Flavie Lechat is a young promising fashion designer from Montreal, Canada. She started sewing when she was a little girl, graduated from Marie-Victorin’s Fashion Design program and in 2010, participated to the “La Collection” reality show (inspired by the concept of Project Runway). She has strong opinions on the fashion industry and truly believes in Montreal’s fashion identity.
MadlyJuicy: What do you have to say about Montreal’s place in the fashion field?
Flavie Lechat: We are lucky to have influences from everywhere in the world. I think we should simply trust ourselves and proudly wear what we like. We are a very open minded community who accepts and appreciates different flavors; we have a thirst for culture as I have rarely seen elsewhere. We’re not afraid to be ourselves and to fight for what we believe in. The fashion industry at the moment is unhealthy for a multitude of reasons, but I think we can become leaders if we decide to take a different path.
MJ: After seeing you at “La Collection”, we had the chance to discover the lovely ready-to-wear clothes and accessories you created. A couple of years later, you finally decided to focus on tailored clothing. Did something discourage you from the ready-to-wear field?
F.L: To make a profit that would allow the line to continue growing in the long term seemed ambiguous, and when you’re in competition with China, it is almost impossible. I did not see how my line could be different from the others, or what positive effect it could have on the Quebec’s ready-to-wear market. The fashion industry, its mass production and the way clothing are consumed led me to think about what I wanted my approach to be, facing this industry as well as my place in this field. So, I decided to take a step back, slow down and build strong foundations. I have been sewing since I was 8-year-old and feel as if I’ll have a long career, but it’s taking a different path than I had imagined.
MJ: What convinced you to focus only on custom-made clothing?
F.L: I have a strong ability to understand the female body as well as an ease with draping and sewing. It’s very interesting to see each piece as a single project, to work directly with the client and try to understand exactly what it is that she is looking to express with the garment.
MJ: What would be the greatest creation someone could ask you to do for her?
F.L: My ideal custom made project would have to be a wedding dress, made of light materials such as cotton veil or silk, a flowy superpositions of noble materials. It would be handmade, with unlimited hours of work. I love the delicate, light and ethereal look of wedding dresses. I never really understood how women can lock themselves in huge polyester “cages” on their wedding day. It is very difficult to feel fulfilled and free when you can’t breathe. It’s always nice to be able to breathe on such an important day!
MJ: What do you think would be THE must have this season?
F.L: I would have to suggest two. First would be oversized, loosely knitted wool sweaters. The second would have to be scarves. Of all shapes and sizes, the key word here is materials, drop the prints and focus on the richness and softess of the fibers, the composition of the materials as well as the blend of colors, tie-dye scarves are going to be huge.