Pictured above is the 26-year-old founder of Love Winter, Polina Roufanova, modeling the Valenki boots (pronounced va-LENG-kee), which merge traditional 300-year-old Siberian footwear design with modern styling and materials. They’re essentially a tall wool felt slipper with rubber galoshes that clip on. They’re designed to brave a cold (and slushy) Toronto winter, but then convert into versatile indoor slippers just by taking off the galoshes.
This is perhaps the perfect example of the creativity shown at Toronto’s Startup Fashion Week, a three-day long meeting point of fashion, technology and business which is ending today.
The event has featured presentations and panels on topics relating to an emerging world where technology influences fashion. It also seems like a great place to learn about trends in the areas of retail-tech, fashion-tech and wearable-tech, and presents some great networking opportunities for entrepreneurs in fashion design and digital fashion startups.
Hang Loose Media Studios (28 Logan Ave.) will be the location of the closing runway show, “The Future of Fashion”, which starts at 7pm tonight, and is followed by an afterparty. (For 50% off, use promocode: Launch50).
It features emerging designers, Maybe by Catalfo, The Wild North, Atelier Guarin, KLATT by Alanna Klatt, and VANIKA.
VANIKA, which bills itself as an independent label “rooted in a passion for biology”, is run by 16-year-old Vanessa Kiraly and seems particularly interesting, and undoubtedly represents the future of fashion.
(Photo courtesy of Shayne Gray)