I’ve always been drawn to vintage fashion because I find that the fabrics and the construction of the garments are so much better. It seems like there used to be no such thing as “fast fashion” and that pieces were made to last. Sadly, today it feels like many contemporary designers and lines have shied away from this more traditional model of production. I get so excited to discover designers who are not only incredibly talented but are approaching the design and production of their lines with this attention to quality. One such designer that I’ve come to absolutely adore not only for her talent but her mindfulness, is Eliza Faulkner. With her eponymous line, she has developed a well deserved reputation for wonderfully constructed pieces in beautiful fabrics. Having studied at the prestigious Central Saint Martins and interned with Erdem, Roland Mouret, and Zandra Rhodes, she brings a serious refinement and skill to her work. Beautifully feminine, yet with a mix modernity, her pieces are an almost impossible mix of the classic and the contemporary. Bows tend to make an appearance from season to season in her collections, but with her keen eye, they never veer into the saccharine. She also plays with proportion beautifully, counterbalancing bold ruffled or bloused sleeves with sleek and elegant straight lines. Another aspect of the line that I really love is that not only is it produced in Canada, it’s also proudly designed and manufactured in Montreal in an ethical manner. Having recently picked up a gorgeous black linen dress with the most exquisite and delightfully dramatic neck line, I count myself lucky to not only be a admirer of Eliza’s work, but a client as well.
My gushing aside, please enjoy this exclusive interview she granted me and happy shopping! Lucky for you, in anticipation of Spring/Summer 2019 being released soon, she’s currently offering up to 50% off of select styles.
What inspired you to start your line?
It was something I always wanted to do, and when I couldn’t find a design job here in Canada, I just decided to go for it.
Where do you find inspiration for your collections?
Usually I’m thinking about pieces that I want to wear or that my friends want to wear. I’m always looking at art, historical references, and (of course) Instagram so I reference from those sources too.
Who is the Eliza Faulkner client?
She embraces a very feminine style and loves colour. She’s not afraid to be bold and to stand out a bit – but she also wants to feel comfortable and at ease in her clothes.
As a female entrepreneur and designer, your success is a wonderful inspiration and must have come with significant hard work. Is there a piece of advice you received before or when you started your line that you found particularly useful or helpful?
I read somewhere that 99% of advice is projection and I think about that a lot. Often the things I’m telling other friends or colleagues to do are the very things I need to do for myself or my own business. It’s important to notice what you’re preaching and apply that to your own life/business.
What pieces from your line are an absolute must-have for Fall/Winter?
The Tallulah dress is one my favourites as it’s so easy to wear and layer. I also love the Pia skirt and Sophie sweat-suit combo. They’re made out of jogging fleece (which sweatpants are made from) but are much more sophisticated and you could actually wear the whole look to work or a party.
As a Canadian designer creating and producing here in Canada, do you find that there’s anything that sets the market apart or makes it different from elsewhere?
There isn’t a huge Canadian fashion ‘scene’ in Canada so the community is really small and tight-knit. I think Montreal in particular has a thriving design scene and we all share our struggles and achievements with each other – I think that’s what makes it unique and special.
Beyond being beautiful, your pieces are made here in Montreal in an “ethical manner” and that was something that really caught my eye personally. What does this mean and why do you think that it’s an important distinction to make?
All of our clothes (excluding fabric) are designed and manufactured in Montreal. It’s important for me to know who made the clothes I’m wearing and also it gives us a more control over the quality of the production.
What excites you about the fashion world right now?
I’m excited to see innovations in fabric and recycling in the fashion industry. Designers are getting more creative with how they reuse and recycle things and that is only going to grow. I really hope someone will figure out how to recycle fabrics. In the meantime I’m really into finding good dead-stock fabrics to work with and trying to figure out a more sustainable way of making clothes.
Photography: Arin Gintwot