Zac Posen Comes Home in the House of Z

Fresh off Monday’s Met Gala date with Katie Holmes, Zac Posen touched down in Toronto for the international premiere of House of Z, an intimate documentary that charts his rapid rise to fame.

Katie Holmes 2017 Met Gala | photo care of Zac Posen

At 37, Zac Posen is already a legendary fashion designer, renown for artisanal craftsmanship. Celebrities like Uma Thurman, Sarah Jessica Parker and Natalie Portman flock to his atelier for red carpet wow. House of Z is a generous peek inside Zac’s well connected, Manhattan upbringing and a family that rallies behind his early success.

As a 20-year old Central Saint Martins drop out, Zac already had enviable media buzz but no business. In 2001 Zac’s older sister Alexandra and their mother (a former corporate lawyer) join forces to help him launch his design studio out of the family’s living room. The media darling struggles to exceed the fashion industry’s high expectations while supporting his family. It’s a familiar “fake it until you make it” success story, but one that nearly backfired.

The question this film seems to ask is, what happens when the business outgrows family?

Looking at his career now – successful designer of his namesake label, creative director for Brooks Brothers Womens, judge on Project Runway – it’s hard to imagine the pressure nearly unraveled him. We’ve seen mega talents get sidelined by success before. The question this film seems to ask is, what happens when business outgrows family?

Some of movie’s best moments are interviews with the celebrity set who play a major role in Zac’s rise to fame. Naomi Campbell, Sean “P Diddy” Combs and Claire Danes are just a few of the bold face names to make a cameo.

Canadian Connection

It’s no surprise they selected Toronto’s Hot Docs Festival for House of Z’s international premiere. The documentary was written, filmed and produced by Sandy Chronopoulos, a Toronto broadcast news producer at Rogers Television. As well, fashion philanthropist Suzanne Rogers serves as an executive producer on the film.


F-listed Auction is Live

 Happy birthday to me! For the next ten days explore F-listed, the first online auction of its kind. Browse and bid on fashionable goods donated by Canadian designers, retailers, tastemakers and celebrities across Canada. 

New items will be added throughout the week, so check back frequently. Are you on the mailing list? We’ll notify you when new items go live. Sign up here.

Proceeds help support Dress for Success Toronto, a cause I feel passionately about because we all deserve to look and feel our best. Dress for Success not only outfits disadvantaged women in professional attire, it helps them enter the professional world with mentoring
and job interview training. It’s a volunteer organization with outlets all over North America.

For more on F-listed, click here. Shop, browse and bid now, click here!

Contest: Art of Fashion VIP Style

You know it’s fall when people are talking Nuit Blanche. This Saturday, October 1st the all-night contemporary art event returns to Toronto streets and galleries. Why not start your evening off with some VIP treatment at the Art of Fashion event?
At the Art of Fashion, ten emerging Canadian designers bring their collections to life in an exhibit space and through a fashion show where they compete for 2 awards: Most Promising Designer is decided by an industry judging panel, and Best Exhibit is voted by the public. You can also shop the Art of Fashion’s designer boutique featuring original works by apparel and accessories designers.
Win a pair of tickets to the Art of Fashion’s VIP reception (6pm – 7pm) at the Pantages Hotel featuring complimentary food and beverages. Send an email to with ART OF FASHION in the subject line by midnight on September 27th for your chance to win. Winners will be contacted via email and confirmed by September 29th.

Fashion Mission Montreal: Next Stop, Musee des Beaux Arts

The Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at the Musee des Beaux Arts was the raison d’etre for my Montreal visit. After seeing the McQueen exhibit in New York (opening day, no queue!) I was adamant about catching JPG during its short run (through October 2, 2011) so close to home. 

This tribute to the l’enfant terrible of fashion begins with a most impressive display of nearly live mannequins. Faces of real people are projected and animated onto mannequin heads for an effect that is sometimes surprising and mildly disturbing.  (More on the mannequins here.) Aside from Gaultier’s work itself – which includes 130 emsembles, sketches, photographs and films – they are the most riveting part of the exhibition.

I’ve always been a fan of Gaultier’s punk sensibilities, and have closely followed him since his pointy corsets for Madonna’s Blond Ambition Tour (saw that too!). In today’s world I find his point of view and expression against oppression more than relevant – I find it necessary.

Top hat made of hair
Hat designed from vintage hair dryer