boot love – mystery girl

Irene at 69 Vintage Buy the Pound posted this picture of an adorable girl in horned-rim glasses and a colourful vintage dress… wearing my Dr. Martens design, purchased from NEON!  Pretty cool to see my boots on someone who is not a friend… but I am too curious.  Who is this girl with such tremendous taste in footwear?

If you can introduce me to her, or if you’ve bought a pair of boots yourself, email me please – it makes my day to see these out and about.

UPDATE: Mystery solved!  Marie sends me this lovely note:

I came across your posting –  The cool little pixie is Kendra.  My favorite gal pal, my adorable niece, a whimsical angel in my old aunty soul.

My sister and I took her shopping for shoes for her grade 8 grad.  She is has the heart and soul of an artist and when she spied your boots in neon it was love at first sight.  The boots were bought to ground her during her grade 8 grad and also because Kendra had no interest in rocking her grad in heels.  The boots inspired her to support local designers and in the end her dress equally amazing was bought from Freedom Clothes near Dovercourt and Bloor.  All inspiration for the grad came from the boots up.

She is everything that mishevious grin in the picture shows – she is a delight, she is  unique, she is whimsical…

What a beautiful story!   I remember how transformative Dr. Martens were for me when I was younger.  I can’t express how happy it makes me that someone like Kendra fell in love with my boots “at first sight” — and that it inspired her to style her grad outfit with the work of other local designers. Thanks so much Kendra and Marie!

a week’s worth – 31-07-09

A Week’s Worth, documents what I did all week – a little peek into the life of a fashion illustrator and blogger.  Pardon the two week hiatus there on AWW.  I was bad about carrying the camera around for a bit there.  But this week, the perfect combination of rain and high sun made for some terrific pictures.  Plus, stuff happened…

On Tuesday I woke up bright and early to walk to Holt Renfrew and see the Holiday 2009 preview.  Holt Renfrew holidays are much different than my holidays. There was a distinct seaside-on-the-south-Pacific sort of vibe, from bubbly sea creature looking purses –
bubble bag at Holt Renfrew
To fishy sandals.
fishbone sandal at Holt Renfrew

That evening I went to a panel hosted by IDS10, the big consumer interior design show that is happening from January 21 to 24 next year.  IDS is currently recruiting the best Canadian and international designers, mostly of furniture, interiors and objects.
IDS panel at The Gladstone
The discussion, hosted by Karen Von Hahn and featuring fiesty designer Patty Johnson, curator Rachel Gotlieb and Shaun Moore and Julie Nicholson from Made Gallery – was lively.  On the topics of Canadian based design, its advantages and struggles, was taken in by a bright and attentive crowd.
audience at IDS panel

Notes I took include:

Canadians want to be International not local. The paradox is that int’l markets are looking for a savvy sense of identity.

The design market is a fashion market.  It is about intellectual engagement – Patty

To young designers:  Don’t think so HARD, so EARNESTLY.

Trend among int’l design customers – opposition to “low” American Culture.

If Canada was an emerging market (and it is) here is a plan for developing a robust design industry: focused projects on reviving local industries before they disappear. Broader representation of first nations, mennonites, indigenous materials.  Designers need to be more inventive in conceiving their ideas according to the technical ability and resources available locally.

Never ignore your local market.  It is a mistake.

Thursday early evening I dropped by the Umbra store on John Street for an evening shopping event-thing.  There was a big lineup when I got there because apparently the first 20 people get a $20 gift card.  Aw, carrots.
lineup at Umbra
I went in and was glad I did – never been in Umbra before.  It has a lot of small objects in it, like bath fixtures, lamps, jewelry hangers, mostly in bright plastic colours, black white and chrome.  Things were inexpensive, some quite cool and several would be easily DIY’ed.
inside Umbra

On my way through Kensington market my spidey sense spotted another fashion blogger in the vicinity – Jacquieshambles.  She was hanging out with her friend Paul from fashion school at Humber.  As I have just as great affection for fashion students and fashion bloggers, we all hit it off like old friends.
Jacquie and Paul in Kensington
Jacquie and Paul were both showing off some excellent denim, proudly unwashed.  Adorable denim freaks.

After that I walked up to the new consignment boutique, Drool, at 198 Augusta Avenue.  I was invited by Olga, designer of Decadent Designs.  I took this meta-picture of Enza Supermodel taking Olga’s picture, plus the small child, the dog and the fashion illustration in the background, what a perfect moment.
Olga, a small child a dog and Enza
Then I took a picture of Olga in front of the big mural in front of the store.
Olga at Drool
Like the mural, Drool itself is a bit of a hodge-podge – pretty accessories (including Feathered), gothy stuff, printed t-shirts, some cute boho stuff, it sort of seems more like a bazaar than a boutique, which fits into Kensington just fine.

How was your week?

on blogging – amazon picks

As an experiment, I am picking some favourite books and DVDs from and putting them in the far right sidebar below the sponsors.  Its a selection of items I recommend enthusiastically and will be updated from time to time as I figure this whole affiliation thing out.  If you are a Canadian reader interested in a way to support the site, consider purchasing these items by clicking the cover images.  Thanks!

client karma – Coko Galore

coko galore

I met Coko Galore as a fashion blogger when she was contributing to  In addition to being a fashion lover and writer, Coko is a singer and lyricist with a bright, bubbly and honest style just like her fashion sense. Have a listen – check out her single, “Those Girls”.

She asked me to help design her album art for her big debut (January 2010) and commissioned a fashion figure too – I adore repeat clients – and she is also a proud owner of my Dr. Martens earning her a VIP pass to my heart forever.  I asked her a few questions about music and style.

You’re launching your debut album. What can a new listener expect to hear?

Listeners can definitely expect a mix of sweet, funky, electronic, smart-pop! It’s just fun music for your ears with words for you to think about!

You write all of your own lyrics – what comes first, the lyrics or the song? What makes a good lyric?

The idea and theme for a song always comes first, so I would say the lyrics. This album’s lyrical content is based on what I’ve seen and/or experienced. I love writing about the truth so I’m going to say good lyrics are based on honesty. If it’s how you see it and/or feel it, it’s true and it’s good!

What fashion items define your sense of style? Do you have any favourite fashion designers?

My staples are the purse, the dress and the jacket (because I’m always cold:P). For me, these items can be be relaxed and fun, yet serious and elegant. I love that fashion has extremes and therefore can reflect my mood. It can be very simple, clean and elegant, and yet be complicated, extravagant and outrageous. My definite favourites are Marc Jacob, Michael Kors, Betsey Johnson, and Vivienne Westwood.

Who are your mentors or heroes? How have they contributed to your development as an artist?

The most important thing for me is to stay motivated and work hard towards achieving my goals in art through truth while staying grounded. I’m definitely very inspired by popular media figures that have done the same. In terms of style and art, I’m more influenced by Alanis Morissette, Faye Wong and Bjork, because I identify with the way they really explore themselves through their work. For personality, I’m inspired by Audrey Hepburn and Nelson Mandela, just because their actions have shown me that I do not need to take anything for granted nor be snotty in order to achieve success. With all this being said, my main mentor and hero is my mother, not to be cliche, but she has always allowed me to be who I am without judgement and given me the opportunity to achieve my goals.

click click – 28-07-09

Welcome to Click Click, the regular roundup of what I find worth clicking on the internet.

Toronto-centric stuff

Fashion blog karma for incoming linkers and commenters…

  • thesoulofmyshoes – “I love all things related to fashion and when I see a beautiful pair of shoes my heart rate goes up and my eyes light up, it is my passion and first love.”
  • Haiasi :: Custom Made Silk Scarves – “Haiasi is dedicated to crafting exquisite and unique pieces that can spruce up any outfit and is committed to donating 20% of the profits to charities based in Canada that help the community.”

a word from… July 09 sponsors


A word from… is a monthly news post contributed by the sponsors who support Final Fashion.  All of my sponsors are intrepid entrepreneurs with a lot of personality, and I encourage you to check out what they are doing and making.  Just click on their badges in the far right sidebar to get it straight from the source.  If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please get in touch!

Badur from PunkMedics says…

I just redid my entire studio space to improve my workflow and threw some pics up on flickr – thought your readers might want to see what the space looks like and what it takes to make skincare products.


Jas from Savillian says…


We are in the thick of wedding season and so our weekends are booked with styling Savillian grooms and occasionally having the privilege to attending weddings and see our suits in action. We are currently gearing up for an exciting fairytale inspired photo shoot as well as our big move into the Toronto Fashion Incubator in August. You can keep informed by reading all the details on our blog.

In photo: 2 piece grey pinstripe super 100 suit; 3 piece brown/red checked super 120 suit; 3 piece black wool/silk suit

Erin from Las Valentias says…

Our Spring 10 line is being represented by Theori Agency in Vancouver, who represent the B.C., Alberta, Manitoba, Sask. and N.W.T., also, we are participating in Fashion CURES à la mode, a fashion show in Ottawa to raise funds for breast cancer.


boot love – Christy Burton


My internet friend Christy Burton (we “met” on Fashion-Incubator) purchased my Dr. Martens design (yes you can get them shipped to the USA) and sent me this picture showing them off on Twitter.  Love her happy face and she says she loves her new boots too!

These new boots have put me in such a good mood I can barely sit still. I should wear them every day! I feel like a superhero.

You can buy the boots here – and if you do, please send me a picture, it makes me so happy to see them being worn!

events – The Sartorialist in Toronto


Back in 2005, when fashion bloggers were new and few, somebody named Scott Schuman emailed me a link to his new blog.  I told him I liked it and wished him luck.  It wasn’t long before it was apparent that he had a good idea at the right time, the right media to distribute it in and the perfect combination of location and social contacts to make it all come together.  The Sartorialist has been incredibly influential in making fashion blogging acceptable to the fashion establishment, and the window display and exhibition at Holt Renfrew are just the latest items to prove it.

Schuman has also just launched a new book of his favourite images from the past four years, called (of course) The Sartorialist.

Scott had obviously come off of a long day of travel, public appearances and other obligations, and he was deservedly enjoying his wine, so we can forgive him for some rambling answers to audience questions (among these – no, he does not like to be called a fashion blogger).  Even so he was gregarious and gracious in the best American way when Anita and I introduced ourselves for a moment.  He has a great handshake, too.

Photo by Nicole Stafford of FASHION Magazine.

invitation – Frugal Fashion Week


Pardon my lateness in mentioning this, though there is still time to check out what is going on at Frugal Fashion Week on Queen West.

Toronto Frugal Fashion Week consists of a series of inspired events, including a street-wide shop crawl, a fabulous brunch, guerilla fashion shows, a silent auction and a fundraiser featuring designs from local boutiques. Local hotspots, including the Drake Hotel, Chasse Gardée and The Social will present FFW events.