Chip and Pepper Toronto

This Week in Fashion: Mercedes Benz Start-Up, Chip and Pepper at the Templar Hotel, Bonnaroo, Alice in Wonderland, Woodlawn launch party

This week in fashion is a weekly round up of what's being talked about - or bitched about - in Toronto's style scene.

1. Toronto almost (sort of) got a new fashion week, but then we didn't. Aspiring designers though, take note.
Bloggers and style journos were wet with anticipation last week when Mercedes-Benz (yes, the car company) sent out a vague invite to a 'special announcement' at their dealership way East. There was, of course, speculation that the luxury giant may take over LG Fashion Week in October and brand it under their own name like in New York or Berlin - you know, making it global, recognizable and probably more popular. Benz reps denied the claim, but the FDCC sent out a tweet about an exciting announcement. We were confused.

Turns out, the gathering was to announce the launch of a new Start Up program that will give aspiring (read: struggling) designers (who've been in the biz five years or less) some cash and a mentorship program. It's really just a big competition where only one designer will "win" and get to show their collection on LG's official runway.

Thing is, we already have a program like this (Toronto Fashion Incubator's New Labels competition), so why not pool resources and create something bigger so more designers can show. Just saying. Remember when a press release would do the trick for something like this?

2. Canadian twins (not D-Squared) are in town to show off the new Templar Hotel - and their new collection
Chip and Pepper, the Canadian bros once known for their luxe denim line, are back in town with new wares on offer. Better yet, they're pulling out all the stops to make sure we notice. Like Mark Fast and Arthur Mendonca before them, the duo will hold a cocktail at the so-new-it-may-not-be-ready Templar Hotel on Adelaide. Even more apropos, Chip and Pep's new thing is all about beachwear and easy-breezy Cali living. Lucky for them, Toronto fashion queens are obsessed with Echo Beach, the city's newest concert venue, which means a perfect excuse to wear designer board shorts (sorry, Billabong!). Now, can a designer please do something in an unfinished penthouse at the Shangri-La one of these summer days?

3. Meet Alice in Wonderland
June 4 saw me don my Saturday best for the opening night of the National Ballet of Canada's newest production, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It's also the show's North American premiere, and didn't disappoint one bit. The turnouts and pliĂŠs were one thing, but the real draw for this production is the costume and set design by genius jack-of-all-crafts Bob Crowley, with intricate transitions and special effects - the works. The Globe's Paula Citron was spot-on when she said, "In short, ballet meets Broadway." Trust me, that's a compliment. In other words, choreographer Christopher Wheeldon takes Canadian ballet in an exciting new direction. And just so we're clear, the star of the show isn't Alice, it's the Queen of Hearts played by Black Swan-wicked Greta Hodgkinson. From June 4 to 12, and June 23 to 25.

4. Shop 'til you drop because that's all there is to do this week
Head over to the Unknown Legends Pop Up Sale for some of the city's best vintage (and more) from some of the city's top scouts, including LAB Consignment's Lauren Bakerman. It starts tomorrow and runs until June 19. And if you still want more, check out Carlie Wong's massive sample sale happening until Wednesday (June 8). The Project Runway Canada alum is offering deep discounts of up to 80 per cent on overstock and sample pieces from past and current collections.

5. Talk of Twitter: Bonnaroo Bound
June 9 marks start of the dirty South's Bonnaroo Arts & Music festival in Manchester, Tennessee. Of course, everyone wants to know: who's in and who's jealous? Some of the city's fash editors, music brains and everyone in between will make the 14-hour trek for Arcade Fire, booze and, of course, some way to call it all work. When they're back, expect tons of street style reports, 'exclusive' interviews and a renewed summer obsession with all things festival after a short, post-Coachella break. I'll be there, too. Working. On my tan. If you want to stalk some brilliant (and sizzling) Toronto chicks that'll be there (with their all-access passes, Twitpics and quirky reportage), follow her, her and her on Twitter.

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