As a professed lover, scholar, and lifetime addict of fashion, I know great style when I see it. Having had the pleasure of touring the spectacle that was 2014’s Interior Design Show at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, I had not really entered the situation expecting to see great fashion. Perhaps I had pre-judged.
Besides the extravagant, almost-cut-throat style seen at the opening night cocktail party (featuring savoury food and drinks from Cheeseworks, El Catrin, Pure Spirits, and Estiatorio Volos, among others), there was one exhibit in the show that truly exuded Fashion with a capital “F” and that was Korhani Home.
Founded over a century ago, Korhani Home produces sophisticatedly stylish Canadian-made, Ecologo-certified pieces that are chic yet affordable. Chief Designer and Creative Director Kirsten Korhani has long been aware of the relationship between decor and sartorial style, stating, “Home fashion was always the step-sister or step-daughter to fashion. I noticed people who like fashion in their wardrobe like fashion in their homes as well. You want to be trendy and seasonal. In the summer you want to wear something colourful and then you want to do the same with your house. That’s the reason I got involved. I wanted to make home fashion very fashionable.” Having showcased Korhani Home on the runways of World MasterCard Fashion Week Toronto and Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin, Kirsten decided to bring her brand to the Interior Design Show to connect with a larger audience via a truly experiential, interactive exhibit.
Of her exhibit, Kirsten states that her aim was to, “create an exhibition with our home collections that has that interactive feel of our runway shows and bring that to a larger audience who wouldn’t normally get a chance to experience our fashion shows.” The result was a multimedia adventure featuring state-of-the-art projection technology used to bring mannequins to life so that they could guide you through Korhani’s creative process and history. The exhibit is broken down into three thematic sections: the first is falling down the rabbit hole into a “Korhani in Wonderland” tableau (Mad Hatter and company included.) This area featured indoor and outdoor carpets reinvented into couture pieces as seen on the “Rug Runway” at World MasterCard Fashion Week. The second space featured a Cuban libre motif, highlighting all the glamour, elegance, and eccentricity of 1950s Havana through mannequins dressed in the colourful Korhani Veranda Rug Collection. The last leg of the journey was inspired by Marie-Antoinette’s Versailles, with sophisticated and romantic couture designs highlighting the Korhani Terrace Rug Collection. Just before we exited the exhibit, we were greeted by a mannequin of Kirsten Korhani herself explaining things a little more and leading us into the pop-up shop.
Said pop-up shop had a variety of Korhani Home products, all for under $100. Everything was naturally impeccable and how much I went home with is a secret known only between God, MasterCard, and myself. Overall, the exhibit truly did feel like home fashion had met sartorial fashion. Korhani Home created a space that was undeniably artistic in the way that it provoked thought, produced a novel experience, and blurred the lines between two forms of design normally kept decidedly separate. All I can say is that Kirsten Korhani brought the Interior Design Show #fashion meets #function meets #fabulous and I sincerely hope to see her at World MasterCard Fashion Week in a month.