Image by: Kiera Spronk
The designer told us about her unexpected new collab, her design process and what’s next for her brand.
Hayley Elsaesser’s designs scream "fun." Walk into her Queen West boutique on a cold winter day and you’ll instantly be transported to a much brighter, happier place. It’s not surprising that her cool, colourful aesthetic draws superstars like Miley Cyrus and Katy Perry to her clothing. So when Taco Bell reached out to the designer to create a one-of-a-kind Taco coat, saying yes was a no-brainer.
Miley Cyrus in a custom look by Hayley Elsaesser. (Getty Images)
“I’m always working with the purpose to produce a collection,” says Elsaesser. “So it was really fun for me to work on something that would be purely creative, something that I could just have fun with.”
The designer told us a little more about the unisex taco printed coat (which will be available for one lucky winner in a social media giveaway), and offered a sneak peek of what she’s working on right now.
“There are a lot of people who are very passionate about Taco Bell. If you’re a super-fan taco lover, it’s the perfect coat for you. It’s a winter jacket, the fabric itself is meant to be waterproof. If you’re eating a taco and you spill, it’s waterproof. It has an open-ended zipper, it has insulated pockets, so you can keep your tacos and your drinks warm, or just keep your phone and your keys in it. So it was meant to be a dual-purpose coat—for a taco super-fan, and as an everyday streetwear coat.”
“This was a fun breath of fresh air to work on. I love doing collaborations because it’s an extra challenge for me—to take something that I’ve never worked on and put my own spin on it. I can design prints in my sleep, so this was something outside of my everyday norm.”
“First I start thinking about an idea that I want to work on, something that I’m intrigued by at that particular time. For example, for the last collection I had the concept of My Little Pony, so that was about looking back and nostalgia. I have one set idea that I start building around, and then from there I develop a bunch of prints, and it’s like a puzzle for me, figuring out how to put it all together. Prints can be kind of crazy, so you have to be able to make them cohesive.”
“I’ve just done a presentation in New York, which is something I’ve never done before, and it’s really fun to create an atmosphere. It’s something that I wasn’t really able to do at Toronto Fashion Week in the past. I do love the runway, because I feel like it’s more exciting, it’s revealing one look at a time, so it’s a spectacle. And then for a presentation it's a little different—everything’s out there and you can have a closer look.”
“Designing takes a lot out of me. It’s just working non-stop and it’s really emotionally intense. I put a lot of myself and my feelings into my prints. So after I do a collection, I just need to take a little bit of a breather. There’s still work to be done—I’m doing a tradeshow next week. I’m just taking a break from the designing part so I can be refreshed when I start my new collection.”
“Footwear is a dream of mine. I love shoes in a huge way, but I haven’t had that opportunity yet. I’m currently working with a makeup brand, which is really, really exciting for me. I like to keep busy and keep on challenging myself creatively, and I love exploring all the different fields of what I’m interested in.”
Pippa Middleton at a British Heart Foundation even in February 2016.
Most importantly, what designer is Princess Charlotte wearing.
Taking a cue from her duchess big sis Kate, Pippa Middleton is keeping all the details of her upcoming wedding to hedge fund manager James Matthews on the DL.
But that hasn't prevented EVERYONE from weighing in on who they think will design the dress for the royal wedding 2.0. Giles Deacon emerged as number one in November when he was spotted leaving the Pipster's London house carrying a black garment bag (!!). Now, he's finally, kinda, sorta addressed the rumours.
Pippa Middleton at the royal wedding in 2011. Image by: Getty
"I can never really comment on rumours. Until things are confirmed it's just rumours," he told Hello! Fashion. "I think they've both got divine style. They're thoroughly modern girls promoting British brands and looking fantastic."
Pippa's wedding is reportedly on May 20.
Céline spring 2017 RTW Image by: Imaxtree
One writer's take on the oft-misunderstood shoe that is “safe but not sensible.”
Fashion watchers say that the kitten heel is ubiquitous this spring, but is it? Since the kitten heel is neither as flat as a crepe nor as high as a flagpole, much gets dumped into its medium-sized category that isn’t kitten, or, really, even feline, at all. In fact, it’s easier to say what a kitten heel isn’t than what it is.
It is certainly not a stiletto. Neither is it square, squat, sturdy or stacked, even if it’s medium height. What makes the Dior slingback with logo strap, Prada sandal, pointy Acne Studios slingback, Loewe moccasin and Céline babushka slipper kitteny is the indentation right at the top of the heel, called the “seat.” It makes the heel look like a comma. Sometimes, it’s so bent in that it looks like a cartoon shoe that has skidded to a screeching halt. And although the heel is shaped like an hourglass, it is imperatively skinny because a fat hourglass-shaped heel is for high kicks and tap dancing. “They give your leg a pretty silhouette,” says my friend Sabine. “And if you have full calves, kitten heels make them taper away and disappear.”
Christian Dior spring 2017 RTW (Imaxtree.com)
Kittens are great in-between shoes. They are safe but not sensible, dressy but not ditzy, stylish but not slavish. Which is why they were the heel of choice for Audrey Hepburn and Jackie Kennedy (and still are for Michelle Obama).
But what do we really think about the kitten heel? It isn’t a heel that inspires heated passion. By nature a compromise shoe, the kitten emerged in the 1950s as a “training” heel for younger girls. Designed for one’s first tentative steps in what was then the high-speed foot race for husbands and high heels, kittens are cute, tasteful, elegant and demure. They are the Baby Duck that comes before champagne. They are the quinceañera of footwear.
Givenchy spring 2017 RTW (Imaxtree.com)
That said, cats have their claws and so do kittens. When the heel is spiky and the toe pointy, like last fall’s white Balenciaga bootie, it can be an interesting, aggressive shoe. Diana Rigg wore a black leather bodysuit and kitten booties as she kung-fu-chopped villains in the ’60s TV show The Avengers. Sharp kitten heels, torn fishnets, bird’s-nest pompadours and gobs of black eyeliner was how punk icons Exene Cervenka, Siouxsie Sioux and PJ Harvey rolled in the 1980s and early 1990s. These were not women of moderate taste, as the kitten heel is wont to express. This shows that it’s a shoe with plenty of wiggle room for personality and, possibly, even rebellion—a shoe exactly suited to our times.
Image by: Getty
Perhaps predictably, February is the busiest month of the year for some wax bars. "It's like Christmas!" says Amy Finnegan Burns, director of operations for WAXON Waxbars. "People are going away on vacation, doing something for Family Day or celebrating Valentine's Day. With those three things combined, we are always fully booked after the sixth of February."
The most popular service for WAXON, which has six locations across Ontario and one in Nova Scotia, is still the Brazilian wax. "Everything bare" has consistently been the most requested service over the last 5 years, and makes up 70% of the brand's business. "The one thing that people do switch up depending on their mood or personal preference is leaving a landing strip," says Finnegan Burns. "We are seeing a slight growth in landing strips for women."
What has changed about the Brazilian wax are the people getting them. "What we’ve seen is a spread in demographic," she says. It's not just 25 year-olds requesting the service – clients are anywhere from 17 to 70 years of age. The most dramatic growth they've seen is in the 55+ age group, which increased by 10% for the company in the last year.
(A brief public service announcement: You need to wait 24 hours before engaging in sexual activity after having a wax. "That friction isn’t ideal for sensitivity and ingrown hairs," says Finnegan Burns. Valentine's Day falls on a Tuesday this year, so that means you want to aim to wax – if that's your preference, we're by no means saying waxing or shaving is a must – Saturday, Sunday or Monday.)
The second most popular service for female clients? Arm waxing, which has seen a "massive increase" in the last two years, particularly in the summer months. "Nostrils is up there as well," says Finnegan Burns, who promises this is not as painful as it sounds. Hard wax is applied to a popsicle stick and spread on the outer and inner corner of the nostrils, then left to harden before being pulled out. "It is a quick 3 minutes," she says. "Among women and men it is becoming an incredibly popular add-on service. Five years ago, I don’t think [that demand] really existed."