For nine years, PARK founders Kara Chomistek and Jessie Li have been organizing fashion shows and shopping events that promote and champion the creative talent in Alberta. So the annual Parkshow has become a buzzy culmination of all that hard work. But this year’s Parkshow, which happened in the cavernous Yellow Warehouse space in Calgary’s hip Inglewood district, was even more special.
In addition to three days of shopping and two nights of runway presentations, there was the 30th anniversary celebrating trailblazing agency Mode Models. Under founder and president Kelly Streit’s leadership, Mode Models has helped make supers out of models Heather Marks (FASHION Magazine Summer 2017 cover star), 90s glamazon-turned-actress Tricia Helfer, and CAFA Model of the Year winner, Meghan Collison.
Streit is a legend in the industry and mentor to many creative talents in Western Canada. Internationally renowned makeup artist Hung Vanngo flew in from New York, just for the event.
“I met Kelly many years ago, when I was starting out in the business in Calgary and he was already established as a local agent,” says Vanngo. “He started letting me test his models and pushing me to build my portfolio and get experience.” Now, the global artistry ambassador for Marc Jacobs is flown all over the world to work with celebrities like Katy Perry and Selena Gomez, but he’s never forgotten his time in Calgary, and Streit’s influence on his career.
“I actually went to New York for the first time with him and that’s when the whole thing really started,” Vanngo says. “It’s always nice to come back [here]; I think it’s important that you always remember your roots.”
Paris-based Canadian Rad Hourani showed his latest, unisex collection for the first time in Alberta, with top models Kayley Chabot and Agnieszka Wichniewicz hitting the catwalk. Other weekend highlights included S.P. BADU, House of Nonie, and Vancouverite Alex S. Yu (some designers showed in-season while others showed Fall 2017). It was a festive weekend of Canadian design, and the crowd couldn’t have been happier to be there to support—and more importantly, shop—local talent.
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