16 Apr Mercedes Morin Spring-Summer 2017 Collection Launch
A few days ago, Mercedes Morin, a young Montreal designer, celebrated the launch of her Spring-Summer 2017 collection. We invite you to step into Atelier Vio-Li with us, where the fun and friendly “5 à 8” event took place, for an opportunity to meet Mercedes and discover her newest designs.
Friends, family, collaborators, all gathered at Atelier Vio-Li for the occasion. The new designs greeted the guests right from the door, and the shining sun created the perfect ambiance for the launch of a summer collection. A series of hand-dyed dresses, white t-shirts with coral inserts, and a gorgeous white organza shirt were all part of a beautiful white-and coral-tones Summer 2017 collection for women. What’s new this season is a collection for men. It was a great occasion for the guests to get some fresh new designs for this season, and, for the more budget conscious, older designs were available at discounted prices.
Mercedes has always had a passion for fashion and design, so it comes as no surprise that at only 25, she is already launching her third collection. Pure creative spirit, Mercedes is more than just a designer, she is also a textile artist, and part of the fabrics used in her collections go through transformations like dye, knit and weaving. In order to get to know her better and have a better insight into her designs and creative processes, here is our interview with Mercedes Morin.
Mercedes Morin: The Summer 2017 collection is called “Reef”, and is inspired by corals and a wave of my childhood memories on the beach. My father is Dominican, so I spent a lot of time with him on the beach. I created, for example, the pattern of the shirt inspired by corals and little minerals. I wanted pastel colours for this collection, as they remind me of the sea. The sweatshirt for men for example, has a slight turquoise tint.
TC: How would you describe your signature aesthetics?
MM: It’s quite classic but with a twist. You can wear it at work but also as an evening look. I pay very close attention to the quality of my fabrics and everything I use is made here in Montreal.
TC: What inspires you to create in general?
MM: All sorts of things, really. I try to always keep an eye out and pay as much attention as I can. It can be from a movie, it could be from a travel. I love a a preppy style and I’m also interested a lot in 20th century fashion. I love the 60’s, so I integrate that a bit in my designs.
TC: What do you do when you feel uninspired? How do you get out of a creative rut?
MM: When this happens, I have to take my mind off things for a bit. I try to go out, I try to expose myself to a lot of different things. I try to immerse myself in art, go to museums, but even going out with friends can help, because ideas could come out of nowhere.
TC: Tell us a bit about you and your career path.
MM: My mom is a costume designer so I was always immersed in design. I didn’t want to do this at the beginning, but after all this exposure to costumes, fabrics, sewing, I ended up falling in love with the profession. I studied fashion design at Marie-Victorin, but I didn’t finish the program, because for some reason, I didn’t find my place there. I worked in fashion for a few years for various Montreal designers, and then I went back to school to study textile construction, a program from which I graduated last year. I learned semi-industrial knitting, weaving and dyeing, which I integrated in my work. I have a lot of pieces which are hand dyed and knits which I designed.
TC: Quebec is not quite the best market for fashion. How do you manage to push through?
MM: Social networks help a lot, for sure. They put us in contact with a lot of people around the world. Also, online sales help. Eventually I hope to break into other markets, like the US market, or, something I’m really interested in, the Asian market. Maybe one day I’ll go on a business trip to Japan or to Korea, which is a big and very interesting market. Over there they value Canadian and American design a lot; they see it as high quality and exotic.
TC: Can you share with us some of your plans for the future?
MM: Well, already this summer we introduced designs for men. This is something new and I am excited to see how it will work out. But my big dream would be to create a shoe collection. But this is something I don’t know much about, and I don’t even know where to start. Maybe I’ll do a collaboration, if I meet the right person, eventually.
TC: If you were to have a conversation with your younger self, what would you say?
MM: That it’s all right to take your time, there’s no rush. I really started young and I got involved in a lot of projects. And it’s ok to do something else as well. I was always involved in fashion and tailoring and i didn’t explore other things.
Atelier Vio-Li is the workshop where Mercedes’s designs come to life. It’s the place where she spends most of her work time. Here are some “behind the scenes” photos, a sneak-peek into the world of Mercedes Morin.
Text: Tora Chirila