Posts from ‘The Studio!’

Oct
10

Its starting to feel cool. Well, its been a couple weeks already in Montréal. Its time to reinvent the fall wardrobe. How about some soft fabrics and stylish collars ? Or tops embellished with Katrin Leblond’s unique and crafty appliquées ? Lets not forget this season’s limited edition prints. Read on, Katrin Leblond has some great new sweaters for your wardrobe.

Soft fabrics and Stylish collars

The red prima pullover in the center is made with brushed polyester and has a soft and fleece-like feel on the inside. The floral textured jacquard collar gives an elegant touch and can be worn many ways. It can be a bateau style (leaving the shoulders more exposed) as well as cover one or both shoulders. It has a dart at the bust, making the sweater slightly fitted.

On either side is the oh so pleasantly soft turtleneck. Its a loose yet fitted sweater, giving it a feminine touch. The sleeves are long and slim. The collar ruffles nicely with a little tug of the drawstrings. There is a colour combination between the inside of the collar and the draw string.

 

 

Unique and crafty appliquées.

The black crop cardigan has a selection of botanical embellishments. There is a butterfly hovering over the left shoulder.  The buttons are little metal flowers with a pearl in the center.

What is the appliquée about on this lavender grey pullover ?  One could imagine its a pagan Botticelli Venus. There is also zodiac symbols and Swarovki crystals. It was digitally printed, for those who might be curious.

And third, here is the Poet blouse. The yoke is a mesh fabric with embroidered feathers that are shades of red, green and coral. The fabric is an amazing rust colour and its a high quality, pill-free rayon.

 

Limited edition prints

On the left, the Laurentien Flower print showcases art deco floral arrangement on a black background from the forests north of Montréal : trilliums, trout lily, dogtooth violet, bleeding hearts and rose hips.

The whimsical bubble leaf print has olive-green, light orange, ochre, dark violet and red-orange leaves. The stems are black and on the leaves are white “bubbles”, allowing you to wear this top with  black and white. The background colour is a warm cinnamon.

The Enchanted Forest print showcases magical trees with branches that reach into the night sky where the full moon shines bright.  Small fairy-like dancing ladies are scattered throughout.

Sep
27

Written by Claire Gérin-Lajoie

Whatever it is. Fall ? Elections ? One too many plastic straws ? Whatever. All of it. Well, whatever it is, I took a moment to step back as I chose my outfit this morning. What emerging solutions am I taking part in ? What conversations am I having with myself right now ? What am I saying to others as I wear this dress ?  It’s dark blue with three different floral motifs that come together. Yes, this feels ‘just right’. I’m taking a moment to tie things together.

What is so magic about an outfit that feels ‘just right’ ?

Meet Katrin Leblond, Montréal designer on 4647 Boul. Saint-Laurent. She has some insight about this. As I enter the boutique, I am greeted by an array of cinnamons, greens and dusty pinks. A client comes in looking for a 40th anniversary gift for herself. Let’s call her Linda. A black wool IVKO coat with colourful floral motifs catches her eye. She tries it on and her faces glows with delight at the sight of herself. It feels ‘just right’.

The only issue Linda says is that the coat isn’t adjusted to her hips. And that is where the wonders of an in-store alterations service comes in (for clothing bought at the store only, mind you). There is more to it than simply shortening pants or taking in the waist. In this particular case, the coat was completely re-adjusted adding patchwork panels to the side and black trimming at the bottom. Upon receiving her coat, Linda was enchanted; her shoulders, heart and hips all aligned to greet the world with style.

Delighted by her new IVKO Jacket. 

“There is no real medium or large” Katrin says. “As woman, our body take on different shapes and curves throughout our lives. An older woman shouldn’t feel like the only option she has is to wear loose clothing, for example. Tailoring her clothes will add to her sense of dignity and well-being.”  Sometimes the changes can be very subtle. In any case, it is a matter of working with the designer to find the right adjustments. For example, another customer wanted her jacket to be fitting just so at the bust and scooping in the back. A solution was found. It felt easy. “After all, this is what we do” Katrin chimed in.

Miu Me Jacket. Katrin Leblond design. 

Finding solutions together feels ‘just right’. Especially in these moments that feel chaotic. Let’s figure this out, we say. Let’s lend our vulnerability to the process. Let’s open up and let their ideas pollinate ours.

On that note, lately I’ve been very inspired by Montreal author Michelle Holliday and her book The age of Thrivability: Vital perspectives and practices for a better world.  She writes about what makes living organisms thrive, be it a person, a team or a cell. As stewards, we cultivate a space where thriving unfolds. Drawing from her work, I think about how we are stewards of our own body and how our clothes are part of the conversation we have with ourselves. Through the outfits we choose we tell our story to the world.

Whatever the story may be. Fall ? Elections ? A new kind of straw ? All of it. 

Feb
15

We love. We love.  We love

We choose love instead of fear. We choose to be brave.  We choose to make art.  We choose to make change.  We choose to connect.  We choose to lift each other up.  We choose to learn more.  We choose to do new things.  We choose to play.  We choose to laugh.  We choose to manifest awesomeness.  We choose to try new things.  We are the artists, the makers, the revolutionaries, the healers, the witches, the feminists.

shop sacred heart pillows here.

Nov
18

Katrin is renowned for her artfully embellished dresses and jackets, as well as for her brilliant twists on standard cuts. Katrin’s collections combine discipline and detail with whimsy and vitality. Her works are inspired by trends yet outside them, and don’t go out of fashion. 

Katrin is committed to ethical practice in fashion design and manufacturing. Each of Katrin’s original pieces is cut and sewn in her Montreal studio. All her materials are locally sourced, from fabrics down to thread and zipper—all produced by local workers in Montreal’s vibrant fashion sector, and requiring less fossil fuel for transport. Katrin’s works prove just how dazzling ethical fashion can be.

Show here the back of the Faces Optical Illusion Dress 

Shown here the Garden Zip Up Jacket

Jul
10

First let me say thank you!

 Thank you for the life I live as a creative entrepreneur.  Thank you to the artists and designers I have collaborated with to illustrate these prints, manifest these classic-cut patterns and sew this high quality swimwear.  I am grateful that I get to make and print my designs on locally made textiles in a city that still supports all levels of the textile industry.  This creative, yet industrial production circle all takes place within a 10k radius of my store.  

This is the goddess one-piece swimsuit.  It is fully lined and available in XS-XXL

This is the goddess bikini, a classic cut with decent support, fully lined and available in XS-XL

This is the duffle bag made from fast-drying poly-canvas.  Perfect for yoga/sport/beach/snorkeling gear.

This is the swim/sport set.  Perfect for the life of an active person who needs one thing for everything.  The sports bra combines well with the leggings as well.  Fully lined and available in XS-XL

Shop the swimwear here

 

Credit due:

Artists who painted with me: Iris Glaser  (black floral) and Emily Rose Michaud (space)

Graphic Design:  Iris Glaser

Textile Printing:  Beaufab/Emmis

Studio Team:  Bernard, Patti, Annick

Production team: Patti, Annick, Caroline

Oct
18
Jun
01

Katrin Leblond’s new collection – Nouvelle Collection

VICTORIA

for girls 2-9 years old – pour fillette de 2 a 9 ans

Launch Party – Party de lancement

Saturday June 4 11am-5pm – Samedi 4 Juin de 11h-17h

4647 St-Laurent blvd.

Face painting all day – Painture sur visage toute la journee

 

Katrin Leblond kids collection Katrin Leblond kids collection Katrin Leblond kids collection strawberry dress  Katrin Leblond kids collection strawberry dressKatrin Leblond kids collection Montreal dress   Katrin Leblond kids collection Montreal topKatrin Leblond kids collection Mermaid dressKatrin Leblond kids collection water dressKatrin Leblond kids collection Katrin Leblond kids collection  Katrin Leblond kids collection space dressKatrin Leblond kids collection space galaxie dress Katrin Leblond kids collection heart dressKatrin Leblond kids collection

Feb
18

So I looked around my store one day and realized I had nothing with my classic storybook embellishments on them.  So I took the plunge into some ideas I had been dreaming of.  Here is the resulting production.

Galaxy Dress Katrin Leblond

Galaxy Dress gold and navy Katrin Leblond Montreal DesignBlack and White Galaxy Dress Katrin Leblond Jupe Geometrique Katrin Leblond Tweed pink ribbon skirt Katrinb Leblond Party Flag skirt Katrin Leblond Bunting flags Hot Air Balloon skirt Katrin Leblond

shop Katrin Leblond Design

Feb
09

It may be the deepest of winter outside, but in the studio, and therefor my mind, it is all about Spring.

Here is a peek at things to come and the process of making them in my studio.

Sale time.  With new things on their way, I am feeling very motivated to clear out the old inventory.  I have just posted many styles on sale in the online store at www.katrinleblond.com.  I even put the Ivko on sale, though I usually don’t until much later in the sale season, but there wasn’t much, so I thought why not.

Cutting table Katrin Leblond Studio

Cutting table Katrin Leblond Design

Katrin Leblond Studio

Katrin Leblond Headpieces

New headpieces made after returning from an inspiration trip to Mexico.  The land of colour!

Ivko Spring 2016 fabric swatch

Here is a swatch of Ivko knits coming soon.

Boutique Katrin Leblond

Mannequins Katrin Leblond Design

The final #watercolour sitting on a beautiful Mexican tile table. Ahhhh Akumal! I miss you already. #akumal #stilllife #painting #inspired

ethical, natural, local and beautiful. shop online now.

Jan
18

Kat3

I feel like stabbing myself with scissors; it is so quiet in the store.

  Luckily I have the production of the new collection in the Studio to keep busy and creative. 

January is a creative time

2015 collection is inspired by:
FEMINISM
40, 50, 60 & 70 year old REBELS
ADVENTURE TRAVEL
SIMPLE LUXURY

We are in full production of the Spring collection and have already devoted one wall of the store entirely to Spring styles.  This year the collection is both versatile and feminine, sporty and romantic, and always soft and comfortable.  I would even say that this collection is quite dreamy; sheer cottons in beautiful colors and as requested matching tops and skirts and jackets.
EVERYTHING IS MADE IN MONTREAL.  Where it belongs!
That being said, it has been so quiet in the boutique, we are wondering…where is everyone?  Don’t you love us anymore?  Come for the studio sale next week, come for the 2015 collection, come because new clothing is good for your morale.  Whatever your reason, when you are here WE WILL TREAT YOU LIKE THE GODDESS YOU ARE!

May
23

Here they are, all piling up on the table.

Hearts that take waaaay too long to make!  They are pieced from little cut pieces of silk chiffon.  Then we spray them with water and fill all the gaps and keep working that way until they become full fluffy multicolor heart explosions!

silk chiffon ruffle hearts

Appliqued onto tank tops, they come to life.

Camisol coer Katrin Leblond

Ruffle heart tank top white

silk chiffon scrap appliquee

multicolour silk hearts

Here you see them at the early stages of the process.  We sew them onto black or white Lycra mesh so that they retain their elasticity.  The technique is quite complicated.

hands on sewing machine

making hearts for appliquee

Annick making silk ruffle hearts

Before we sew it onto a top, it gets a little haircut to clean up the edges.

Silk heart Katrin Leblond Designer montreal

 

katrin leblond studio

silk herats on sewing machine

What a mess in the studio when these are in production.  Soon we will be making little mini heart pins.  Can’t wait.

Shop KL tops online NOW!  Click here!

Mar
20

Here is the crinoline on the sewing machine getting a custom black hem.  Ohhh… it’s for a bride!

pink crinoline with black hem

Now this is no shy lady, as you can tell from her color choices.

P1090816

This dress is based on one of my dresses in the store, but we customized the colors for her.

Katrin Leblond dress robe montreal

….and I embellished her shoes for her!

embellished shoes for bride

fashion mode montreal party dress

robe occasions montreal special dress

Montreal bride custom order

flower petals under black tulle

Montreal designer dress robes

chaussures embellie

every stitch made with love.

Mar
04

Robe equinoxe de Katrin Leblond Montreal

P1080011

P1090613

P1090622

Sep
17

Two major changes:

1- 1 moved my studio into the back of the boutique

2- We had to renovate to make everything fit into much much much less space!

Here I am showing you the front/the store.  Look my wall is racked three rows high.  Next week, I’ll take some pictures of the studio in the back.  We’re still getting organized in there right now.

What these changes mean for me is that I get to go to work in one place every day.  No more shuttling back and forth from the studio to the store, to the studio.  No more transferring inventory.  No more carrying the new collection on my bike, in my arms, or in my car.  My quality of life just went waaaay up and best of all, I get to be in the store every day.  So come for a peek at the new collection and check out the changes.

Aug
08

This is Lizanne Ryan and doesn’t she look splendid?  She needed an outfit to go to a wedding and liked one of my made to measure wedding dresses, but wanted a skirt and top to go with a silk jacket she already had in her wardrobe.  We started with her jacket which needed some modifications.  We changed the buttons, took out the shoulder pads and took in the sleeves a bit to slim the whole look.  The camisole was on my sale rack (yay!), and the skirt is custom made in my studio.  It is a layer of ivory jersey with petals sew onto it and then an overlay of ivory sheer mesh.  The jewelry is by my new favorite designer Ayala Bar!

Aug
01

Vente d’atelier KL + Vente échantillons Ivko

KL studio sale and Ivko sample sale

IVKO Collection Automne 2013/2014 – 30%

75 styles, tous M

Collection Printemps / Été KL 2013 – 50%

Tout les tailles de XS-XL

Anciennes Collections KL à partir de 20$

Quoi? $20? Oui!

 

QUAND? WHEN?

Vendredi 9 Août de 11h-18h

(seuls les clients avec cette invitation + 1 amie)

Samedi 10 Août de 11h-18h (ouvert à tous)

Dimanche 11 Août de 12h-17h (ouvert à tous)

$$$$$ Venez avec de l’argent comptant $$$$$$

 

Apr
17

Here I am (at the end of a long rainy day…) in my new favourite top:  The Peace tunic in coral.  I liked the material when I purchased it, but wearing it for a few days…now I love it!  It got a lot softer and almost feels like well loved linen.  The embellishments in the coral tunic are tone-on-tone coral petals.

This is the part we do in the studio.  We take the cut pattern pieces and pin little mini petals (that are all hand cut) into position.  Then we sew them down with a decorative stitch creating a pretty ivy pattern.

Below is the cutting table covered with beautiful tiny petals and piles of the prettiest scraps.

Each set is hand cut, pinned and stitched.  Each one is a little different making it true craft.

The colour combination for the white blouse is pink, red and green.  It turned out soo pretty, but you’ll have to come to the boutique to see the final product.

Mar
26

 

A new bolero every 6 months.  That’s my goal.  I want to be the bolero expert.  This is my first collared bolero and it can also be worn as a wrap top.

The embellishments are all sewn in the studio and each little leaf is hand cut.

The sleeve is 3/4 with a little puff on the shoulder.  It’s perfect for hiding those shy arms.  Can be worn over a dress or on it’s own.  I have matching t-shirts with lace backs at the store if you want to wear it as a twin set.  Loving the twin set again.  Granny chic!

 

Feb
14

 Venez visiter notre grande vente d’atelier!

 Super Liquidation sur les collections Automne/Hiver 2011-12 et Printemps 2011-12.  Plus que 1000 morceaux!  Tailles XS-XL.

5 racks à 50%

2 racks à 25$ la piece!

5333 Casgarin #902  514-276-5657

Jeudi 12-19h

Vendredi 12-18h

Feb
07

Tailles de XS – XL

Collections automne-hiver et printemps-été

$$$$$$ Comptant $$$$$$

5333 Casgrain #902 (angle McGuire dans le Mile-End)
514-276-5657

Feb
05

Dear Clients,

I am writing today to tell you to buy less.  I know, weird eh?  I design clothes and I own a store, yet I believe in buying less and I suggest you do the same.

Along with my love of fashion, I am also a long time environmentalist (I almost became an environmental Biologist when I was in CEGEP).  I believe that good quality clothes should last a long time, stay fashionable and be well loved by the person wearing them, or the next person who inherits them. When you’re done with a garment, if it is still clean and in good condition, pass it on.

Here’s how I suggest you get the maximum use from the clothes you purchase, thus reducing each item’s environmental footprint:

1. QUALITY:  Buy only clothes that you love and that are well made.  Perhaps you have to spend more on each item, but you will recover that cost by wearing them more often and for longer.  Buy less, but  definitely buy what you want.

Helpful hints for checking quality:  Good quality jersey fabric should not pill (fuzzy balls on surface). Try rubbing the fabric vigorously in a circular motion to test.  Sometimes, nice wools do pill, and there are a few tricks to maintain a nice surface.  Firstly, you can purchase a “clothes shaver” or “lint shaver”.  It is an electric shaver that magically shaves away all the pilling and returns your garments to their original new state.  Secondly, you can try with a single blade disposable razor.  This is my technique of choice, though I avoid using the razor on very fine rayon jersey.

When buying pants: There is nothing more unfortunate than puffy knees or a saggy bottom.  To avoid this, do a few deep knee bends and check to see if the fabric  in front of the knees gets pushed out, or if it slowly shrinks back into place. You want it to return to the original shape. Pushed out knees is a sign that the wrong type of fabric was used to make the pants.

Examine  the seams and the interior finishing of the garment keeping an eye on the quality of the sewing.  The more often you do this, the better you get at spotting quality.

Read the care instructions:  Is it made from fibers you like to wear?  Will you be able to care for it in the way the manufacturer recommended?  I generally make clothing that wash and wear with very little fuss (except my ready to wear wedding dresses). I recommend that you machine wash garments in cool to warm water with mild detergent and line dry.

2.  REPAIR:  I darn my socks while I watch movies.  Some of them end up with many different coloured yarns in the heel.  I am not offering to darn your socks for you, but I will repair any Katrin Leblond Design clothing you bring me.  Just bring your items to the store and we’ll fix them up to the best of our abilities. Repairs that we are responsible for (manufacturing defects) are  free. KL clothes that have experienced normal wear and tear will be repaired at a fair price. I do not repair clothes that are not from my store, but can recommend an excellent alterations shop.

3.  SECOND HAND: If you don’t want a certain piece of KL clothing anymore or can’t think of anyone to give it to, simply drop it off at my store and we’ll donate it to “Le Chainon”.  It needs to be clean and in decent condition.  Please attach a note to it that clearly says “donation”.  It’s important that good quality clothing stay in circulation as long as possible. Let’s keep it out of the landfill.

 

I design clothing because I love what I do and my designs allow women who love my work to feel creative and self expressed.  I make environmental decisions as a business woman all the time.  I feel like I can have a big (big in my little world) impact on the environment by applying my philosophy to my business decisions.

I purchase 90% Montreal made fabrics, threads, buttons and zippers. Yes Ladies, the textiles I use are actually made in Montreal.  It goes without saying, that all the cutting and sewing is done in Montreal as well.  I started buying Montreal textiles because I worked as a textile designer at a local knitting mill when I graduated from Concordia Fine Arts.  I fell in love with industrial production.  Now I love manufacturing.  I feel exhilarated by factories and industrial machines.  I am  proud to contribute to Canada’s manufacturing economy by producing over 2000 garments per year.

Thread and Fabric: I buy Montreal made thread because it supports local businesses, and because of its superior quality.  It doesn’t break in my sewing machines(Hooray!)  If you have ever sewn, you know how annoying it is to re-thread a sewing machine. It actually saves time using quality thread.  And finally, I buy Montreal made fabric because the carbon footprint of moving 150 rolls of fabric 5 km instead of 10’000 (how far is China anyway?), well that has to be worth something to Mother Earth.

I can’t do this alone, so I ask you, my clients, to make an effort to prolong the life of your clothes.

Love, Katrin

Jan
23

This project started with a phone call.  Can I make a mermaid dress for a graduation in New Jersey?  Sure.

Grace had been a client last summer. We met at my boutique when she purchased a long black dress with a pink flower print that I designed.  She told me she would be graduating in the study of Fish oils and omega-6.  Wow!  What we needed was a fish dress, not a mermaid costume.  I was very concerned that we make her a dress she could wear again to other occasions.

I started by researching images and colours for Fish oils.

I wanted to build a colour palette around a small piece of “fish scale” fabric that I had designed 10 years ago while working as a textile designer for Tricots Liesse. I guess I saved it for a special occasion like this.

I was able to make a pair of long opera sleeves, so the dress would be sleeveless and floor length.

 Below you can see the sleeves and the fabric choices, as well as some small silver fish I made out of silk, but didn’t use for the final dress.

I cut silk chiffon into bias strips and notched them.  This was the water.  On the final dress I distressed the chiffon slightly with a spray bottle of water and frayed the edges a bit.

I found three little green glass fish beads!  Yoohoo!  Combined with hours of setting Svarovsky crystals, we have ourselves a gala dress!

Oct
23

So much work goes into getting the circles perfectly round, the stitching symmetrical and the position pleasing to the eye.  The final appliqué looks effortless, artistic and attractive.  If only you knew the headaches, conversations and meetings this particular design has caused in the studio…and yet, I will be adding it to more Fall 2012 items since it’s appeal is powerful.  It has a chakra-like reference that I see only now.  Really, I was going for a classy, non-floral, referencing luxury and warmth.

Apr
17

I love making costumes.  They are challenging, but they are a fun distraction from production and administration.  These are some pics from a costume I made about 6 months ago for Valerie Laplante-Bilodeau, also known as Inertie.  She is one of the worlds top Cyr Wheel performers and she was looking for a new version of her classic costume.  She had been performing in a whitish-grey flowy pant and halter top combo.  We decided to stay with the grey, but add blues and golds and lots of hand sewn svarovski crystals.

These were my materials before I started:

I wanted to use really fancy materials for this one, so I chose some actual designer materials to start off:  Dolce Gabbana and Dior and Gucci textiles.  Ostrich feathers and Svarovski crystals.

My goal was to make her something sexy, comfortable, textured and fabulous!   I also made the headpiece with handsewn petals, lace and feathers.

http://www.inertie.ca

Aug
31

For those of you who do not know:  These are scarfettes!

They were invented by me, but the adorable term “scarfette” was coined by my dear friend Nadine.

They are also called mini-scarves, hair ties and ribbon-ties by my clients.

Their purpose is multiple.  They can simply be tied around your neck to add a little touch of class.  They can be used as headbands or pony-tail ribbons.  They can be tied onto a camisole at the strap on one side just above the bust adding a textile detail of colour.  Their uses are multiple.

They cost $8 each

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