On March 26, the International School of Fashion, Arts and Design at LaSalle College brought together members of the fashion world who tend to defy the rules for its panel entitled “Fashion Disruptors”.
Moderated by Debbie Zakaib, Executive Director at mmode, this bilingual discussion offered an insight into the eccentric world of the creators of Fecal Matter, stylist and designer Rosalie R. Lemay, and Editor-in-Chief of THEFINEPRINT magazine Estelle Gervais.
The controversial duo behind the Fecal Matter brand (also known as Matières fécales) consists of alumni Hannah Rose Dalton and Steve Raj Bhaskaran. Recently featured in Vogue, among others, the singular style of their multidisciplinary brand is bound to leave an impression.
Throughout the discussion, they revealed their highly thought out creative approach based on a meditation on human nature and society. They also discussed the origins of Fecal Matter, conceived during their time as Fashion Design students at LaSalle College.
It was here that the entire project fell into place: the types of clothing they would go on to create, their price ranges, marketing, etc. “Our marketing classes at LaSalle College really helped us a lot. We’ve always managed to finance our projects ourselves.”
Fiercely opposed to fast fashion, the pair champions a more critical perspective on consumer culture.
After several years tailoring her own outfits and garments by hand, Rosalie R. Lemay established Pretend Play, a brand that encompasses her passion for slow fashion, DIY punk aesthetics, club culture, avant-garde, and streetwear.
Dressing the likes of Hubert Lenoir, La Bronze, Cœur de Pirate, and Jay du Temple, the ever-theatrical Rosalie shatters social norms by way of her unique designs made from vintage pieces. Starting with a blank canvas? No thanks! In her eyes, a piece with its own story to tell is a far richer source of creativity.
Nonetheless, making yourself understood in this part of the world can be harder than it sounds: “In Quebec, people are still happy to be comfortable. They are afraid to step outside their comfort zone. ”
“We’ve developed our own complex here: you have to be known abroad in order to be recognized by your peers at home,” claims Estelle Gervais.
Estelle is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of THEFINEPRINT, a fashion and art magazine that addresses cultural and societal subjects from a critical angle. Founded in 2015, it has reached such a level of success that it is now distributed in more than ten countries worldwide. A fantastic achievement for someone whose penchant for a “dying” medium has not always been taken seriously.
“Sometimes it pays to become friends with your teachers!” says Estelle, who has closely collaborated with Milan Tanedjikov, a teacher from her student days at LaSalle College.
Each in their own way, through the art form of fashion, these four individuals stand in defiance of what is socially acceptable. They provoke, spark conversation, and make people think— living proof that this industry will forever continue to evolve!