The city’s largest multi-arts fashion festival, Fashion Art Toronto (FAT), is back. After having to postpone their annual event in April, FAT is introducing a Virtual Runway Show Series. Virtual runway presentations will be broadcasted live on FAT’s Instagram every Monday and Friday evening throughout the summer. Our Faces of FAT series will take a deeper look at the designers behind the collections and their stories. 

Designer: Micheline Wedderburn, Meesh

Website: meesh.to

Instagram@michespinning

Show time: Friday, June 26 @ 8:00 p.m. EST

SC: Tell us a bit about yourself. 

MW: I was born in Jamaica and my family came to Toronto, Canada when I was four years old. I attended C.W. Jefferies, an arts high school. I went on to get my BA from York University and my teaching BA Ed from University of Toronto. I have three children Aidan, Sawyer and Mannix. I lived in California for six years where I opened a spinning gym. I went on to open my business Quad Spin in 2002. Art has always been a passion.

SC: What inspires you?

MW: I love the colours that appear in nature. I’ve always been a fan of sustainability, re-purposing and deconstructing clothes.  My mother was the most fashionable woman and her style remains my inspiration.  I wanted to dedicate my collection to her.

SC: Tell us the story behind this collection.

MW: My original collection was full of colourful painted leather. With the cancellation and the global pandemic causing lock down, I began tie dying and cropping men’s shirts during isolation. I used tule to create a nude illusion and a opportunity to highlight some of my painted patches, shoes and boom boxes. All pieces were donated or found vintage.

SC: Who or what has been a strong influence on you throughout the course of your life?

MW: My mother Joan because she was stylish and artistic. She enrolled me in classes and always encouraged me. My high school experience at C.W. Jefferies had a great effect on me. I was taught by professional artists and exposed to all forms of artistic disciplines: sculpture, pottery, live nude drawing. We did art everyday. DSquared Dean and Dan Caten were my classmates!

SC: What’s one piece of advice you would give to a designer that’s just starting out? 

MW: I would encourage sustainability. Shop consignment and don’t be afraid to cut something  up or reinvent to make art wearable.

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