Every summer the Festival Mode & Design sees the heart of downtown Montreal turn into an open-air catwalk. There are models everywhere, enough cool clothes to fill 500 walk-ins and, this year, a crazy awesome urban forest installation along Victoria Street. We asked local fashion blogger Lolitta Dandoy to list her fave events…
This year, Festival Mode & Design runs from August 1 to 4 right downtown, and kicks off with a bang: a 200-metre high-heeled race along McGill College on August 1 at 12:30 pm. “That race is very important to me,” says Lolitta, not only because she’ll be among the runners (it’s apparently a blast, calluses and all), but because all proceeds go toward cancer research.
“I had cancer two years ago, and it was incredibly intense and hard, but I’m much stronger today,” says the beaming beauty. That’s when she decided to live her dream, a very popular personal fashion website Fashion Is Everywhere, in addition to the street-fashion column she does for Clin d’Oeil magazine.
For prospective participants, the high-heeled race requires teams of two (it’s a relay race) where each participant is wearing heels of seven inches (ouch!) or more. The run is absolutely not restricted to women – in fact, last year a married couple won! (Hubby had a way with stilettos.) It costs $50 dollars for a team of two to sign up, and for that fee you also get a much-needed foot massage and access to the baths at the amazing spa Bota Bota after the race. The three winning teams will also get other goodies from Bota Bota. (Register here)
A more recent endeavor of Lolitta’s will be front and centre in the spotlight at the fest later on August 1: it’s a fashion show on the Sélecte Stage at 6:45 pm for her collection of international finds, which she sells in her online boutique, My Walk.In. “They’re fashion finds that I’ve accumulated over the last 17 years, mainly when I travel. I’ll be showcasing 15 looks for now and 15 looks for fall.” Not to be missed.
As for the rest of the events: “There’s a fashion show called Podium, presenting the sportswear trend, by Mélanie Brisson, one of my preferred Montreal stylists. She’s going to style a whole trend that’s very sporty, very technically inspired, very ‘90s. It’s on Friday, August 3, at 10 pm on the main stage, and it promises to include cheerleaders – I think it’s going to be a really fun show!”
In addition to all the shows by popular brands like Mexx, Forever 21 and Quiksilver, a really exciting way to get to know Montreal fashion are the events presenting highlights from Montreal Fashion Week, happening on Thursday, August 2 at 9:30, and Saturday, August 4 at 9:30 on the main stage.
“It’s always a great time,” says Lolitta. “The trends are modeled by Quebec celebs – this year Misstress Barbara will be walking, as well as famous Montreal designer Denis Gagnon! I’m sure he’ll have the goods.” And last but not least? “I’m super excited for the Bollywood show, on the very last night, Saturday August 4, at 10 on the main stage. It’ll be a Bollywood fashion show styled by Sophie Lanza, plus a Bollywood performance. The jewelry is going to be amazing!”
Festival Mode & Design, August 1-4, 2012