Canada’s unique, annual, fashion fund-and-awareness raiser for breast cancer research, The White Cashmere Collection™ 2017 (video link), returned to the runway on September 28, 2017, for its 14th consecutive year. The ultimate expression of fashion with compassion, this year’s collection took place the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) in Toronto, and featured a national student design competition that awarded 16 emerging fashion design stars across Canada the opportunity to showcase their design talents to the Canadian fashion industry, while supporting a collective vision of a future without Breast Cancer.
The world’s first and only fashion collection crafted in luxuriously soft Cashmere Bathroom Tissue (BT) – Canada’s best-selling brand – the annual White Cashmere Collection™ unites the softness of Cashmere with support for Canadian fashion designers and the Canadian Cancer Society. More than 150 students from 11 schools across Canada took part in the competition. This year’s remarkable 16 finalists were challenged with designing BT Couture reflecting true Canadian style, honouring Canada’s 150th birthday. #Cashmere17’s line-up includes: Lesley Hampton and Juwyriya Hersi (George Brown College, Toronto); Adrian Arnieri and Van Yanez (Ryerson University, Toronto); Charlotte Li and Nagat Bahumaid (Seneca College, Toronto); Chen Chen and Vita Nikitenko (Collège La Salle, Montréal); Marie Pier Bergeron (Cégep Marie-Victorin, Montréal); Chelsea Cox (Kwantlen Polytechnic University, British Columbia); Asli Katina Bozdag (Blanche Macdonald Centre, British Columbia); Kel Dumana and Zohre Alipour (Visual College of Art and Design of Vancouver, British Columbia); Katie Stutheit (Lethbridge College, Alberta); Kayley Champagne (Olds College, Alberta); and Brianna West (Nova Scotia College of Art and Design).
Standing out from the crowd of 16 inspiring finalists was Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Chelsea Cox who was named the winner of the 2017 Student Design Competition and a $4,000 bursary. No fewer than 9,689 tubular beads—actually tiny hand-rolled strips of Cashmere bathroom tissue sealed with clear tape—yield the shimmery herringbone effect of Chelsea Cox’s update on the iconic Hudson’s Bay coat. Ryerson University’s Adrian Arnieri took home the second place $2,000 prize with his galactic riff on Canada’s traditional winter protector: the fur coat. The third place $1,000 winner went to Seneca College’s Charlotte Li showcasing her Cashmere BT garment inspired by the 63-year-old widow, Annie Edson Taylor, who successfully barrelled over Niagara Falls in 1901.