The Toronto Maple Leafs, in partnership with The Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards (CAFA), announced Tuesday that public voting has opened for the TML Fashion Challenge. Leafs Nation will have the opportunity to vote for their favourite of the top six finalists’ designs today until November 30 by visiting leafsfashionchallenge.com. The top three mens and womens capsule collection finalists (alphabetically by last name) are:
Brian Ho Sang
Brian Ho Sang
Ellie Mae Waters
The TML Fashion Challenge launched in July in celebration of the Toronto Maple Leafs Centennial Season, with the Leafs and CAFA inviting local designers to create capsule collections for both men and women inspired by the team’s new sweater and logo. After receiving over 200 entries, the Toronto Maple Leafs and CAFA selected the top 10 finalists, five mens and five womens collections that faced the contest’s judging panel. The panel included industry experts CAFA President, Vicky Milner, MUCH/MTV personality Liz Trinnear, Editor in Chief of The Kit, Laura deCarufel, and the Editor in Chief of Flare Magazine, Cameron Williamson who collaborated to narrow the submissions down to the top five finalists listed above. Leafs Nation will select which designer’s collection they would like to see produced by sports apparel specialists Mitchell & Ness next season by voting online at leafsfashionchallenge.com. Every fan that votes is eligible to win a Maple Leafs swag bag with items from the winning collection.
(alphabetically by last name)
Richard Campos (Mens)
Richard Campos is a graphic designer and sports fan born and raised in Toronto. HIs love of the Maple Leafs and the city of Toronto was his inspiration in his thought process. Fashion and apparel trends influenced his take on modern designs mixed with heritage pieces, like the new Leafs logo, an updated version of an iconic logo.
Richard wanted the new logo to be the focal point of each design with embellishments such as inks, fabrics and embroidery to enhance the look and feel of each piece. He felt that each piece should be something that every fan would be proud of wearing rather it be at the office or to the gym.
Michael Duhamel (Womens)
Michael believes that apparel doesn’t have to be complicated. Keep it simple but don’t compromise on quality. So that’s what he did. He also wanted to honor the rich history of the Toronto Maple Leafs and he did so with a commemorative championship patch.
Throughout his design process Michael also recalled what Brendan Shanahan said about Conn Smythe: “Conn Smythe spoke of his team wearing the maple leaf badge with ‘Honour, Pride and Courage’ and those words are now stitched into the collar of each sweater so that our players, and fans, are reminded of that every time they put it on.” Michael believes that is the same experience a fan should have, and not just with an official jersey.
Shawn Hewson (Mens)
Shawn’s designs draw inspiration from, and celebrate, the 100-year history of the Toronto Maple Leafs. An emphasis on bringing a designer aesthetic to a sports and entertainment brand steeped in history influenced his initial design process. While the capsule collection itself, as well as the individual pieces, are forward-looking, and reflect current trends, they also share an enduring quality, and a decidedly Canadian and Torontonian personality.
Shawn’s designs offer an aesthetic that can be easily embraced by a wide-ranging demographic of Leafs fans, Torontonians, consumers. These items are designed not only to offer a more fashionable compliment of merchandise to Leafs fans, but to also offer Leafs merchandise (together with a connection to the organization) to style-conscious Torontonians and visitors to Toronto.
Brian Ho Sang (Both)
The inspiration for the visual aesthetic of the capsule collection is Canadiana and classic athletic wear with elements taken from hockey heritage. Form follows function. The pieces are essential staples crafted with modern materials and construction. They are designed to be wearable, comfortable and durable.
The collection effectively targets all age groups and demographics of Maple Leafs fans. For older fans the collection may recall memories and nostalgic moments; for young fans the collection will introduce them to some aspects of hockey heritage. Brian want to effectively utilize the new logo so the collection could become an extension of the Maple Leafs brand.
Ellie Mae Waters (Womens)
Ellie grew up watching the Toronto Maple Leafs with her dad, and always dreamt of the day she would have the opportunity to design the Toronto Maple Leafs “FAN” collection. She says he gave her the tools to fall in love with this city’s hockey team, and she’s been cheering them on ever since.
In honor of the 100th Year Anniversary, Ellie named her collection Retro-Tech. She wanted to bring back the retro feel of the 70’s. This collection includes the “old school” Toronto Maple Leafs linear logo design and Leaf icon. Her designs come with a Retro-modern fit, and added mesh as a technical element. Ellie added two jacket styles to the collection, and inside she incorporated two different inspirational Mike Babcock quotes from his first press conference as the Leafs Coach.
For Leafs fans Ellie wanted to create a collection where they can wear the product not only in the arena, but outside of it as well – connecting their love and support for the Toronto Maple Leafs into their everyday lifestyle.