Christopher Bates’ impeccably tailored men’s suits make it easy to forget that we’re right at home in Canada and not in Milan or Paris when his models march down the runway during fashion week. The Vancouver-born designer who has been showing at Toronto Fashion Week since 2011 actually got his training in Milan, which helps explain why almost all of his looks could easily work on Daniel Craig in a Bond movie. We caught up with Bates to find out more about his career and passions before his Spring/Summer 2014 show at Toronto Fashion Week this Wednesday.
Tell us a bit about yourself. What should people know?
I’m on mission to create a leading international designer fashion brand. Outside of that, I love spending time with family and friends, travelling, playing sports, cooking, reading, sizzling, fishing, music, and watching movies.
What are the biggest challenges and best rewards about what you do?
Being an entrepreneur is extremely challenging, but working hard and achieving success is a gratifying experience.
Designing a collection from scratch twice a year is daunting, but the creative process from start to finish is rewarding in itself.
Preparing to show at fashion week is an engrossing endeavour, however the energy and excitement directly before, during, and after the show is scintillating.
What are three things you can’t live without?
Family and friends, the gym, my Moto X mobile (it’s fast).
Finish this sentence: I love Toronto because…
It’s an emerging metropolis with vast potential.
What’s your favourite restaurant and why?
Bosk at the Shangri-La Hotel. The food is impeccable, the room is stunning, and the service is flawless.
What’s one of your favourite go-to designers/brands or accessories lines and why do you sport their fashions?
I only wear my own clothes, but when it comes to footwear I stop for Luca Del Forte’s at Browns.
What products are always your beauty/grooming bag?
Kiehl’s moisturizer for my face and hands, Vaseline for my lips, and Visine for my eyes.
What style trends are you obsessed with right now?
Suspenders, colour, and contemporary tailored suits.