Peggy Sue Collection: Transparent and Traceable Wows the Runway
A Fibershed is a geographical landscape that defines and gives boundaries to a natural textile resource base. Awareness of this bioregional designation engenders appreciation, connectivity, and sensitivity for the life-giving resources within our homelands. –Fibershed.com
The term fibershed may sound more like an outbuilding on a farm than a rising movement in the localization of fashion. But fashion is going to have to cede to this new (albeit) awkward term because it is unabashadely ‘off-the-farm’ and has hit the runway and fashion pages. For those concerned about where their clothes come from, fibershed is fashion in the purest sense, and American-cum-Canadian designer Peggy Sue Deaven-Smiltnieks is determined to show us just how beautiful it can be.
Last Sunday, to a packed Toronto Women’s Fashion Week house, the RISD graduate debuted her Annual Collection. The second for the Peggy Sue Collection. As the winner of last year’s Toronto Fashion Incubator New Labels prize, Peggy Sue’s previous collection proved how gorgeous and sumptuous local fibers, in their natural colors or naturally dyed, can look when woven into chic sweaters and jackets.
Determined to prove that farm-to-fibre can work for all seasons, the Annual Collection featured organic, colour-grown cottons, original print designs, handwoven fabrics and delicate sashiko stitching in a collection that was entirely traceable and Made in Canada. Shared Peggy Sue,
When designing the annual collection, I focused on three words: connected, conscious and regenerative. I wanted to create luxe fabrics and fashion-forward designs that celebrated made in Canada, respected the people of our supply chain and envisioned fashion as a sustainable practice. I wanted to show luxury from an ethical perspective.
To connect the VIP guests to the essence of the designer’s inspiration, each were given a small handwoven bag made from Sally Fox’s colour-grown cotton, containing a cotton boll. The bolls, said Peggy Sue,
Are a tangible connection to the materials that were being presented on the runway. Holding raw, organic cotton on your hand, feeling its texture and noting its delicate structure, reminds us that our fashion starts in the fields and on the farms. It reminds us that fashion is a living entity and is intimately connected to the well being of both people and planet.
For the finale, the crowd broke into cheers as members of Peggy Sue’s supply chain joined the designer on the catwalk. Peggy Sue proudly donned a made in Toronto t-shirt that said “Fashion Can Support People and Planet“. While behind her, members of the supply chain wore similar tshirts that identified their particular role: “I Grow Your Fashion“, “I Mill Your Fashion“, “I Make Your Fashion“.
With respect for both small runs and preserving the resources from which they are made, The Annual Collection was presented as a ‘see now, buy now’ collection. Guests were invited to place orders directly following the show. The collection is now available for pre-order online. Our favorites included those made from North American organic cotton or hand stitched Canadian upcycled denim. See more here.