Why I Love Denis Gagnon

Semaine de Mode Montréal 18
I had the pleasure of viewing the Denis Gagnon show in person, this past Montreal Fashion Week 2010. When I say show, I mean it was not just a fashion show, but an art show as well! This was quite a difficult show to get into, but I was there at the right place at the right moment and we managed to get those elusive tickets. He is the fashion king of Quebec, and in my books he ought to be way more famous. Why he is not (yet, perhaps), I cannot fathom.

Denis Gagnon MFW 18

I spoke with him after the show, and this avant-garde designer from Lac St. Jean is quite shy & down to earth. When you are near him, you cannot but look at him in awe, and try to imagine what goes on in his head while he is at work creating fashionable pieces of art. And when you speak with him, you don't feel a barrier or a shield, you would expect to appear while in the company of someone so supremely talented. He is who he is, to put it in the simplest of terms. Not pretentious or shallow like you might expect from a designer of his caliber, he is Denis Gagnon.

As soon as the first model strutted out, you could tell this was going to be an amazing show! Breath-taking black leather & gold zippers. Only Gagnon could have imagined the use of zippers in such a fantastic manner, a futuristic take on the flapper era of the '20s with draped fringes. He integrated fringes and leather in a very abstract way, and all of those draped fringe dresses are now on my must-have list, I Want! Contemporary and incredibly cool, Gagnon used black leather, a rich shade of chocolate brown, strong gray and a metallic navy gray as his color palette. You may say it's not much, but trust me as the models strutted down the runway, everything seemed so invigorating and different! I think the leather items can be very versatile, so I recommend one of the leather jackets if you want to own a Gagnon piece. Everything I saw on the runway seemed new, not something seen before or copied, but then again I have no room for doubt when it comes to Denis Gagnon's creative genius. My favourite piece was the complete gold zipper mini dress showcased towards the end. It was the perfect finale to that show and very well placed, as everybody I spoke to after the show remembered that dress perfectly. The whole dress from front to back was astonishing! Even now when I look at the pictures, I am amazed!

Denis Gagnon Fall/Winter 2010

Denis Gagnon MFW 18

I truly wish that Gagnon would show his collections in NYC, Milan and Paris soon. I am proud to be a Montrealer because of him; knowing that in my city live great designers like Denis Gagnon. The time has come to show him off to the world! There is a documentary coming out on March 21, titled "Je m'appelle Denis Gagnon" by Khoa Lê, which premiers at the International Festival of Films on Art.

Denis Gagnon Fall/Winter 2010

I felt lucky to be at the MFW all week, and I thought the Denis Gagnon show ended this season perfectly, a true fairytale ending. Can you imagine Cinderella coming home from the ball in that gold zipper dress? I can.

For tons of pictures from the Denis Gagnon show, click here.

Photographs by Abir Shah

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