February 17, 2010

From the Inside of the Opening Ceremony: a fashion view at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics


Ravi Bansal, beauty queen, local plumbing magnate (really, not a joke), and Olympic standard bearer for Moldava (found between Russia and Romania but after Mexico during the march of nations) gives us the inside skinny on the opening ceremony.

What were you wearing?
I was wearing the outfit from Joe Fresh. It was a white skirt out of cotton. On top, a nice comfortable t-shirt. Like a two-piece slip, together. What you saw on television was a wrap-around dress jacket. A ski style with quilting on the inside.

It had a nice white leather belt to make a more hourglass shape. A very clean look.

Any favourites?

The shoes were cutest. They looked like little white ice skates. Just a small block with a little bit of fur on the top. I’ll never wear them again but they were cute. They were the icing on the cake.

I assumed all the athletes and bearer must have been sweating during
the athletes’ march...

No. It was quite cool while were waiting. It was such a great adrenaline rush you didn’t notice but during rehearsal it was warmer. I assume it was warmer with 60 000 in the stands but I was so excited I didn’t notice and no one else noticed.

Biggest fashion moment for the Opening?
I thought UK’s and Italy’s outfits were far the best.

What did they do right?
UK was adorable. They had a little Hogwarts theme going on. Very prep school. Very fashionable. Italy had beautiful wool blazers with gorgeous tan pants. They were definitely something you could wear again. Another highlight, Nelly Furtado’s dress. Gorgeous.

What’s next for you?
The closing ceremonies.

Any hints about what we should expect?
It’s going to be very exciting.

No Led Zeppelin?
I don’t know anything at all. It’s kept secret from us.

February 15, 2010

Fashion designer Yumi Eto's golden moment tonight at Olympic Victory Ceremony



Originally airing on CBC Radio One's On The Coast with Stephen Quinn, my main man.

Few designers have their own Olympic moment, but for Yumi Eto and the design team at Aritzia it has arrived.

Tonight, the gold medal for Canadian freestyle mogulist Alexandre Bilodeau will be presented at BC Place. And while he will be decked out in gear by HBC, the sophisticated clothes worn by the athlete escorts and the medal and flower bearers will be wearing Eto et al.

The Heritage Sweater is the standard look for presentations in Vancouver, while a black ski coat with a faint plaid and a flaring skirt is the choice for Whistler's outdoor Victory Ceremonies.

There was much excitement at the office during the interview. The Aritzia squad had marching orders to be backstage at BC Place for Bilodeau's big moment.

Their job will be to make the ceremony garb looks picture perfect when thousands across the nation tune in to sing the national anthem.

Oh Canada never looked so good.

YUMI ETO on Fashion Monday tonight on CBC Radio One



At 5:45 PM on CBC Radio One, JJ Lee brings in an interview with the Fashion Designer whose work will be in the middle of a Golden Moment for Canada tonight. JJ Lee and Aritzia's Yumi Eto talking about Olympics and fashion.

Live streamed here, On The Coast.

February 11, 2010

Gold medal souvenirs for fashion-hungry Olympic visitors

Walking down Robson Street, an Olympic visitor may see the same boutiques and clothes they find at home. So, you can't blame them if they find it hard to uncover truly unique Vancouver fashion items. But we can help.

For those in search of a stylish memento of West Coast style, consider a trio that is simply solid gold:

  • Cowichan sweaters. They're already the hottest fashion items of the Olympics. HBC started offering REAL Cowichan sweaters after a snafu with its Cowichan-like take for its Olympic collection. However, finding one at The Bay Downtown might be pretty hard. But don't give up. Authentic Cowichan Knits (424 West 3rd Street, North Vancouver) has been selling them for years. Give Suzanne Nahanee a call and find out what they have in stock, 604-988-4735.



  • Grab onto Erin Templeton's medium sized leather tote. Made at her shop at 511 Carrall Street in Vancouver, her bags give a woman the same saucy swagger of its charming maker. Be warned, and this is from experience, people will invariably ask you where you bought it. Bonus, Erin keeps a nice array of vintage clothes and a line of one-of-a-kind recycled leather bags too.



  • For jeans with a vertically-integrated idea of the West Coast, you can't beat Fidelity Denim. Designed by Jason Trotzuk from his studio in Vancouver, Fidelity are made and finished in Los Angeles. You can find them at all over Vancouver at Aritzia.

  • Unofficial horning into the Olympic hype

    I am not the official fashion guy of the 2010 Olympics. But I did get to broadcast from the GE Plaza's rink at Robson Square this Monday.

    I had a chance to skate with a pair of lovely young figure skaters, Haley Adams and Samantha Wong of the Grandview Figure Skating Club.

    Plus I had a chance to interview Julie Rithaler. Rithaler, a go-to skate costume designer in the Victor Kraatz circle, has had her work hit World Championship ice.

    Click here to hear my conversation with her.

    February 2, 2010

    Latest call up for FM's dream team in the manner of Canada's hockey squad



    Consider me the Steve Yzerman of Vancouver fashion. My job: to select a fashion dream team that best represents West Coast style.

    This time I was looking for a rock solid, stay-at-home defencemen. My selection was Mountain Equipment Co-op. I spoke with Spring Harrison, senior designer.
    Listen to interview

    February 1, 2010

    Some things are best left unsaid: jeans with stretch good, talking about it, not good



    Got this from the best FB'er I know, Joan Chang. Love her links.

    Ahem. Women do want pants that stretch. Elastic waste bands, etc. They don't want the stigma.

    With this ad, there is no subtext.