Beyond serving as one of the United States' closest longtime allies, Canada also boasts a burgeoning fashion scene, with many of the country's designers and brands already quite popular among D.C. residents.
And the scope of their success was well represented on Friday evening, as the Embassy of Canada
in Washington held its inaugural Fashion Soiree inside the building's 'Canada Room' and theatre lobby.
Casting a wide net across some of the country's more fashionably minded companies and citizenry, the runway show included a diverse group of participants, including everyone from multinational store chains to rising independent designers.
Perhaps the most recognizable brands that took to the catwalk at the event were technical athletic apparel leader lululemon
and performance footwear manufacturer Pajar
But also well represented were Canada's homegrown independent labels, such as Greta Constantine
, Christopher Bates
, Pink Tartan
, Nella Bella
, Brimble & Clark
, Betina Lou
, MATT & NAT
, Michael Kaye Couture
, and John Fluevog
, among others.
Who better to model such stylish symbols of Canadian craftsmanship than the Embassy's own staffers? Joining them on the runway during the fashion show were more than a dozen additional area models, including evening emcee Kelly Collis
of 94.7 Fresh FM
fame and host Chris Plunkett
(who also just happens to serve as the Embassy's spokesman).
Still, the trendiest characteristic of Friday's Fashion Soiree had to be its charitable component, with proceeds from the event benefiting the United Way
-- an organization charged with a mission to mobilize "the caring power of communities around the world to advance the common good."
A prize-laden silent auction served as the primary fundraising mechanism for the occasion and boasted such swanky items as an overnight weekend stay at the Fairmont Washington
, airline tickets, and even an Argo
movie poster signed by the cast and Canadian Ambassador.