is a perfectionist and sweet, sweet, sweet), gorgeous belts from Noelle, the lace masks, the top hats just so and the crinoline peeping out, I almost cried. It was one of the most wonderful things I have ever experienced. After seeing this in my head for such a long, long time it was almost a relief that what I had pictured came out better than I had hoped. Hearing the crowd applause spontaneously at a few looks was the icing on the cake.

I've felt all along with this thing, that we were not in competition with each other, but in competition with ourselves. There was no way that I ever could have created what any one of the other designers did because it was not my vision.

Did I care that I won in the end? Standing backstage with the models dressed and styled, I felt like I already did. Would I have liked the prize? Absolutely :>

Backstage pictures coming soon! Plus - my favourite pieces from my fellow designers.

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