If you’re searching for one-of-a-kind fashions, home décor or art, you need look no further than Calgary. Yes, that’s right, Calgary. The city’s cadre of local designers and artists is growing, with thousands of budding Salvador Dalis and Coco Chanels who’ve made this city their home base.
LEAH BOHNET (Photo, left)
This 24-year-old Calgary native is an up-and-coming designer in the fashion world. Her line, Broken Doll Clothing, can be found locally as well as in Ontario, British Columbia and Newfoundland. Though Bohnet confesses to being a tomboy who has only ever worn heels once in her entire life, her clothing line is the epitome of the feminine.
Aimed at women who want to embrace their youthfulness, Bohnet uses styles like empire waists and floral prints in simple cuts like handkerchief skirts, baby doll dresses and dropped necklines. In Calgary you can find her clothes at these locations: Blubox, Shisomiso, and Splendid Boutique, 110, 2303 – 4 St SW.
MARK MULLIN (Photo, right)
Drawn to art because of the voice it gives him, Calgary-based 38-year-old Mark Mullin has been slowly etching his name as an artist to be reckoned with. Moving into the professional art sphere in 1992, he has solo exhibited in galleries across Canada, and is currently showing at VanDeb Editions Gallery in New York.
His paintings and drawings appear abstract at first, with seemingly mismatched shapes, textures and patterns in fiery yellows, pinks and oranges. But Mullin says his work is inspired by the realities of physics, chaos theory, biochemistry, graffiti culture and comics. You can see his current exhibit of etchings at the Paul Kuhn Gallery starting Oct 20.Local Finds (In scene)
ART WORK An Absorbing Time by Mark Mullin, 12” x 12” in mixed media on paper, $1,100, at the Paul Kuhn Gallery, which specializes in contemporary Canadian works (724 – 11 Ave SW).
You can find these books by local authors at McNally Robinson Booksellers on Stephen Avenue:
The Bone Sharps by Tim Bowling. A fictionalized paleontological biography, $27.95.
The Milk Chicken Bomb by Andrew Wedderburn. A funny and insightful look into the mind of a troubled ten-year-old, $21.95.
The Forgotten Ones by Douglas Ferguson. A rompy tale of religious figures assembling in Vancouver, $19.95.
Calgary: The Unknown City by James Martin. A look at Calgary’s deepest secrets, as well as funny anecdotes and insider advice, $18.95.
THE ENVELOPE BAG
In deep-brown cowhide leather, handcrafted and stitched by designer Sarah Shell, an emerging Calgary talent, whose label 442 McAdam, may have Gucci calling, $230 at Worth.
Fabric in Harry Dune by Whittaker Designs Calgary, $1,095 at Inglewood’s trendy Essential Living (1223B – 9 Ave SE).
Glass, in blue and gold by Rio, a group of artists outside of Bragg Creek, $99 at Galleria.
In coffee bean stain, $310 at Ingrained Style in Kensington, where all of their showroom and custom furniture is made locally (1145 Kensington Cres NW).
Heliconias, monstera leaves and curly willow, $75 at La Fleur in Art Central. Owner John Freriksen’s keen eye can put a modern, funky edge to any traditional arrangement.
Hand-painted in burnt orange by Larry Guterson, $195 at Galleria. This store in Kensington carries items from over 400 local and western Canadian artists.
Smoke-fired pottery by Loretta MacNab, a Bragg Creek artist that has been working with pottery for the last ten years, $80 at Galleria.
Black patent dress slings with a platform by local high-end designer label Arnold Churgin, $135.—Laura Pellerine