Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Getting to know...Aria

So, I think everyone has an uncle/aunt/cousin/friend/brother/sister who is totally lame, and can't get it together, and is always bouncing cheques and getting fired from really pathetic jobs, and they're, like, 47.

You kind of look at their life, and it makes you feel a little better about what you're doing with your own. Then you meet someone like Aria, who at only 18 has been designing and hand-making jewelry for roughly five years, and you start to feel a liiiiiittle bit more like YOU are the pathetic one.

Seriously though, we don't expect everyone to have their life mapped out by 18, that's no fun, but it's kind of exciting when you meet someone who's got it together, it kind of makes you get off your ass and do something!

Aria has always been passionate about her work and feels that jewelry is truly a wearable art. In December of 2005 she did her first real show and it was a huge success. In the spring of 2006 she showed at Le Marche MTL's F+Art (Fashion + Art, for all you potty mouths out there...) Most of Aria-Jewelry's materiel's are semi-precious and imported glass, which allows for only limited amounts, making each piece of jewelry something special.

I think the photos speak for themselves, this is some classy yet fun jewelry, I can't wait to get some for myself!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Getting to know...NaMoDA

Who says Toronto and Montreal are rivals!? We just met a great girl from Toronto named Monika Sosinski, who does the line NaMoDA. We're gonna make this real simple for you guys...

NaMoDA=Confident Style, Free Thought and Elegant Artistry

Combining ecologically safe, organic, and recycled fabrics with the unique vision of a conscious confident individual, NaMoDA produces a distinctive clothing line that stands out from the masses. Clothing that inspires people to forge together artistic and personal expression, organic technology, deep-rooted classics and modern individuality. Liberating our clientele aesthetically as well as socially by offering the choice of the path less traveled. High Quality handcrafted Limited Edition and One of a Kind pieces with exceptional attention to detail.

Basically, cool shit that will make people stop you on the street and ask you what the hell you're wearing...who doesn't love that?!

Check out NaMoDA at Headquarters this June, we've got the first shipment of skirts and purses, and will be receiving mens items in May, just in time for our opening day!

Getting to know...Valerie Dumaine

Last Tuesday we had the pleasure of meeting the wonderful Miss Valerie Dumaine, Montreal designer extraordinaire! Although Marc Simard tried to get her and all the other girls to do tequila shots (I'm the only one who succumbed) she kept her cool and for that we're ever grateful! I've been eyeing her designs in boutiques in Montreal ever since I moved here, getting more impressed by the season.

Valerie has been involved in the Montreal fashion scene for over six years, during which time, she worked as an illustrator, pattern maker and designer for various companies. Back in 1998 she took off for London where she did an internship with designer Gaile McConaghie. After finishing a certificate in German at UQAM in 2002, she was once again Europe bound. She moved to Berlin where after a few months she embedded herself in the German fashion environment and its underbelly. Upon her return, there was no way she was going to work back in the Chabanel district! (for those of you non-Montrealers, this is the very weird "fashion" district, most companies are run by crazy ego-maniac men. Not the most pleasant creative environment, and very hard to find a job that is satisfying) She decided to work on her own line and in spring 2004 Valerie Dumaine (the collection) was finally born!

Valerie Dumaine proposes a strong image, elegant and clean design embellished by original silk printed designs. These designs add a unique and rebelious touch to the feminine silhouette. In every collection, a different artist participates in the creation of prints and uses it as a showcase to display their art. Valerie Dumaine allows a big place for collaboration between artists and hopes that this idea will be contagious!

Her 2006 Spring-summer collection reflects naivety and candour using light and transparent fabrics, such as linen, cotton and jersey. Embellished with buttons, gathered details and shirring, the skirts, shirts and blazers are offered in coral, pistachio and lemon. Artist Jonathan Vinet adds a pop touch to the garments with childlike graphic prints, stripes, lines and dots. This cute and sweet line is perfect for rebel lolitas!

Her Collections are available in Halifax, Montreal, Quebec city, Ottawa, Toronto, Edmonton and Brooklyn, NY.

Check out more of Valeries designs at and, of course, in our store opening June 1st.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Getting to know you update.

So, things are getting closer to go time. For those of you who have been living blindfolded, gagged and bound in a cave, "Getting To Know You" will be H.Q.'s first group exhibition. Opening July 8th and running until August 4th, 2006, representing talent from all over the globe. Here's a list of some of the artists who will be showing:

Garrette Van Winkle
Jarred Eberhardt
Jason Kennett
Shawn "Ako" Wisenant
Josh Taylor
Team Macho
Bob London
James Kerr
Jen Storey
Neil Doshi
Angie Mason
Dessa Harhay
Aaron McConomy
Richard Stow
Aya Kakeda
Fred Casia
Kristen Brown
James Braithewaite
Myna Sonu
Pete Thompson
Mike Bertino
Kristen Farrell
Melissa DelPinto
Mark Unterburger
Stephanie Nadeau
Eddie Ayoub
Lisa Dejohn
Paper Tiger A & D
Marc Bell
Stephan Harhay
S. Phansavanh
Paul Zacharias
Melissa Matos
James "Thesis" Kirkpatrik
Daniel Hyun Lim
Cailin Burns
Amy Sol
Sarah Taylor
...and more.
If you want to check out thier work feel free to hit thier websites or try that Google thing I've been hearing so much about. (If you ask me it's just a fad, like the hula hoop).

Monday, April 17, 2006

Getting to know... Squidfire!

To all our future male customers, fear not, we have not forgotten you! We've just received our first order in a nondescript brown box, inside of which are tons of great t-shirts from Squidfire. Here's what they have to say for themselves:

"Born in the summer of 2004, Squidfire was the brain child of Jean-Baptiste Regnard and Kevin Sherry. Squidfire's purpose was to offer the public alternatives to shopping malls and corporate giants, our focus is quality, comfort and individuality. All of our images are designed by hand and printed by hand, using manual presses. Since each shirt is given individual attention, we prefer to think of them as truly unique wearable art. Our first run of shirts was launched in May 2005, featuring an unusually large selection, so you're bound to find one that catches your eye. We've been featured in many independent clothing boutiques before our website was live, the response has been overwhelming and we think you'll enjoy our products very much."

Sounds like a damn good start to us, here's what they're up to now:

"UPDATE! March 28, 2006 - Squidfire Inc. is very pleased to be entering into its second year of business. From being sold at 25 stores internationally to dealing with extreme temperatures in our warehouse, we've had a strong educational first year in business. We're deeply grateful to all of those who have supported us throughout the year and to all of those who have met us at the various festivals we've peddled at. We're happy to bring you Squidfire 2006 and hope you continue to support us."

That's what we like to hear, good people making good things happen, offering better options to the masses!

Check our their stuff at:

Getting to know ... Angel Perez

So once again, the Winnipeg connection bears much fruit.

Our friend Owen Wilson.. I mean Jason Kennett... brought the work of the wonderful Angel Perez to our attention. Although we've never met Angel in person, we love what we've seen of her work, and Roy Liang of Dumb Chauffeur has also given her the thumbs up.

We will be the first Montreal store to carry Angels designs, and from what she has hinted at via e-mail, there is some VERY fun stuff on its way!!!

Check out Angels designs in June when we open our doors to the world!

Friday, April 14, 2006

Getting to know... Lisa DeJohn

O.K. if you were given the choice what super power would you want..... invisibility or the power of flight? Think about it. Both are pretty cool. Like if you could turn invisible, you could break into Walmart and steal all of thier cash and if you were persistent, maybe even eventualy bankrupt those bastards. Mind you, you would have to travel all over the world and continualy rob them night after night. O.K. so maybe there are better things to do with that power... like sneak into locker rooms, maybe haunt a house, tip toe onto airplanes... y'know.

And of course if you had the power to fly, well you could go anywhere. Assuming you could fly really fast and didnt get tired. Traffic would be a thing of the past for you. No more bus/metro pass.

This has nothing to do with Lisa's work. It was just on my mind right now. What? It's my blog I'll do whatever I feel like, O.K.?!

Lisa DeJohn is an artist originally from Detroit, Michigan. For the past ten years she lived in Portland, Oregon where she began her career as a painter, designer and mixed media artist. She draws inspiration from plant forms, animals, architectural structures and vintage ephemera. Her freelance design work includes clients such as Vigo Cards, Pinball Publishing and Converse Inc.
Lisa currently lives in Massachusetts near the coast with her boyfriend and two dogs. When she’s not working on art and design projects, she enjoys cooking, reading blogs, playing with her pups and searching junk shops for materials.

You can see Lisa's gorgeous work at the H.Q. group exhibition "Getting To Know You" july 8th.

Getting to know... Mark Unterberger

Lately, I've been having the most amazing dreams. A couple of nights ago my whole dream was in video game mode and I was fighting hordes of zombies! And kicking some ass!! Now, in the dream I just woke up from, I was battling Dr. Octopus with my trust light sabre alongside Luke Skywalker! I dont know if Mark would appove of the killing of Dr. Octopus though. (I'm sad to say but me and Luke won that battle).

Mark Unterberger is currently working as a makeup special fx artist in Montreal, Quebec. His work ranges from prosthetic makeup and practical special effects to illustration, painting and sculpture. Mark likes octopuses and squids, a lot. He would like you all to take some time to think about the impact that the actions of your daily lives have on the world’s oceans and the creatures that live within. Ban Bottom Trawling.

Check out Marks website:

And see his work at the first group show "Getting To Know You" July 8th at H.Q.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Getting to know...Beck(y)

Founded in 2003 and headquartered in New York City, Beck(y) is a shrewdly designed collection of handcrafted,one-of-a-kind bags and accessories constructed with recycled skateboards and plush, high-end fabrics.

The brainchild of visionary designer Beck Hickey, Beck(y)'s product matrix currently features three women's handbags including a square mini-tote, curved mini-tote and clutch, as well as two unisex messenger bags and an assortment of belts, belt buckles and money clips. Just like skateboarding, all Beck(y) products are functional art.

Beck's long-time attraction to skateboarding and its surrounding lifestyle is another factor that motivated her to establish her product line. "Skateboarding has always fascinated me because of its creative, individual nature," she continues. "From an artistic standpoint, I love board graphics, and when I was younger I'd spend hours at my local shop admiring every detail of artwork on the newest shipment of decks."

Beck(y)'s aptly named sk8bags are hand made by Beck in her New York workshop. It's a very time-consuming, labor-intensive process and she counts her lucky stars that she still has all ten fingers. Although she washes the decks and removes the grip tape, Beck stresses, "I don't add anything to the decks and can say with a clear conscience that I'm simply reusing something that was already there." Altering the decks as little as possible throughout the production process is extremely important because she strives to always uphold the integrity of her source material.

To keep the recycled decks coming her way, and to give back to the skateboarding community at the same time, Beck established the Boards 4 Bowls program. For every used board she receives Beck donates $3 to a variety of non-profit organizations dedicated to building and maintaining public skateparks across the country. Beck currently works with the Tony Hawk Foundation, Jeff Anderson Memorial Fund and Elemental Awareness.

So not only is this a super amazing idea, the the end products look amazing too, EXTREMELY well made. Tyson and I already had to smack our own hands to stop ourselves from keeping a purse and money clip for ourselves instead of selling them in the store! Come down to the store in June and see them for yourself, each items is COMPLETELY one of a kind!

Getting to know...Local by Kristin

Local by Kristin is another line from a talented Winnipeg artist/designer. Can't beat that Winnipeg connection!

Originally from Whitby Ontario, Kristin is a graduate of the Emily Carr Institute in Vancouver and has recently moved to Winnipeg to be a part of its friendly artscommunity.


for phone booths on every corner
for traffic lights on bridges
for frozen eyelashes
for cheap housing
for help out of snowbanks
for small airports
for warm buses
for real thrift stores
for seven digit phone numbers
for hibernating.

Some of Kristins recent interests include drag kings, painting and finding out why we all love
Tim Hortons so much.

As I write this, Kristins designs are flying from Winnipeg to Montreal with the ever helpful Roy Liang of Dumb Chauffeur, can't wait to see them in person!!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Getting to know...Salvor Fauna

One of the saddest things in the world is when people come over to our house and want to play with our dog, but they're allergic, and then they get all weepy and puffy, but they still want to play with him 'cause he's so damn cute, but you can tell they are seriously suffering. I feel really bad for them, especially since our dog seems to sense it and acts extra cute, like resting his head on their knees and stuff.

For all you allergy sufferers out there, we've found the most stylish yet fur free solution around: pillows by Salvor Fauna.

These beauties hail from Brooklyn and are handscreened on a variety of different cottony woven fabrics. Not only of the dog variety, these pillows are available in a huge variety of animalia. We're starting off with a modest selection of mostly dogs, but check back often, our stock will be growing to zoo size quickly.

Cuddly, won't drool on you, and will NOT give you puffy eyes, what the hell more do you want out of us!

Getting to know....MISS

What would happen if you took the essence of New York and London, and blended them up into some kind of frothy beautiful accessories line? Well a girl named Jen decided to try it out, in the most literal of ways. Influenced by the post-handicraft movement, Made In Shoreditch Somewhere is an accessories label that fuses craft techniques with luxury fabrics and trims.

Jen tells it like it is:
" I moved to London in September of 2001 from New York City. Originally from Brooklyn, I was quite happy living in my bubble up until I reached 20, when I felt that if I didn't do something to drastically change my life, I would go insane with boredom. I had been studying fashion design since I was 14 and was completely burnt out. Taking a passing conversation with a fellow student a bit too seriously, I applied at the London College of Fashion (with hopes to finish my BA degree there) and when I got accepted, I was more than ready to start my life over."

What was initially created solely for a college project had rolled over into real life when Jen started making accessories from the leftover trims and materials. "It was quicker and more fun to make accessories than clothing. I've been designing and making clothing for so long, I wanted to try something new, but bring across the skills and techniques that I already had." Heavily influenced by the punk rock scene, the original Miss items, which consisted of wristcuffs and chokers were a contrived version of what is out now. Raw-edged and paint splattered, the accessories were more a tribute to the rising popularity of deconstructing clothing at the time. These were showcased on theChipfactory Design Collective website, which to this day the label is still a member of. The development of the wristcuffs have come a long way since its conception and has since expanded into other similar type accessories such as brooches, hair accessores, and belts.

We think the pictures speak for themselves, but we can't wait to see her stuff in person (and of course try it on and dance around the store....that's Tyson, not me...just picture it... he looks great!)