fashion magazine
Laid Back, Sexy, Fresh
By MARILYN R. WILSON
Photography by KIN CHAN
Styling - DEANNA PALKOWSKI @ Lizbell Agency
Make-up/Hair - NEGAR @ Lizbell Agency
Model - LISA @ Lizbell Agency
What do Vogue, Chatelaine, Glamour, Canadian Living and Allure all have in common? Designs from International Fashions have graced their pages. In addition to creating private label garments, this 30-year Vancouver success story offers two large in-house brands - Kersh and Press. Widely recognized for both quality and affordability, there are over 10,000 specialty stores in North America alone on their client list. Internationally they can be found in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Australia.

Ryan Pugsley began working for the company five years ago as a sales and marketing assistant. This year he stepped into the position of Marketing Manager as well as assuming the role of Media Spokesperson. He shares, "It is really a family feeling here. The sales team, the marketing team and the design team meet together and are all equally involved in everything that happens. It's important for all of us to work together. You can be a designer and make something that's absolutely gorgeous, but is it going to sell?" This ensures that the Kersh & Press lines deliver garments that are both stylish and desirable.

Both lines were designed to have a cool, West Coast style - laid back, sexy and fresh - with the feel of luxury, but at an affordable retail price. The fact the company is experiencing a phenomenal growth in sales indicates they have achieved all that and more. Each line is released in four separate deliveries. First to arrive is a selection of basics. Then there are three separate fashion shipments sent out at intervals over the course of the season. Everything is designed within a theme so that the garments can be mixed, matched and layered easily. Spacing out the deliveries encourages customers to regularly check back to see what new has arrived.

Launched in 2006, Kersh is aimed at the pretty tomboy. This is someone who is career-oriented and goes out with friends at night, but on the weekends can be found riding horses and skiing. It's a mix of functionality with a "cute kind of sexy fashion." Inspiration for Spring 2011 is The Great Escape. The three fashion deliveries include: Sahara Voyage, cargo details and army green mixed with horizon orange; Nubian Queen, a bit more feminine, but exaggerated, bold and colourful; and Desert Rose, gorgeous, feminine, soft and lacy. "This is her journey from first starting out, to being free and experiencing bold things, and then finding peace and becoming who she is."

Press is a newer line for the company with a more contemporary feel and a hipper styling. Spring 2011 is a personal journey - the Restless Heart." The line moves fluidly through the season from a city feeling into one of femininity. As you go into the summer deliveries, the fabrics and colours get lighter. Colours such as silver, grey and army green wash through the collection. There are still cargo details, but made feminine by using them on sexy skinny pants. Mixing satin and jersey fabrics bring a luxury feel to the garments and the sweaters are show-stoppers with a great colour palette, open weave detailing and interesting yarns.

In the last year International Fashions has moved beyond clothing launching Kersh handbags and lounge wear. What is next on the list? Look for Press leather outer wear in the fall. Future seasons may also include a line of shoes for both brands and possibly a Kersh fragrance.

For more information go to: www.ifashions.ca, www.kersh.ca or www.pressfashions.com.