shoe man dan at Parkdale Flea

Daniel Charkow is @Shoe_Man_Dan on Instagram

Last Saturday (09 Dec 2017), Street Chic met 17yr year old shoe designer, Daniel Charkow of Charkow Shoes. Daniel is a design prodigy now gaining popularity on Instagram as @Shoe_Man_Dan.  Let it be known that at the time of this writing the young shoemaker has but a thousand followers, and this author was #1001. But Street Chic predicts that by December 2018 this prolific young craftsman will have several thousand followers, and that number will climb to a quarter million devotees by the time he’s age 19, at which point he can legally celebrate. Why? He’s an interesting young fellow well focused on making high fashion footwear from found materials.

When an artist works with found items its because they glimpse something in these objects that nobody else can fathom, and when a clever kid can turn clutter into couture, its newsworthy.

On that Saturday morning we met Daniel near Queen and Dufferin and went for a tour of the Parkdale Flea to see if the young cobbler could find some crafty ingredients for his next creation.

Shoe Man Dan at Parkdale Flea, Queen and Dufferin

Street Chic thinks Daniel is pretty cool – we’ve got an eye for wild style and confident clothing arrangements. When Dan showed up for our meeting he was rocking a faux fur jacket and well-altered converse running shoes over monogrammed socks. The tape across the tongue of his shoes says clearly ‘do not reuse this bag’!

shoe man dan on Instagram

Inside the Parkdale Flea, Saturday 09 December

At each vendor’s booth, Daniel would invariably look at the footwear for sale, and small shoe racks were like super magnets for this young designer.

shopping for shoes at Parkdale Flea in Toronto

Occasionally, and only after some prompting, Shoe Man Dan would share insights on the makes and models available on the shelf.

camo pattern pony hair bootsat Parkdale Flea

A fashion paradox, these size 6 green Jungle pattern camo patterned ladies heeled boots had pony hair fronts but braided leather backs with studded metal rivets. The vendor wanted sixty dollars, but this author reckons a crisp fifty-dollar bill would have secured them, tax free.

pony hair boot braided leather backs with studs, rivets

At this point in life, having only been a sentient being for a few years now, Dan is still sponging up knowledge about shoes. He scrutinizes all types of footwear looking for manufacturer’s secrets.
Already Daniel knows more about shoes than anyone else his age. He’s pursued shoemaking at the Art and Sole Academy in Toronto under the guidance of master instructor Jennifer Alison, where he took his skills to the next level and learned how to make shoes from scratch.

Last summer, Daniel completed the 2016 Summer Design Program at Parsons School of Design in New York City, and afterwards worked with the Brooklyn Shoe Space creating a comfortable men’s sneaker.

When shopping for shoes, the craftsman in Daniel looks at how the bottom is affixed to the top.  What holds the body of the shoe to its sole? Is the upper part fastened to the bottom inside the shoe with a Blake Stitch? or a Goodyear stitch? Or is there exterior welting to bind them together? Or were the shoes simply cemented together? as above. Daniel showed us examples of all types of modern manufacturing, and pointed out shoes that are very high quality but low design, and others that are flashy but destined to fall apart relatively quickly.

Inside the Parkdale Flea, which had only just opened its doors, and where the only other occupants were other vendors setting up their booths, Daniel led Street Chic on a quest for shoe crafting components and shared some little know facts about the business of making and selling footwear.

Roamer handbags at Parkdale Flea
Daniel Charkow is serious about sustainability and likes recycling old kitsch into new kicks.

old dining chair at Parkdale FleaIn the top corner of another vendors booth, or more accurately in the permanent workspace behind the temporary retail table, Daniel spotted his first real find of the morning. He pointed out an old dining room chair that was ‘showing us its heels’.

Inside Public Butter in Toronto

Next it was off to Public Butter at 1290 Queen St W, which is one of the finest vintage stores in Toronto. This shop is right around the corner from the flea market and easily spotted by the heap of rusting bicycles opposite the front door. At this venue Daniel got a second chance to shop for shoe-making ingredients.

fushia leather jacket at vintage store in TorontoPublic Butter has a vast collection of vintage clothing all organized by ‘type of thing’ and generally not sized or sorted into any subcategories. That makes the store rather ill-suited for hunting specifics, but perfect for finding surprises, and Daniel’s eyes were open.

finding surprises in vintage store in toronto

In here, Daniel palmed antique textiles while contemplating their potential as shoes. He handled dresses, suit jackets, sweaters and thick vinyl overcoats, but didn’t get too excited until he hit upon an old leather jacket in the back of the store.

Daniel Charkow at Public Butter

Buried deep in the back racks, a decades old Mount Allison high school football jacket caught Daniel’s eye. The deep burgundy jacket was in bad shape with the inner lining torn to shreds, and it was priced to sell at $20.


And so it came to pass that this author bought the jacket and donated its burgundy body to the young lad to see what comes … He can keep and sell the shoes himself, however, I’d like to see them auctioned off on Street Chic.

Daniel Charkow custom shoes from football jacket

Just before we published this article, Daniel sent a sketch showing the shoes he’s making with the old Mount Allison High School football jacket.

Country Inspired Fashion in Calgary Alberta

by Cailyn, Miss Teenage Calgary 2017

I live in Calgary and consider myself lucky when it comes to fashion. We have everything we need here including fancy evening dresses and country wear, which includes cowboy boots and, during The Calgary Stampede, a cowboy hat. Even for simply enjoying a Saturday night inside with the girls, you have to still go out and pick up that pizza, and so you have to look semi presentable.  That’s the look I find myself wearing more than I’d like to admit.

In Calgary, we have many diverse fashion styles; some folks like long, baggy shirts worn as a dress with a plaid around your waist, while others seem to always choose sweat pants and jersey tops. These styles are not gender specific and us younger ladies like to occasionally wear a man’s shirt or a blazer.

I have four different looks that I find myself wearing most frequently, and sometimes I mix them up and combine styles.

My first look is something you can wear to a casual event/ outing or you can dress it up with heels like I did or even a bit of jewelry like bracelets or a longer necklace since the front is quite plain and you’re good to go to a nice dinner.

The model is me, Cailyn. Here I’m wearing a shoulder less top which is a must in every girls closet during the summer (free those shoulders) but due to the fact that there is no hiding annoying bra straps I highly recommend a strapless bra, which I know can be tricky to keep up sometimes but your outfit will look so much better. The shirt is just a plain high waisted black skirt which gives you the freedom to tuck in your shirt or leave it untucked, the shirt I’m wearing was quite long, so I decided to have it tucked-in for a cleaner and more put-together look.

My second outfit is ‘country inspired’ and is something I find myself wearing quite often. This is a look I could wear for a day out, to the Calgary stampede or another local outing like many country-themed restaurants and bars we have in town. I chose a light coloured jeans and top because not only does it get less hot, the subtle notes make your boots pop. Regardless you could just as easily throw on some dark blue jeans and the outfit would still work.

Traditionally, with cowboy boots, I would wear boot cut jeans that cover them, but not and then I like to show them off by wearing tight jeans such as a ‘skinny jean’ to show those boots off. Also on a side note is like to add the fact that cowboy boots are one of my favorite shoes because they are versatile and functional but also they look great with jeans and if planned right they go amazingly well with a skirt or cute summer dress.

Cailyn on the Mustang workout clothes in CalgaryMy third look is street wear that is comfortable for an exercise  work-out and nice enough that you could wear outside and do your daily deeds. I went with white sweat pants because I feel like they are a great statement piece considering how often you actually see white sweatpants. I went with the white tank top to blend in under to make the black jersey standout more. Then I used the red bandana and lipstick to give the look a pop of color and as a standout piece. Also I swear by Converse running shoes, they are my absolute favorite sneakers because you can where them with anything at any time!Cailyn Miss Teen Calgary

For my last outfit I went for more of a classic look with the 50s style red dress. You can wear it whenever and its light enough to wear in the summer and once winter rolls around you can throw on some leggings or thighs and put on an old style knitted jacket (the one I have reminds me of a sock monkey)

I think my favorite part about any of these outfits is that you can wear them anytime and dress them up or down due to your mood and what you are dressing for. ​

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featured image in Montreal blue coral dress for boyfriend

Ste-Catherine Street Style in Montreal, Quebec

by Stefanie, Miss Teenage Quebec 2017

Where to start when it comes to Montreal fashion? Montreal is one of the trendiest cities in Canada. It is the Milan of Italy, the London of England and the Paris of France but with a twist; it is where all three meet under one awe-inspiring location: Montreal. Its streets are filled with beautiful and fashionable people. With its European flavor, fashion styles seem to be more trendy and unique.

The people of Montreal go further with their fashion by meshing styles together and creating their own designs. This is why ‘street style’ is very popular in Montreal. Big fashion brands like Aldo, Dynamite, Garage, Le Chateau, Mackage and Rudsak have their headquarters here, and draw inspiration from the culture outside their offices; its from Montreal they’ve all made their mark on Canadian fashion.

Ste-Catherine Street

Ste-Catherine Street is without a doubt one of the liveliest streets in Montreal. It runs 11.5 km long located in the heart of downtown Montreal where you can find a vast array of shops for both brand names and one-of-a kind boutiques. It crosses the central business district from west to east and runs parallel to the largest segments of Montreal’s underground city. It is the longest commercial street in Canada.

fashion in the city of Montreal

Dress: H&M
Shoes: Michael Kors
Purse: Louis Vuitton

This 26 year old model is Christina, my older sister! My sister has truly been a big inspiration to me and is definitely one of my role models. I look up to her everyday, but one thing I really look up to  is her style and fashion. I love my sister’s style; she is currently studying at Concordia University. She lives with her boyfriend and spends lots of time with her family and friends. She is very sociable and is one of the most kindhearted people I know.  Wearing a coral blue dress with a little bow on her top left shoulder, the garment is loose fitting and casual, perfect for a date-night. Since Christina is tanned, the light blue colour matches perfectly with her skin tone making her stand out. She was popping her style while strolling down Ste-Catherine street on a beautiful sunny day.

Michael Kors beige pumps sandle wood by the old marble fountains in Montreal

Christina has beige Micheal Kors pumps, and the colour complements her skin perfectly and matches her dress. The shoes have ankle straps and retail for $198.

white cotton dress beside old fountain in Montreal

Dress: Forever 21
Shoes: Steve Madden

Yay to another summer dress! My beautiful model Christina is wearing a white dress from forever 21. It is an off the shoulder short dress with lace details on the edges. She was , again, walking along Ste- Catherine street on a warm day.  I love when there is a contrast between the clothing colour and the skin tone; the white colour makes Christina stand out once again. Michael Kors shoes in fashion in Montreal 2017This casual yet flirty wear is perfect for an every day outing retailing at only 30$. This is proof that you don’t need to spend a lot of money on a good outfit! She is also wearing my favourite Steve Madden sandals with different coloured straps around the ankle. These shoes are a perfect summer staple and can easily match well with any summer outfit!

My own fashion,

The model in this photo is myself! I am a bubbly and outgoing person who loves to travel and explore different countries and cultures. I am a 17 year old student currently enrolled at Champlain college. I’m the athlete and soccer enthusiast who plays professionally for my province.

Dress: Forever 21
Glasses: Giorgio Armani
Shoes: Adidas NMD

My athleticism usually calls for comfort, hence why my style leans towards comfy casual. I am wearing a pink t-shirt dress from forever 21 and white adidas running shoes. This type of outfit is definitely one of my favourites as it is comfortable and fashionable as well! The dress is $24.90 and the shoes retail at $200.  My sunglasses have a mirror finish and the shape matches well with my rounded face. They complement this look very well as they have a rose gold finish that goes well with the colour of my dress.

What is fashion for me?

Fashion cannot be defined by one sentence because there are so many different kinds of styles out there! I believe that the choice of an individuals clothing is a mean to express themselves. Every persons choice of style, design or trend is a way of introducing who they are, their choice of taste and even what kind of music they like. One’s clothing is like a picture; it’s worth a thousand words. What we wear is how we want to present ourselves. It is a way to find our identity by mixing different styles together to figure out what we like and who we are. It defines us! Fashion is more than just a piece of clothing! My body is a canvas in which I try new things every day to make the perfect match of what I  like to wear. There is no wrong or right fashion style, there is just you.

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fashion for the movie theatre in Medcine Hat Alberta

The Many Fashions of Medicine Hat Alberta

By Nyamal, Miss Teen Medicine Hat 2017

“I like to push the barriers when it comes to fashion” – Nyamal

I could not have said it better myself.  Fashion is an expression of both emotion and character. Every person alive adds more flavour to the world of fashion by daring to be unapologetic and adding their own flare to their outfits.

With this definition in mind, I could not have found better individuals to take part in this article with me.

Our first model is Mervat, a 19 year old college student who aspires to be a paramedic. She is outgoing, talkative, supporting, and the type of person who fills the room with energy simply by entering.

For this shoot we’d agreed to take photos at six pm on College Dr. She decided to wear something a little more casual sporting vintage denim jeans with a “Bad influence” graphic halter top with threaded roses. She had purchased her trendy top at Urban Planet and thrifted her Levi jeans from a friend. She accessorizes with a pair of sunglasses and beaded flower sandals. Adding a bit of colour with a camel, braided leather belt from Bluenotes she managed to create an outfit that’s tré cute but manageable.

I think my favourite thing about this look is that it’s inexpensive, quick to put together, and comfortable. All three things that are important when considering an outfit that will take you from the busy, lesson filled days to late night study sessions as a college student.

Bad inlfuence in Medicine Hat AlbertaI choose to take photos of her at the college because it holds a lot of memories and emotions for me and many others. Medicine Hat College offers a place of enjoyment and learning for its students and hatters alike. In the summer it provides camps for children and preteens. It also holds academic assistance for middle-schoolers and high-schoolers during the school year – I for one owe my successful school year to the program and study groups I was able to have at the college. Not only does the college act as a beacon of educational success but it adds more multiculturalism to our city with the many international students it holds.

With a mixture of retro and modern trend Merv rocks a confident and casual street style for a summer afternoon.

black body suit and dark blue denim jean shorts fashion in Medicine Hat albertaOur second look today is at Belle an 18 year old free spirit who is hands down one of the most exciting people you will ever meet. She is a dedicated hard worker currently holding two jobs at David’s Tea and Marshalls, both located in Medicine Hat mall. With a great love for friends and a soul meant to wonder she loves to take adventures. Being the wildheart she is she loves to take risks with her style. Today she decided to pair a fitted cotton-mesh black bodysuit from Garage with dark denim Hollister jean shorts and simple black flip flops for a cute summer look. A flattering outfit for checking out the nightlife downtown with friends.

For accessories, she gives us a small, grey, textured Guess coin purse with stunning shimmering and beige nails to give the look a little more glam factor.

The third look was created by Jordyn, an intelligent young lady that carries a sense of mature, calm about herself. Jordyn is 18 years old and currently working at the Cineplex before attending University in the Fall. She enjoys reading, soccer, driving, and listening to some of her favourite musicians such as 21 pilots and Halsey. She is a witty and creative individual with an amazing talent for painting. With a style that’s typically a little more alternative and hipster, Jordyn brings a blue and white graphic tee referencing the classic film Clueless complimented by a denim pairing of shorts and a baseball cap.Whatever shift on blue tie dye patterm t shirt Medicine Hat Alberta

She adds to the outfit with a pair of white and pink Nike trainers. Some may be against rips in clothing but I personally feel that a tear like this gives the top a small but adequate amount of character.

Credit for where you can purchase the clothing is given to Forever 21 for the shirt and Garage for her jeans.

Jordyn has a casual outfit with just a bit of edge; its perfect for catching a flick at the movies.

wheat foreground, lady poses in M3edicine hat with blue jeans cap and cotton shirt, tank top

 

Eighteen year old Micayla involves herself in anything that revolves around the arts; it’s no wonder she’s able to wear such a bright coloured clothes and look stunning in daring outfits. The future student of Calgary University describes her overall style as more European inspired although she pulls inspiration from everywhere. blue jeans ball cap, round sunglasses and red shirt collar , pretty girl in Medicine Hat Alberta

For one of her looks Micayla sports a red v neck came from Garage costing $10.00 with an American Apparel bomber jacket that had costed her $120.00. For bottoms she styles Levis wedgie fit denim at the price of $130.00 and adds unique flare and colour with the addition of her $30.00 Topshop floral pink mule heels. She accessorizes this look with Guay Australia round frame shades and a Calvin Klein denim hat. The sunglasses prices at $75.00 and the cap at $45.00. This look is as high-end and beautiful as her second look.

 

For her second look, Micayla paired her vibrant floral heels with a full Topshop outfit consisting of a white ¾ sleeve ribbed, high neck sweater with blue suit cigarette trousers. Her outfit total being $30.00 for the top and $60.00 for the bottoms. She also uses a silver ring from south Africa and a black leather purse for accessories.blue cigarette trousers with white top in Medicine Hat Alberta

The way the pink heels and vibrant blue bottoms compliment each other is simply stunning.

gas lamps in downtown medicine Hat albertaDue to the artistic nature of Micayla and Jordyn some photos of the trio took place in front of the Esplanade located on 1 St SE. The Esplanade holds art shows, concerts, plays, and other events. It is a cultural hub open to all and meaningful to many.

Other photos were all taken on 2 St WE in downtown Medicine Hat from 8 to 9 pm. I felt this was the perfect place to take photos because the beauty of the streets, the gas lights, and it is also the location one of our long standing local business.

The Monarch Theatre is Canada’s oldest operating movie theatre. The theatre remains relevant playing new movies and also allows viewers to enjoy classical films now and then. Many citizens in the Hat hold fond memories here such as watching movies together with their father or spending times with friends.

gas lights in Medicine Hat AlbertaThe gas lights brighten up the streets of downtown Medicine Hat, and serve as a reminder of the importance of natural gas to the city.

Although we may not be a bustling fashion district, inspiring the next fall fashion week, we are a city filled with quality characters, risk takers, and unique fashions. Medicine Hat is a small city with a rich history and many beautiful locations as well as amazing people. Being able to spend time with my models and take a minute to appreciate our surroundings I think it’s safe to say that Medicine Hat has a lot to offer via fashion and amazing personality.

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Chavez Shoes

Chavez Shoe Fitters are Transition Ankle Straps

by Joanna Szeen, photographer named Victor Gonzales.

Melissa is a young executive currently working for Shoes by Chavez, a locally owned Canadian shoe brand that is gaining popularity here and abroad. With many responsibilities within the growing company, she is constantly on the go.  This lady needs a gorgeous shoe that can transition from casually simple to sexy and glam. She can do that with Chavez Shoes’ transition ankle straps.

Chavez Shoes , shoe fitters2

First let’s observe how Melissa has paired her Shoes by Chavez with cuffed jeans, white clutch and a white graphic t-shirt.  This author really likes Melissa’s outfit, which looks incredibly comfortable and the jeans look very soft. Her t-shirt also looks soft and falls naturally over her body in a very flattering way. The graphic on the front of her shirt is very eye-catching and brightens up her look, which ties in the subtle glam of her closed toed shoes.

Now these ankle straps Melissa adds are what Chavez calls “Shoe Fitters”.  Shoe Fitters are an ankle strap that you can fit to your shoe to customize your look with every wear.

Chavez Shoes , shoe fitters1

These Shoe Fitter ankle strap attachments are sold separately for about $20 each and are used to transform existing heels with a new style and design. The attachment also adds more functionality to your heels when you walk.

The graphic on the chunky heel of the closed toed shoe is what really makes this whole thing pop. When you see Melissa you know she is beautiful. When your eyes are drawn from her head down to her shoes you know she’s very Street Chic.

Shoe Fitters Can Freshen Up Your Shoe Fashion

Shoe Fitters are also a really great way to keep your favourite shoe fresh! You can add shoe fitters as an accessory to coordinate with your outfit.

I love that you can add an extra pop with the matching graphic Shoe Fitters. I think this look is extremely fierce. Any time you add an accessory to make yourself stand out. It’s not extra, it’s attitude. This attitude and look is very confident and very glam. Chavez Shoes , shoe fitters3

The nude Shoe Fitter is subtle, because sometimes you just want a simple look that makes your ankles look slim and flattering. Nude goes with everything and can be worn a lot more frequently than an eye popping graphic, which also makes this third look very practical.

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