Ashtiani and Caitlin Power F/W 2012

Fashion week will always have it’s mainstays, presenting season after season, yet it’s also a great way to discover (and support) up and comers, especially if they show promise. This is the case with two recent talents from the world’s first fashion incubator (based in Toronto).

Golnaz Ashtiani presented her “Ethereal” collection. Inspired by surrealism and the photography of Oleg Dou, her F/W 2012 was a journey through touch. Known for hand-pleated details, Ashtiani juxtaposed warm fabrics (textured wool, mohair and patent leather) with cool tones (cream, light grey, mint and navy) that brought a chill and reserve to the modern shapes. Taking apart the layers (mostly used for styling purposes) and the occasional wing, and what remained was a series of wearable pieces.

Whereas Ashtiani went to the distant future, Caitlin Power remained a little closer to the present. There were hints of recent Givenchy collections, as evidenced by the strong tailoring. The sharply-cut pants and sheer tops were balanced with tops emphasizing rounded shoulders. Wool and leather were juxtaposed with chiffons, while blocks of black, green (including a botanical-like print), grey, and blue were the colour story.

For the first time, Power showed men’s pieces alongside her women’s wear that were just as strong. Tightly edited with a focus on dress shirts and pants (with the occasional outerwear piece thrown in for good measure), the line was well-tailored minus the drop crotch pants (no man wants to look like he has a saggy butt).

Ashtiani and Power are two designers to keep an eye out for.

Written by: Steven Carver

Photos courtesy of Steve Alkok (