After months of late nights, hard work and endless excitement, my final year at Ryerson culminated with a sensational fashion show displaying all of our unbelievable collections. It was a wild day and night filled with celebration, praise and even a few celebrity appearances!
But, before I get too swept up gushing about it, here is a glimpse into the work behind the scenes.
Preparations got going the day before the show, with Stacey McKenzie coaching the models as I packed up the outfits. I matched accessories with garments, putting them all together in bags with a picture of the model on the front. I then brought everything to Mattamy Athletic Centre where I found the rack I would share with another designer. Things were really starting to feel real!
April 1st was the actual show day. At 6am, my beyond-fantastic team showed up at my Toronto apartment to begin with hair. By 7:45am, we were onto makeup and totally on schedule to arrive at Mattamy Athletic Centre for 10am. Here, my sister Lindsay was backstage helping me steam the garments and dress the models. By 10:45, we were ready for the noon show! There were over 600 people backstage and the energy was wild!
However - before I go on, I need to thank my incredible team who once again, brought Jane and my collection to life.
- Hair: The Wire Princess
- Makeup: Cassia Todan
- Models (in order of runway appearance): Rebecca Krulick, Lacey Robertson, Jackie Maclean, Shayla Bond and Jillian Bennett.
The noon show contained all 61 of the graduating collections. As a Take Me to Church remix began to play, my first model Rebecca brought Jane onto the runway. Each of the five models brought confidence, sass and spunk - everything and more that I had hoped for!
Jeanne Beker, curator for the Industry evening show, watched this midday performance as the final piece to her judging process. In January, we had submitted sketches, our inspiration and forms that detailed how our collections embodied the guiding principles of Mass Exodus: heritage, diversity and innovation. During the show, she worked with Robert Ott and Wayne Clark - Chair of Ryerson's School of Fashion and the In-House Fashion Design Mentor - to select the Top 17 collections that would walk again at tonight's industry show.
After the show, we all anxiously waited for the results. Jeanne gave a thoughtful speech that spoke to how she narrowed her choices based on those that told a unique story. I was SHOCKED when she announced my collection as a finalist! I had to quickly re-jig a lunch with all the people who supported me so that I could prepare for the evening ahead.
All in all, this afternoon was more than incredible. Seeing all the collections pulled together and styled was an honour and delight after this year of hard work. I loved seeing all the directions my peers took, and was grateful for the chance to recognize our collective successes!