Allicia Martin is the woman responsible for the “High Waist Thong.” Enough said. As the designer behind the brand Dear Frankie, Martin puts her own sexy twist on everything from women’s intimate apparel and bikinis to form-fitting dresses and harem pants. But don’t take our word for it. Just check out some of her gorgeous designs in the gallery above to see for yourself. We caught up with Martin to find out what inspires her, the men’s line she hopes to one day launch, and what she loves about Toronto.
Tell us a little about yourself: your background, experiences, a snippet about you…
Born and raised in Alberta. An only child. A Scorpio. An independent and driven individual who loves to make bikinis and undies.
What inspired you to become a designer?
I was making my own clothes to go out in, way back when in Edmonton. People were really diggin’ what I was rockin’! That gave me the confidence to get things going and I applied to Ryerson just to see if I would get in… and I got in!
What is the inspiration for the Dear Frankie lines?
I have different inspirations for different lines within Dear Frankie. For my intimates line, my inspiration comes from every woman. Every woman deserves to feel sexy and confident. That is how my High Waist Thong came to be! I wish every woman owned one and was able to feel that extra bit confidence under a sexy bodycon dress or in her work clothes. As for my swimsuit collection, I get inspired by the confident woman. The suits are made for that lady that loves to strut her sexy stuff on the beach and is proud of herself and her body. This is definitely not about physical body type or size, but for the woman who knows who she is and is proud and is a confident individual.
What are your dreams for Dear Frankie? Where would you like to see it in 5 years?
I would love Dear Frankie to be a lifestyle brand. A place where you can get all your fashion needs from intimates to day wear to swim to accessories! A ‘one stop shop’! I will (hopefully) be doing men’s underwear as well, which I’m excited about! I don’t know men’s wants and needs as well as women’s in that department, so this one is taking a bit more time. I will say asking guys what they want in a pair of underwear is really fun! Finally, I truly would love for every woman in Canada to own a High Waist Thong! Lofty goal I know, but that is how much I believe in this product. It gives just a little bit more support, which in turn, adds to the confidence. Every single woman deserves to look her best, but more importantly feel her best, and if I can help in any way I will!
Finish this sentence: I love Toronto because…
…I chose to make this my home. Without any family here, I have met some wonderful people that I have chosen to fill that roll. I am truly lucky to be a small part of such an electric city!
What are three things you simply cannot live without?
Good food, good wine and good company (dog, family and friends)!
What’s your favourite restaurant and why?
Toronto is host to so many wonderful places to eat and I love to eat! I love Weslodge… the Scotch egg and the Brussels sprouts?! Let’s get serious! I love Patria for many reasons (like the paella!), and the Chocolate con Aceite Y Sal dessert is beyond out of this world! I think about it often… more often than normal actually. I love Guu, because who doesn’t love a greeting like that when you walk in and when you leave?! My good ol’ fave that is probably a staple for me is Terroni. I love the one on Adelaide (because it’s in my hood). My favourite dishes are the Funghi Assoluti (killer mushroom salad), Caprese Salad, C’t Mang Pizza, and Flourless Chocolate Cake for dessert! That is pretty much my order every time I go.
What’s your favourite drink/cocktail and where do you go to get it?
As much as I love food, I love cocktails as well. I make a great red wine sangria and have a killer patio, so I tend to hang out a lot at my condo in the summer. I love a mean Manhattan and I will say I love them at Harbour Sixty! Weslodge also has a great cocktail list and I’m slightly (only slightly) ashamed to admit I’ve tried most of the drinks on there!