Doll Me Up
For some reason, there aren't a lot of local retailers who carry mainly Canadian designers. Paper-Doll.com, a Toronto based online retailer is one of the few exceptions. The store has been in existence for six years and is the best place to find a lot of great independent talent. You won't find a wider selection of contemporary streetwear anywhere.
When asked about her vision for only buying Canadian, buyer Leigh Thompson replied,"I've always wanted to offer something a little different. To many of my customers in the USA (and even some in Canada) Paper-Doll.com is their only source for most of the labels I carry. I've stocked mainly Canadian designers because I think there are so many talented designers in Canada. House of Spy, OK47, Perplex and Lola, BodyBag - they're all so unique and talented, I haven't really had to look beyond Canada yet...."
In keeping with this philosophy of supporting independent talent, Leigh has also added another art forum called "The Artist Project" where she encourages young, undiscovered photography talent to photograph clothing she buys for the store.
Her reason for starting this project?
"There are so many young women (and men) out there using the internet / digital cameras / blogs to showcase their talent, and I wanted to tap into that. Many of these artists use themselves as the models, so their photos are a lot more personal. I also wanted to give these young artists a platform to show their work - to get it out of just the blog circles. And, I have people from all over the world participating in the project - from Australia, Poland, Japan, Italy, America, Canada, etc. I like sending these artists a package of clothes, and letting them style the items themselves. It gives more diversity to the site - rather than me or a stylist always setting up the photos."
We love that!
Photos by Wheat Wurtzburger for Paper-Doll.com.
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