Last night I stopped by the Burroughes Building where Philip Sparks kicked off two weeks of fashion shows and events with his men’s and women’s fall/winter 2011 presentation. Once inside the packed venue, I was greeted by giant tapestries by Grant Heaps and a rustic set design—a nod to the collection that followed.
This season the Canadian King of Vintage-inspired, Nostalgia-inducing Designs was inspired by Canadian winter and the well-curated collection of outerwear, sharply tailored suiting and feminine, Mad Men-esque dresses reflected that inspiration.
The menswear collection included enough signature pieces to reinvigorate the Philip Sparks fan’s wardrobe while the womenswear collection was a pleasant continuation of the Spring/Summer 2011 collection. Instead of cherry blossom prints on rompers and dresses, Sparks created a Maple leaf photo print that was placed on skirts, blouses and cocktail dresses.
Layering and texture via tweed, plaid, mountain sheep fur and cable knit sweaters dominated the collection but small details like indigo jeans that reveal flannel lining when cuffed, a pin-tucked shirtdress and a women’s suit with purple lapels (a nod to Janelle Monáe?) highlighted the expert construction.
The fur trend that we’ve seen all over the runways of New York, London, Paris and Milan continued at the Sparks show however this blogger was not a fan of the mountain sheep fur collars, hats, scarves, mittens and muff despite the effusive rave reviews from the fashion flock.
Standout pieces included an oversized Ontario blanket scarf, an olive-green Melton duffle coat with contrasting toggle buttons and a deep burgundy leather bomber jacket with grey shawl collar and accents.
Sparks knows his customer base very well and offered a stylish, timeless collection made up of wearable everyday pieces that can withstand the test of time and the sub-zero temperatures of Canadian winters.