TBT: That time I held the Montreal + Fashion Week

Throwback Tuesday: on that day, three years ago, I was running everywhere like a headless chicken. I ran between models, designers, vendors, make up artists, stage managers, director of the venue and the media team we hired to make sure everything was OK to go..

Rose Aux Joues Photographie

That wonderful adventure started about four years ago, when I decided that I wanted to have the first Plus Size Fashion Week in Montreal. 
I was ready to work, I had my best friend beside me and I thought we could rule the world. It was very naive of me, but still. I wanted to try.

Robert Skuja Photography

So for a whole year, Nadine and I worked hard on this. We found a venue, approached designers for the fashion show, vendors for the selling booths, sponsors… I never thought it would be so hard to find sponsors, but we got it, thanks to Nadine’s reseach talent. 

Robert Skuja Photography

An American brand heard of the event and reached out to us to be part of it. I was stunned! And to be sure to be part of the show, the brand told us that they could bring the face of the brand, plus model Rosie Mercado to walk amongst the models for them!!! I think I cried when I saw their email. I knew that if Rosie Mercado was on board, the medias would finally take the Montreal + Fashion Week seriously and cover the event!

Robert Skuja Photography

Then, my favorite part arrived: model casting!! We traveled to Quebec city, Toronto and finally came back to Montreal to find the best models for the runway show. We saw gorgeous plus size ladies everywhere. It was hard to choose. We wanted to showcase models from sizes 14 to 24, with different looks and ethnicities. We finally were able to pick the final 25 who would walk for us, about 3 months before the show.
Creating an event like the Montreal + Fashion Week was harder than I thought. During the last 2 months prior to the show, I was a mess. I was so stressed, last minute things kept piling up, I had to cut a lot of things I wanted for the show because the budget was way too tight.. It was hard because I didn’t have a big team with me on this, we were two people working on the project full time, ON TOP OF our regular 9 to 5 jobs!
I was hard indeed, but the Montreal + Fashion Week is also the project I’m the most proud of. We created something and people loved it. 
From this day, I still get messages from people asking when will be the next edition and all, but to be honest, I don’t know. 
What I DO know, is that we won’t do it alone again. We will need a huge team to work on finding sponsors, designers, vendors, the runway show, the lighting, the music, the make up, the styling, the decor….. 
A project like this bring the spotlight on many people. Sometimes it brings amazing opportunities, sometimes it helps you to grow your business..
Just to name a few, one of our models (the lovely Andrée-Anne) walked for Penningtons at the Montreal + Fashion Week. The brand loved her so much, that their sent her to Milan to scan her body and become the new store mannequins!
Another Montreal’s own, the beautiful Romy is now a top 10 model to be featured on the cover of Maxim Magazine. Go vote for her HERE!

Photo: Instagram Romy_Lea

Toronto’s Sarah Taylor inspired us all with her journey. She took the stage and opened up in front of many people three years ago, and she continues to grow. Now, she is a personnal trainor and owner of Fitness by Sarah Taylor.

Photo: Instagram SarahTaylorsJourney

I didn’t really know Edith at the time (the Plus Size BackPacker) but she became a good friend, and she is sooooo inspiring. She is a feminist, an activist and an amazing public speaker. I think you should follow her HERE.

Photo: Instagram Bernier_Edith

If you want to know a little bit more about who I am and what I did, click here.

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