Fashion Wonderland

May 17, 2011

Text by Katia Ostapets.

Photos by Valeria Safonova and Katia Ostapets.

Every guest who walked into the Darling Foundry in the Vieux Port of Montreal was warmly greeted by the co-ordinators led by Alanna Ramgoolam and Kristina McGill, who organized the Second Annual Heels & Heart charity fashion show and competition.

Titled Fashion Wonderland, an homage to Alice and her trip down the rabbit hole, the event raised over $7,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Canada. This ‘wearable art’ fashion show was a competition between 32 up-and-coming Montreal designers, who were asked to create one original look that would be their interpretation of Alice in Wonderland.

As the guests eagerly awaited the show, refreshments were provided at the cash bar and deserts were available for a voluntary monetary donation, including white wine with strawberries and the delicious Red Velvet cupcakes from Laura’s Cupcakes for a Cause.

The cocktail hour was attended by bloggers, designers, families of the contestants and Montreal’s fashion enthusiasts.

Although most were classically dressed in suits and cocktail dresses, a few stood out with their velvet bowties and trendy frames, Gucci-inspired jewel-toned attire or a decorative head band that even Blair Waldorf would have been proud of.

The location itself could not have been more appropriate, with incredibly high ceilings, dark lighting and a rustic factory-like atmosphere, contrasting the feminine garments that were showcased.

The designers were judged by a panel consisting of Canadian fashion icon Marie Saint Pierre, trendsetting menswear designer Dimitri Chris, FLARE magazine correspondent Janna Zittrer, as well as Joshua Fagan and David Archer, owners of luxury womenswear boutique JoshuaDAVID.

The chosen inspiration and its respective garment ranged from a teacup-shaped skirt, aptly named “Teatime”, and a balloon dress called “Drink Me”, to a Spartan “Male Royal Guard” and a pink-feathered gown named “Flamingos”. The most popular characters were the Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts.

Lolitta Dandoy, a blogger for, who was dressed in Helmer head to toe, felt that some of the creations stood out because “the designers didn’t just copy the movie, but took a small element and really made it their own,” as in the instance of Alexis Johnston Bénamou’s “Mad Hatter”. “You couldn’t tell right away it was the Mad Hatter,” she explained.

After a long deliberation, the judges announced that Samantha Cutler was the winner. Cutler described her piece “Wonderland” as her vision of “bringing [Alice] to life in New York” and stressed the importance of “choosing where your own Wonderland is.” Cutler was also the co-creator of the SKMtl jewelry line and said she was excited to attend the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC in September.

Cincopa WordPress plugin

FAJO’s backstage coverage

(Contact us if you would like to have the original copy of your picture.)

(Contactez-nous si vous voulez avoir l’original de votre photo.)

Cincopa WordPress plugin

FAJO’s Best Dressed gallery

(Contact us if you would like to have the original copy of your picture.)

(Contactez-nous si vous voulez avoir l’original de votre photo.)

Cincopa WordPress plugin


One Comment »

  • Daian Tang said:


    I would like to have original copies.

    can you please advise

    Thank you

    great coverage

Join In On The Conversation!

Add your comment below, trackback from your own site, or subscribe to these comments via RSS.


Recent Topics