Sunday, April 4, 2010

Fashion Felon

What are fashion crimes?

Wearing socks and sandals, makes you a fashion victim.

Sporting a knockoff Fendi and passing it off as the real deal, makes you a fashion fraud.

But what is a fashion felon? Here at liipstik being a fashion felon is a good thing. A fashion felon is someone whose fashion, design and sense of style is so dope it should be a crime.

This month liipstik catches up with Toronto designer Samantha Stoncius and explores why she’s guilty of being a fashion felon. Read more to find out about Samantha's designs.

Felon: Samantha Stoncius aka Sam

Date of Birth: March 3, 1987

Charge: Samantha is guilty for her unique sense of mixing vibrant colours to create feminine frocks that can be found on the streets of Toronto and Montreal.

At five-years-old Samantha was creating, whether it was crafts, paintings or bracelets her creative juices were always flowing. The day Sam found her mother’s sewing machine was the best day of her life. “I love to make. I always cared about how I looked and clothes are the most tangible thing I could manipulate,” says Sam. At 14 Sam began to get more serious about her passion for fashion and knew she wanted to be a designer.

In the beginning of her designing career, Sam taught herself a lot. However her mother and her sister thought it would be a great idea for her to take lessons, so they signed her up for a sewing class. “The class was five-weeks long and was really boring. I made a tank top. I enjoyed myself but I felt like really didn’t learn that much,” laughs Sam. When she was 18, she packed up her scissors, designs and sewing kit to leave her hometown of Toronto and head east to Montreal’s Lasalle College for a three-year fashion design program. It was a different experience then her sewing class and Sam was excited for the change. For the first time she would be going to school for something she was passionate and dedicated to and the change of scenery didn’t hurt either. “I went to school in Montreal because I wanted to experience fashion in another city. I learned so much about myself and my career. And being in school and loving it was the craziest,” recalls Sam.

Samantha’s clothing line is a perfect reflection of who she is as a person and a designer. Her clothes are colourful, fun, creative, feminine and unique. She’s inspired by random things like music, runway shows, fabrics and everyday life. For Sam she finds some of her best outfits were created when she was going to an event. “I’m my number one customer and I always keep myself in mind. I hope I have popular taste.” And she sure does. After graduation, Sam returned to Toronto and her fabrics, drawing and cutting tables have taken over the basement in her parents’ west-end home. Now 2010 is looking like one of her most promising years yet. Her clothes are featured online at and can be found in five boutiques in both Toronto and Montreal. Not to mention her popularity is growing more and more each season. Since 2008, she’s been in several fashion shows in Toronto and Montreal including the Toronto Clothing Show, with more to come throughout the year.

Even though Sam’s success and empire keep on expanding each fashion season, over the years she’s learnt to be more careful and patient not to rush into things anymore. “Before I was so ambitious, sometimes so ambitious to a fault. But now I have grown and understand everything takes time to do properly.” Now Sam is always looking forward to the next step in her career and working hard to get there. Her ultimate goal is to show in Toronto’s Fashion Week for her family and friends and for the city where she first fell in love with fashion. “I have the application package and everything, but it’s a lot of money, but really worth it. I’ll probably wait another season or two.” But for now Sam’s going to stay humble and continue to work hard with her many designs, colourful fabrics and drawing and cutting tables conquering her parents’ basement.

For more information about Samantha's designs click here

(Toronto Clothing Show - Fall 2009)

(A selection of fabrics in her design studio)

(Some fun summer dresses from Samantha)

(Samantha enjoying one of her designs)

(Final sketches for designs)

(Sam in one of her popular library dresses)

(Samantha's intern working hard in her design studio cutting fabrics)

(Samantha's past designs stored away)

(Sam's hectic design studio aka her parents basement)

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