Vancouver: Designers on Designers

Photography by Darryl Humphrey
Photography by Darryl Humphrey

For my last entry as a FASHION reporter, I couldn’t think of a story that captures the spirit of the Vancouver fashion industry better than this one. It’s the brainchild of photographer Darryl Humphrey (, who, during his time in the trade, has worked with some of the city’s finest local designers. Humphrey began to notice that, in passing, they would often comment on each other’s work and speak with the highest of respect for one another. But with their busy schedules, they rarely had the chance to meet themselves.

With the assistance of Shallom Johnson, editor of Stylefinds, Humphrey put together an event that would offer these designers the opportunity to interact socially and creatively. They found a penthouse suite overlooking Gastown and on July 13, played host to a guest list that included Carlie Wong, RozeMerie Cuevas of Jacqueline Conoir Collection, Melissa Ferreira, Melanie Talkington, Elsa Corsi of Jeweliette, Heather Mandin of Parts by Heather, and Natalie Meyer of Sienna Ray & Co. and Lark boutique owner Veronika Baspaly. The evening, dubbed Designers on Designers, included champagne and nibblies, and a sultry jazz performance by the Jackee Guillou Trio.

But there was another twist: The designers had to arrive wearing Canadian-designed clothing and bring some items from their latest collections, which they would use to style their fellow creators. After having their hair and make-up done like the models they often dress, they posed for Humphrey’s lens.

This event epitomizes the direction Vancouver is taking right now. In the past, our creatives have always competed with one another, or dispersed to bigger and “better” cities. But today, deciding to work in Vancouver doesn’t have to come with any compromise. Vancouverites are realizing that it is far more beneficial, for the city as a whole, to collaborate with one another and celebrate each other’s accomplishments. We are asking the world take notice.