TORONTO, Canada – Canadian fashion innovators, creatives and moguls alike congregated on March 9th for TFIXXX – a celebration toasting national style narratives both iconic and developing. Hosted at Waterworks, the event paid homage to Toronto Fashion Incubator’s (TFI) 30th anniversary, while simultaneously hosting the non-profit’s 25th TFI New Labels® Fashion Design Competition & Show and the opening night gala of TOM*FW founder, Jeff Rustia’s new iteration of Toronto Women’s Fashion Week (TWFW).
In true TFI fashion, there was no shortage of talent: the 2017 TFI New Labels® Competition featured five incredible designers. Claire Lemaitre-Auger, whose designs reflect an ethereal dream; Andrew Coimbra, a master of classic, masculine staples accentuating feminine undertones; Michael Zoffranieri, a craftsman boasting a chic and luxurious European sensibility; Sebastian Guarin, an artisan beautifully exploring design, innovation and textiles; and Ryan Alexander Smith, with designs embodying delicate strength designed for city dwellers with a story to tell. The designer collections illuminated the runway with 10 looks each from their debut fall 2017 collections. Although each lineup perfectly articulated their diverse sartorial capabilities, ZOFF by Michael Zoffranieri from Mississauga ultimately embodied the future of fashion to judges David Dixon, Suzanne Rogers, Jeff Rustia, Suzanne Timmins and Cameron Williamson.
“The moment my name was called was surreal,” said Michael Zoffranieri of his TFI New Labels® win. “TFI has provided me with the opportunity of a lifetime; I can only imagine where the future will take ZOFF with their ongoing guidance and support.”
Zoffranieri was awarded a prize packaged valued at over $90,000, including The $30,000 Suzanne Rogers Award for Most Promising New Label, a coveted, fully-sponsored photo shoot from FLARE, editorial features in HELLO! Canada and FLARE.com, financial services and advice from RBC and a HP Spectre Gold laptop. The ZOFF SS18 collection also hit the runway at Rustia’s next edition of Toronto Women’s Fashion Week. This is the largest prize package offered by TFI since the competition began in 1992.
“It is a landmark year for the TFI as the world’s first fashion incubator turns 30 and celebrates the silver anniversary of its TFI New Labels® Fashion Design Competition. The Toronto Fashion Incubator provides a remarkably nurturing environment for designers to learn, grow and make their mark within the Canadian fashion industry. I am proud to provide my support to so vital a program, driven by endless creativity and dynamic spirit,” said Suzanne Rogers.