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Campus Celebrity: Avenir Designs

Capital Catwalk is just one day away! We are so excited to announce that we will be featuring looks from Avenir Designs! Get to know this spunky mom and daughter duo before the big night!

Donna (left) and her daughter Micaela (right)

The Stats:
Name: Avenir Designs – “Fashions for the Rhythm of your Life!”
Boutique Name: Avenir Design Studio (96 Mill Street) 
Home Base: Almonte, Ontario  

Her Campus: Can you tell us where we can get our hands on your designs? 
Avenir Designs: Customers can contact us by either emailing us at [email protected] or by checking out our website where clients can keep up to date with AVENIR’s newest collections. You can also visit us at our boutique, AVENIR Design Studio, located in scenic Almonte.

HC: Tell us more about yourselves! How did you get into fashion and who’s idea was it to collaborate and work together?
AD: AVENIR Designs is a mother/daughter duo. Micaela, who is the head designer, received a bursary to go to Huddersfield University in England to study fashion. Upon her return, I had asked her to create a summer collection as I had wanted to test the waters to see if we could in fact create a business in the fashion industry. Our first collection “Cadence” was a hit with its eye catching colour blocking and unique multi-wear pieces. This launched AVENIR Designs and allowed us to get to where we are today.

HC: We think it’s so inspiring that you work together and have created such a successful company. Can you give us any tips on how to work with someone that you’re close to without letting work conflict affect your relationship?
AD: Micaela and I have to look at this as a business. We put our personal affairs aside when we are working. She does all the creative work and design tasks and I deal with the manufacturing and company affairs. To work together, each person needs to work within their strengths but at the same time be open to constructive criticism which enables us to grow.

HC: Can you tell us more about your line, Avenir Designs? What are your current favourite pieces in the line? 
AD: AVENIR Designs is a Canadian women’s apparel company out of Ottawa, Ontario providing fun quality multi-wear clothing that fits the “rhythm of your life.” Our designs are sophisticated, comfortable and unique. The “out of the box” design construction makes the garment adjust to flatter any women’s body shape. Structured cuts draped into pleats and asymmetrical lines distinguish the outfits that breathe freedom in the women’s motion. The garments can be transformed to function as casual daywear or sophisticated work wear. Our goal is to remain Canadian designed and Canadian manufactured. Since we are now moving into the Spring/Summer season, My (Donna) favourite piece is the “Daisy Day” dress; the perfect go to dress for the summer. The knee length tank dress can be worn back to front for a different neckline with lace accents at the side seams. For the chilly evenings when I’m out, I take along the “Waterfall” multi-wear cardigan where I can change the look depending on the mood. Micaela on the other hand loves the “Trillium” printed tunic. She loves the fact that you can wear this piece back to front to get a completely different look. She pares the tunic with our “Huna” pant.

HC: This is your first time partnering with us for our annual charity fashion show. What made you decide to get on board and what are you most looking forward to on January 30th? 
AD: The charity that you are representing shows values and we have a personal appeal as I am (Donna) a recent cancer survivor. Charity work also falls within my (Donna’s) personal Christian faith journey. We are most looking forward to meeting new and fantastic women. We always love talking to new people, discussing their fashion needs which helps us to build and grow as a brand.

HC: Can you give us a hint as to what we can expect to see from you on the runway at Capital Catwalk? 
AD: We will be presenting our new Spring/Summer 2016 Collection entitled “Wunderlust” along with our present Winter line “Urban Nomad”. We will show you how versatile our multi wear lines are for today’s woman.

HC: What are your top three styling tips for being practical/warm in the winter while still looking chic? 
AD: Micaela suggests the best way to stay warm and look chic during the winter months is to invest in a good pair of gloves or mittens. I love to buy mittens in fun, vibrant prints pared with my slouchy beanie embellished with my grandmother’s vintage brooches. 

HC: What is your go-to look on those days when you’re running late? 
AD: Micaela’s go-to look would be wearing a comfortable tunic, a pair of skinny pants and her new favorite slouchy cardigan, topping the look off with an accessory or two as she dashes out the door. Donna on the other hand loves her funky leggings with a long slouchy top with her favorite scarf wrapped around a couple of times. 

HC: What do you think is one staple piece that every woman needs to have in her closet?
AD: The one staple piece that every woman needs in her closet is a garment that makes her feel comfortable and beautiful when she puts it on. You are never fully dressed without a SMILE.

HC: It’s time for the This or That! round! Get ready:
Starbucks or Tim Horton’s:
– Donna: neither
– Micaela: Tim Horton’s 
Spring or Fall:
– Donna: I live in the country therefore I definitely love the fall. The crisp air and the fallen leaves make this season enjoyable to be outdoors. 
– Micaela: Fall is by far the best season with the pretty fall colours and the perfect temperatures to enjoy the outdoors.
East or West Coast: 
– Donna: East Coast. People are definitely friendly there plus I was born in New Brunswick.
– Micaela: East Coast
Parkas or Peacoats:
– Both: Peacoat; classic and stylish.
Toques or Earmuffs: 
– Donna: Earmuffs. Doesn’t mess with my hair 
– Micaela: Toques, but they have to be slouchy. 

Tickets to Capital Catwalk can still be purchased online! Check out our Eventbrite page and as a special treat – use the coupon code OTTAWA50 to receive a 50% discount! Valid on student, general and VIP tickets. 


Photos: provided by Avenir Designs. 

Zoe Crego

U Ottawa '17

Zoë held the position of President of Her Campus at uOttawa from 2015-2017 and was a Senior Chapter Advisor. She graduated from the University of Ottawa in 2017 and has pursued a career in the Canadian federal public service. She is very grateful to Her Campus for providing a creative outlet while studying and believes her experience with Her Campus helped her grow professionally and personally.    
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