Photography by Frank And Oak.

Frank And Oak founders among the most “optimistic” influencers in fashion

Five Canadian made the BoF 500 list of this year's leading creatives and forward thinkers

The Business of Fashion’s BoF 500 list for 2018 was published yesterday and revealed that Canadians Ethan Song and Hicham Ratnani of Frank And Oak have been selected for the second year in a row.

Based on nominations from current BoF members, data analysis and research, the BoF 500 is the ultimate guide to the names that are shaping today’s $2.4 trillion fashion industry.

This year, three new Canadian names were added to this list including videographer Bardia Zeinali, known for his work with singer Troye Sivan, chief executive of SMCP Daniel Lalonde, and Stephanie Phair, chair of the British Fashion Council.

Six years after Frank And Oak was founded in 2012 as a menswear line with an ethical view on the future, the brand expanded to include womenswear and is sold in 22 boutique stores across Canada.

“We made it!”, exclaimed an excited tweet from the company, shortly after the BoF 500 list was unveiled. Though most of the enthusiasm coming from Frank And Oak’s social media nowadays is about opening more stores, recent tweets show that the brand truly takes pride in its Canadian design roots.

For example, the company’s Minimal collection is made from organic and recycled fibres and water-efficient Hydroless denim in an effort to reduce their carbon footprint by improving the sustainability of their products and processes. An environmental initiative that would align with fellow BoF 500’s like Eco Age, a sustainable brand consultancy that works with the likes of Gucci, ERDEM and Chopard.

Last night, some of the industry’s top designers, executives, editors, entrepreneurs, models and activists all gathered at the Gala dinner at 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge where Pierre-Yves Roussel, special advisor at LVMH, said “if you’re not optimistic, you shouldn’t be in fashion.” Nice to hear of some good news in the industry.