Thursday, June 13, 2013


Press Release

Fashion & Design Festival - 13th Edition

Photo courtesy of FDF

Montreal, June 13, 2013 – Today, the Fashion & Design Festival (FDF) outdoor casting call took place at Place Ville Marie’s Esplanade and drew in over 300 professional models. At the event, the FDF revealed its programming and announced that Maybelline New York will be joining as an official beauty partner for the Festival. The FDF is pleased to welcome such a prestigious brand and major asset to this event that, for four days and nights, will transform McGill College Avenue into a mecca of beauty, design, music and shopping for over 550,000 festival-goers.

“For the 13th edition, we have brought together various movers and shakers from all horizons," said Chantal Durivage, Co‑President of Groupe Sensation Mode, the group behind the festival. "With Maybelline as our new beauty partner, internationally renowned artist Jean-Charles de Castelbajac as honorary chair, Geneviève Borne as our spokesperson, the participation of over 60 artists and designers, and hundreds of clothing lines, the FDF 2013 promises to make a huge splash.”

Photo credits: Group Sensation Mode (Production) / Peter Morneau (Photographer) 


The FDF has become an exceptional gathering that brings together an astonishing number of concepts. Over 50 runway shows and presentations will take place throughout the event including: fashion, music, inspiring collections, colourful collectives, special events, playful and original designs… all in a festive downtown ambiance that is very unique in North America.

The FDF promises to be a dazzling event thanks in part to the multidisciplinary stamp put on it by the legendary Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, who will host a number of extraordinary activities, including Fantômes, a fabulous artistic performance – part runway show and part performance – featuring models and dancers wearing eye-catching caftans performing to live music from Parisian DJ Mr Nô and his VJ Florian. Also on the program from the French creator, is the exhibition Main gauche, a book signing session for Des anges dans la ville, an urban art performance and the Cool heure et happy culture conference.

Photo courtesy of FDF (Click to enlarge)

Other ground-breaking events from five complementary worlds include the following:

Fashion world
  • The incredible High Heel Race, as entertaining as it is acrobatic, during which some 50 participants perched on shoes of dizzying heights will perform extraordinary feats of balance to raise money for the non-profit organization Le Chaînon. Let’s not forget that the first edition was won by... a man!
  • For the first time this year, a vintage fashion show to mark Le Chaînon’s 80th birthday will take place. A number of stars involved with Le Chaînon will strut around in – fittingly – used clothes in support of the organization.
  • The FDF will host an unusual runway show called Mutations, a first production for FDF spokesperson Geneviève Borne.
  • Another first: the À la Grace Kelly runway show, presented by Casino de Montréal. Ten finalists will wear their finest attire inspired by the legendary American actress as part of the McCord Museum’s Facebook competition.

Fashion & Design Festival 2012 (Photo by Agnieszka Stalkoper)

  • The Highlight on MFW F/W 13 runway show, presented in collaboration with Clin d’œil magazine, will also bring together a number of celebrities.
  • Equally fascinating, the Diverse Body Image runway show will showcase models with a variety of body types.
  • D.Y.D.H. Productions will give an overview of the Quebec fashion scene and host a colourful runway show to pay tribute to gay, lesbian and transgender diversity.
  • Also back this year is 5 bloggers, 5 looks, a show in which five Montreal bloggers will each present a selection that reflects their individuality, character and style.

Beauty world
  • In partnership with Redken, Maybelline New York will present the Open Backstage and the Beauty Bar, which will offer visitors free makeup and hairstyling touch-ups.

Journal MÉTRO/Collège Lasalle (Photo by Agnieszka Stalkoper)

Design world
  • This year the On Public Benches design competition will return, to invite Montreal designers to take a fresh look at a symbol that is emblematic of the city of Montreal: the park bench. Five offerings chosen by a selection committee will be presented on site, and festival-goers will have the opportunity to vote for the bench they would like to see in their city though Instagram using the hashtag #bancspublic.
  •  This year, the INBOX Design containers will offer festival-goers a light-hearted and colourful experience giving them an opportunity to play with the most striking innovations in industrial design. Under the artistic direction of Julien Vallée and Eve Duhamel (Royal Bandit), INBOX Design will showcase Canadian design objects in settings inspired by play.

Shopping world
  • Some ten boutiques in downtown Montreal will be offering fashion advice, gifts, beauty touch-ups and discounts. 
  • Pop-up boutiques between Sainte-Catherine and Cathcart Streets will be set up and will offer a golden opportunity to make some exclusive discoveries, from Quebec designers in particular.

Photo courtesy of FDF (Click to enlarge)

Music world
  • In collaboration with ELLE QUÉBECIce Cream, Sweet Lemonade will bring together three designers (Pedram Karimi, Barilà and UNTTLD) and three emerging Montreal musical groups (UN, Beverlay and Jef Barbara) on a sunny afternoon.
  • The marriage between fashion and music will also be celebrated at a runway show featuring the performance and the music of Random Recipe.
  • Festival-goers will also have the opportunity to discover Rock ‘N’ Couture, presented in collaboration with Lisbon Lux Records, featuring Le Couleur, Ryan and DJs Heidy Pinet and French Fox, and Quebec stars who will play every evening in the DJ booth from 5 to 6 p.m.

Photo courtesy of FDF (Click to enlarge)

About the Fashion & Design Festival

The Fashion & Design Festival is an annual celebration of creativity held in downtown Montréal. This unique event offers a varied program featuring fashion shows, multidisciplinary shows, live art installations, musical performances and real-time design. Over four days and four nights, close to 50 shows will be presented, featuring renowned Canadian designers and leading names in international fashion. Makeup artists, hairdressers, stylists, models and musicians will all contribute to the ambience. A authentic platform of fashion, design, music and shopping trends, this event, created and produced by Groupe Sensation Mode, is the biggest of its kind in North America. Please visit for more information.

Photo courtesy of FDF (Click to enlarge)

About Groupe Sensation Mode (GSM)

Following a decade marked by a myriad of activities, Groupe Sensation Mode continues to produce and present major fashion events in Canada and around the world. Known for its prestigious annual events such as Montreal Fashion Week and the Fashion & Design Festival, GSM has also created unique concepts such as the Fashion Theatre (on stages in Berlin, Tokyo, New York and London) and the Fashion & Opera Runway Show in Los Angeles. For the past 12 years, the innovative events organized by Groupe Sensation Mode have served as a brand, featuring the creativity and talent of designers. Thanks to partnerships established in a number of fashion capitals including Paris, Berlin and Tokyo, Groupe Sensation Mode is proud of its leadership position among the top.
Source: Torchia Communications

View last year's highlights:

*Montreal Fashion & Design Festival takes place from 31 July - 3 August 2013

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