fashion magazine
Télio Competition - Canada's Breakthrough Designer 2012
by Marilyn R. Wilson
Photography by PETER JENSEN -

In February 2012, Montreal Fashion Week showcased an amazing competition for fashion design students Canada-wide during their Fall/Winter season. Hosted by TÉLIO - one of North America's leading import, export and distribution companies with textiles that are at the cutting edge of fashion - this event has been influential in showcasing and providing support for rising talent since 2006.

Each year TÉLIO announces a new theme as well as a selection of fabrics for the students to choose from. Finalists are given yardage to complete their garment as well as the opportunity to showcase it on the runway to an enthusiastic audience. The show is one of the top draws at fashion week with every seat occupied as well as a standing room only crowd.

This year the theme was "ROUGE + RED" - "It can stir a particular feeling, emotion or state of being from the depths of your very soul..." 466 student nation-wide submitted illustrations of their vision and 25 finalists were picked by a four person jury of top industry professionals - Joeffer Caoc, Sarah Casselman, Annick Charbonneau and Valerie Dumaine. The quality of the 25 garments shown was amazing, making it a very difficult decision overall. 5 top designs were selected and awarded scholarships totaling $15,000.

Vancouver was well-represented by 6 local design students who created an innovative selection of garments and Fame'd Magazine is proud to offer their bios in our current edition. Congratulations to each of these successful finalists. A special thank-you also goes to TÉLIO as well for providing this chance-of-a-lifetime opportunity.

Darya Ahmadi (Vancouver Community College)
Darya Ahmadi is an Iranian-Canadian who has lived in Vancouver since 2006. While studying psychology and working with a psychologist as an assistant in Iran in the late '90's, this talented artist began to create original garments as a second job. After three months, she applied for to the part-time Fashion Design program at Vancouver Community College and was accepted. After only her first year at VCC, Tiffany Bridal hired her for a full-time position. A few months later a part-time position with Chanel Boutique opened up. Ahmadi quit both jobs after two years and decided to go back to VCC for their full-time Fashion Diploma program. This year her submission was selected as one of 25 finalists in the Telio Competition 2012 - a dream is come true! With graduation in her sights, the next focus will be becoming an established fashion designer in Canada.

Laura Jackson (The Art Institute of Vancouver)
Born and raised in Toronto, design student Laura Jackson originally thought she was going to be a painter. thought I was going to be a painter. One day flipping through magazines she remembers thinking, "My god I don't like anything in these magazines, so boring." The budding artist began sketching out bags and jackets, followed by an overwhelming epiphany. "This is it, I am going to be a Fashion Designer." Although her original choice on acceptance at The Art Institute of Vancouver was Fashion Marketing & Management, the switch was quickly made to Fashion Design at the The Art Institute of Vancouver, Jackson was recently honoured by having one over her designs chosen as a finalist in the Telio Competition 2012. It was a jacket imbued with a stunning spiral shape inspired by when the wind picks up the fall leaves and spirals in circles. The Orion lace sleeves represented those leaves.

Peggy Chen (Kwantlen Polytechnic University)
Peggy Chen didn't start sewing, drafting, and drawing until she entered the fashion design program at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in 2008. Being one of the 25 finalists of Telio Design Competition proved that the decision of quitting her job as a journalist and leaving Hong Kong was not a mistake. Chen was born in Winnipeg, but lived in Hong Kong for more than twenty years. After returning to Canada, culture shock became an issue. However, being able to embrace the diversity between cultures inspires her to design clothing that keep the wearers and garments in harmony. One goal is to launch her own brand and produce unique, sustainable products with advanced technology and craftsmanship in China by 2020. Of course, this talented artist is going to inspire people in other countries with what she has learned in Canada, and be inspired by people surrounding her. To view Chen's portfolio go to

Roopi Matharu (Vancouver Community College)
Born in the United Kingdom, Roopi Matharu moved to Canada in 2009 at the age of 19. An early interest in art and design led her to study fine art and textiles at GCSEs and A Levels followed by a year at Nottingham Trent University focused on Fashion Design. Strong culture aspects are incorporated into her design process. Developing prints is also one of her strengths. Her initial goal is to work in New York City for Conde Nast in a creative role at a fashion magazine followed by becoming a designer at a major fashion house. Participating in the Telio Design Competition- Canada's Next Breakthrough Designer this year as one of 15 finalists was a humbling. It was also very exciting to be able to showcase at MFW. Now, she is working on her Graduate Collection for September 2012 and is looking for to getting experience in industry after graduation.

Sahar Tarameshlou (The Art Institute of Vancouver)
Fashion designer Sahar Tarameshlou grew up in Tehran and became a Canadian Citizen with her family in hopes of pursuing her fashion design career. She is currently studying Fashion Design at the Art Institute of Vancouver and is flourishing in her work. Sahar's involvement in fashion began at an early age, with a devotion to dressing her friends, and always putting together outfits that were creative and different yet flattering and appealing. She often takes inspiration for her work from her culture, and she creates styles that are pure and elegant. Her parent's support especially her mother's has been a big influence in her success as they have always admired her outstanding sketches and designs. Sahar's work is inspired by Persian design, architectural monuments; however she likes to keep a consistent balance between tradition and innovation.

Sophie Doyle (Vancouver Community College)
Sophie Doyle was born and raised in the mountain town of Whistler, BC. She grew up an avid snowboarder with a keen interest in art and design. Sophie has a love for designing sportswear, and going into the program wanted to begin a ski/snowboard clothing company. She is now in her second year at VCC and has since expanded her horizons. She has proven herself a talented high fashion designer, illustrator, and seamstress. Sophie's style is clean, edgy, modern and youthful. After graduation she hopes to get a design internship, and learn as much as possible before beginning her career in the industry.