With Fashion’s Night Out taking place in mere hours, people all over the city are busy making decisions. As I type, they’re trying to decide where to go for the night, how much time to spend at each store before dashing off to another one and whether or not they have the cash to taxi from one area to another.
Yorkville will host its own wing of FNO at the Shops on Hazelton Lane, an event put on by Toronto Fashion Incubator and MasterCard. Officially called The Shopping Soiree, everything from Skyy Vodka, Maybelline and Redken products, Perrier and SmartWater will be on hand as well as Flare editors dispensing style advice to the masses.
One of the clothing stores to participate in this particular FNO event, The Peacock Parade, was able to spare a few moments and chat about the huge night ahead of them. The exclusive Canadian based online boutique, where members get access to coveted designer goods for up to 70% off retail prices, is run by tranplants from Manhattan, the city that birthed Fashion’s Night Out four years ago.
The Peacock Parade founders Nancy Sahota and Jan Gandhi. Photo Credit: NewsWire
“We lived in New York for many years,” said co-founder Jan Gandhi. “We’ve experienced the excitement of FNO first hand. We began our discussions with FNO New York a few months ago to prepare for Toronto and here we are! We wanted to bring the same type of excitement for the retail industry.”
Having had worked with MasterCard Canada on a number of programs previously, the choice to partner with them again just seemed natural. Among the prizes shoppers have a chance at winning is a MasterCard prepaid card valued at $1,500 as well as a Kara Ross gift bag and Porter tickets.
Coming from a strictly online store both Gandhi and partner Nancy Sahota can’t wait to meet their customers face-to-face and, of course, find some new ones. Launched this past summer, the site regularly boasts labels and names like Fendi, Gucci, Prada and YSL and prices that keep customers coming back for more.
“We can’t wait to take our presence offline for a bit,” said Sahota. “It’s such a great opportunity to generate awareness not just for our business but for e-commerce in Canada. There’s definitely an energy about the night, it’s all about celebrating retailers.”
Joined by retailers from TFI and brand from TNT, the ladies will also be alongside designers Sid Neigum and Jameson Kane to present Fall 2012 collections. While their own event is one of the highlights of the night, Sahota and Gandhi are wrestling with the same party hopping plans as the rest of us.
“We would love to check out The Bazaar by Rac Boutique,” said Sahota. “We might even make it there!”
If simply attending a night of shopping and festivities seems head-spinning, the idea of planning and executing one is positively deadly. Pulling off the plans and production of their section of FNO came together in a matter of weeks and the women behind The Peacock Parade continually thank and praise their sponsors and participating retailers for making the impossible become one of the most anticipated nights of the year.
“We understand what it takes to work quickly,” said Gandhi. “Along with our committee, we have been able to complete the event preparations in weeks. The process has been smooth and we’ve had a great time planning. It definitely helps to have a great committee and the support of the City of Toronto and Vogue New York.”
Gandhi and Sahota will be at 87 Avenue Road in Yorkville. Ten per cent of purchases from TFI vendors and TNT will benefit the Elton John Aids Foundation and the AIDS Committee of Toronto. Spend more than $200 and get a special Fashion Cares 25th-anniversary retrospective book. Spend more than $500 and you’ll be eligible to win two VIP gala tickets to Fashion Cares on September 9 featuring Elton John (a value of $3,000), plus two VVIP passes to the after-party and two all-access event passes.
Bianca Teixeira writes about style for Toronto Standard. Follow her on Twitter at @BeeLauraTee.