Monday, November 30, 2009

Ingenue Fashion House

Walking into this sleek Broadway boutique, I was instantly charmed. Everywhere I looked, there were perfectly chosen, perfectly simple garments from local and Canadian designers. I was in a fashionista's playground and there was no way I wasn't going to play so I started loading up with delectable goodies to try on.
Manager Jen Gagne was her usual adorable and charming self, chatting with me while helping to outfit another customer for her fabulous birthday dinner. While I browsed, I was blown away at the awesome selection: buttery leather belts from Erin Templeton, adorable frocks from dace, lily+jae and Oyuna (the new line from the creators of KBO Clothing), and gorgeous tailored skirts and jackets from Ingenue's ethically produced house line. I grabbed a little bit of everything and headed to the fitting rooms.
Excuse the not-so-cute pictures I took in the mirror... there's a reason I'm a writer and not a photographer:

This is me looking a little embarrassed to be taking a picture of myself, but nonetheless rocking an adorable navy dress by Oyuna and a crocheted shrug by Surely One designs. I had the pleasure of meeting the designer of Surely One, a sweet and elegantly chic lady by the name of Shirley. She hand knits and crochets all the shrugs and sweet beret hats that Ingenue carries and her work is only available there. I fell in love with the soft cover-up and instantly pictured it with a shiny cocktail dress, adding texture and a bit of whimsy.

And this beauty of an asymmetrical blazer was what ultimately came home with me. It's part of Ingenue's newest project: partnering with 15 tailors in Vietnam who create the perfectly tailored pieces for Ingenue's house line. Because the group is small and Ingenue works with them directly, not only is the quality fabulous, but the tailors get to set their own rates and working hours. The most exciting thing about this partnership is that Ingenue is offering a custom workwear service. All you have to do is drop by, get measured and pick out your preferred styles, colours and fabrications and soon you'll have workwear tailored to your body. As a woman who suffers from the double indignity of gaping buttons on shirts and gaping waistbands on skirts and trousers (most of the time, I love my hourglass figure, but trying on workwear is not one of them), I am maybe a little over-excited by the prospect of custom clothing. Ingenue is the only shop in Vancouver that offers this service.

Overall, I leave Ingenue and walk into the misty Vancouver evening grinning like a fool. The combination of Jen's sweetly sincere compliments (seriously, she is so nice) and finding a great piece that fits me like a glove is heady and as I head downtown to meet with my girlfriends, I'm already scheming where to stash the jacket I'm wearing because my new blazer is far superior.

Visit Ingenue Fashion House at 2821 W. Broadway.


lisa said...

One of my coworkers recommended this store to me! I'll have to check it out.

womens dresses said...

Nice outfits! I really like the blazer in the 2nd photo