By: Lara Ceroni, Photography by Jenna Wakani
Denis Gagnon You know you have witnessed the true testament of genius when you are asked to explain it and, no matter how hard you try to wrap your head around the phenomena, you can’t. That’s sort of how I felt after
Denis Gagnon’s spring 2011 show on the last night of
LG Fashion Week. There I was, flanked by ELLE’s editor-in-chief
Noreen Flanagan and Janine Falcon (founder of with pen and paper in hand and I couldn’t manage to write One. Single. Thing. Down. I kept whispering to Noreen: What fabric is that? Silk? To Janine: Are those Swarovski crystals cascading down that model’s back? Is that colour mint? Ivy? I was dumbfounded, spellbound, immobile (Don’t even get my started on his handbags, or the
jewelry – created by one of my favourite
Montreal accessory designers.) The shimmy of the silk fringe was awe-inspiring; crafted with such precision and delicacy. The lace underlay on the dresses was sexy and unexpected, and the zippers, of course the zippers, added that grittiness we know and love.

Rita Liefhebber Being a
fashion designer in the Canadian market sometimes means you have to cow to commercialism more than creativity, but such was not the case for Rita Liefhebber’s first
spring 2011 collection. Not only did the stylist (and
alum) manage to make us girls want all the silk and jersey pieces for our work uniform, she also gave us plenty of slick options for the party circuit and our off-duty weekend wardrobes. Adored the sheer boyfriend blazer with cuffed sleeves and the gold-metallic pleated skirt paired with the cropped, knit top.