There’s something about wrapping yourself in sumptuous scarf of the thickest wool. For her debut collection, Peggy Sue intertwined the feeling of safe comfort, and luxurious designs. Designer Peggy Sue Deaven-Smiltniek took home Canada’s top design prize earlier this month for her knit-centric debut collection. After a stint in the mass market fashion industry in New York, she left with a desire to create something with a purpose. The designer started investing her time in create a dialogue between the industry and the trace-ability of what we buy. Crafted with a local focus in mind – all materials are sourced from her home province of Ontario. All the wool is sheared from sheep in Orangeville, and Alpaca wool is sourced from Sault Saint Marie and Palmerston, two towns within driving distance of the designer’s studio.
As much as the line is rooted in slow-fashion, the aesthetics of the collection speak very present day. Woven dresses are modern in silhouette, hugging close to the figure while necklines plummeted. Flared sweater pants were seventies in aesthetic, but just as easily stepped into a contemporary wardrobe. Over-sized wraps and knits in earthen tones were over-the-top in size and cozy in appeal. Floor length gowns dotted in between knitted separates – ranging from long scarves to knee length skirts to kimono jackets.
Although the collection heavily revolves around knits ready for the coldest of winters, the aesthetic spoke more to the sirens of the seventies. Pants flare, necklines plunged, and top coats were over-sized. Mini dresses in thick, hand-woven wool made an appearance, as did floor-grazing scarves.
Overall, her conceit is a poetic one – she’s take her strong belief in trace-ability of products and combined it with beautifully crafted garments. By working with artisans and farmers, she’s keeping the art of craftsmanship alive by celebrating the hand of the artist. Rooted in heritage, you can track every single piece down to the place it was made.