98. 1957 Canadian Couturiers

One of my favourite pages ever! The Association of Canadian Couturiers; Marie-Paule, Raoul Jean Foure, Jacques Michael, Mountjoie, France Davies, Jacques Michael and Danjou, working with Canadian designed and made textiles, written up by Iona Monahan and illustrated by Jennifer Stowell, a “tour de force” by Canadian talent.

Canadian couture was not new in the 1950’s. As posted previously, there were certainly couturiers working in Canada in the earlier part of the century, who were on occasion,  recognized individually for their talents. World War 2 however, forced the Canadian designer to become less dependent on Paris for ideas and textiles and to create a larger awareness of their existence and skills . They rose to the occasion and people began to take note. From a Parisian journalist, writing in a Canadian publication, in 1947;

“In Canada I find new Silhouettes, new colours and novel new fabrics. I am satisfied that a typically Canadian “haute couture” (style) is at last emerging; “haute couture” which owes less and less to foreign influences, and which one day should be able to compete fearlessly with Paris or American creations in the world markets.”

The Association of Canadian Couturiers formed in 1954. Their membership grew to include designers from across Canada. and they took their shows to multiple Canadian cities. Canadians began to acknowledge their own. They teamed with the textile industry which helped to boost their recognition further. They showed in New York, where they were met with critical and financial acclaim, which of course, helped them to be further applauded at home, as you can see here!  They continued to appear as a group through the 1950s and the majority of the 1960s.  The later 1960s would find the rise of the Canadian ready-to-wear designers popularity, however, and the last I can find of Canadian Couturiers, at least as an organization, appears to be their showcase at Expo ’67.