Celebrity/Designer · Heart Truth Family

Heart Truth family spotlight: Allison Grafton and Malika Rajani

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Allison Grafton is the president and owner of Rockwood Custom Homes. She is married to her husband Kevin and is a dedicated mother of three children. In 2009, Allison turned her passion into a business, having built and/or renovated more than 12 homes over the course of 15 years in her “spare” time.

Recognized for her leadership and entrepreneurial prowess, Allison has been the recipient of many national and local awards. In 2013, Allison was shortlisted as finalist for the E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, Prairies Region, and later that same year, became one of WXN’s Top 100: Canada’s Most Powerful Women. In 2014, Allison again took home WXN honours as well as becoming one of Business in Calgary’s Leaders of Tomorrow and a top three placement as part of PROFIT/Chatelaine Magazine’s W100 Canada’s Top Female Entrepreneurs. In 2015, Allison again made the cut for PROFIT/Chatelaine’s W100, placing 4th of 100 women leaders in Canada, won the prestigious RBC Women of Influence Momentum Award and for the third year in a row, took home WXN Top 100 honours. 

In 2016, Allison was inducted in the WXN Top 100 Hall of Fame and was also awarded a Silver Stevie© Award for Top Female Entrepreneur in Canada.

Allison is passionate about health and well-being and is an active mentor for young business women via the WXN organization.

Allison is passionate about health and well-being; she is a member of the Tiffany’s Circle of women philanthropists for the Canadian Red Cross and an active mentor for young business women via the WXN organization.

Malika is one of our legacy designers who is designing two pieces for our 2017 event. Previously featured in our post here, Malika is a vibrant woman who has become an integral member of the Heart Truth family.

Want to connect to Allison? Reach out through her LinkedIn and Facebook

Want to connect with Malika? Reach out through Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn or her website.

You can see Allison in Malika’s design by attending and supporting the Heart Truth Fashion Show on February 11, 2017. Purchase your ticket here.

From our hearts to yours,

The Heart Truth Calgary Family

Celebrity/Designer · Heart Truth Family

Heart Truth family spotlight: Wendy Bélanger and Natasha Lazarovic

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To quote Wendy Bélanger, “Be prepared to be inspired.” Our first featured model and designer pairing packs an inspirational and talented punch!

Wendy Bélanger is the owner of Influence Salon and an award winning platform hairstylist. Wendy and her work have been featured on radio, television and several commercial and trade magazines.  A winner of the Canadian Hairdresser Awards, Alberta hairstylist of the year styling hair for the Oscars, The Emmy’s, NYC Fashion Week and back stage at the MTV music Awards.

Wendy travels globally as Pureology’s International Artistic Director.  This position gives her the opportunity to create upcoming trends and share her experience as a successful salon owner, stylist and artist which leaves salon professionals finding her relatable and grounded. When not traveling internationally, you can find Wendy either facilitating in NYC at the Redken Exchange or training her own team at her studio in Calgary while servicing her own exclusive clientele.

Wendy’s confidence and passion have allowed her to be a trailblazer both within her field and within the Calgary community. We are so excited to have her strength and femininity embody the creation of designer Natasha Lazarovic.

Temna Flalka is Natasha’s brand that defies limitations. Natasha is a true artistic and creative force that applies her talents to painting, graphic design, sculpting and drawing – to name a few. Temna Fialka enthusiastically supports the merge of contemporary and traditional Ukrainian art and culture to captivate and engage.

Natasha’s design for the 2017 event embodies the duality of womanhood – it is both bold and soft. A perfect fit for Wendy’s courageous and compassionate spirit.

Want to connect with Wendy? Connect through Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Influence Salon’s website.

Want to connect with Natasha? Connect through LinkedIn, Twitter, Etsy and her Instagram.

From our hearts to yours,

The Heart Truth Calgary Family

Celebrity/Designer · Heart Truth Family

Heart Truth family spotlight: Ellen Dilawri and Malika Rajani

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Malika Rajani is a legacy designer for The Heart Truth Calgary Fashion Show, and she is creating two dresses for our runway in 2017. Malika’s commitment to philanthropy and community finds a perfect match with Ellen Dilawri, of the Dilawri Group.

Ellen Dilawri is a passionate supporter of a variety of philanthropic endeavors and devotes her time to her family and her community. Her favourite causes are those that support children, families and health initiatives. She takes a hands-on approach to her volunteering which is clearly demonstrated by her accomplishments. Among her many contributions, Ellen has picked up a hammer and helped to build houses through the Homes of Hope program for in-need families in Mexico. This program transforms the lives of families in poverty via the gift of a new home. Each year, she collects auction items for the annual Dad & Daughter Gala, an event hosted by Kids Cancer Care. The gala raises vital funds for cancer programs that support children battling cancer and their families.

On a regular basis, she wields a spoon and mobilizes a team of her family and friends to prepare Sunday dinner at the Drop-In Centre and has been doing this since 2013. On the more active side of philanthropy, Ellen recently completed her third Ride to Conquer Cancer, a two-day 220km bike ride in support of the Alberta Cancer Foundation. She looks forward to her 4th Ride next summer. Ellen and her husband Tony reside in Calgary with their children and four dogs. The family is very active in all sports including cycling, running and training. When not chasing after her dogs, Ellen is known to enjoy a glass or two of wine and spending time with her cherished family and friends.

Malika is a treasured participant of our event and her attention to detail, quality of work and passionate spirit reaches far beyond the runway. Born and raised in India where lush vibrant colors, rich textile and hand embroidery are way of life, Malika developed an early interest in art and design. Her life in India helped her understand craftsmanship while her move to Canada has enriched her creative side; the blend of these two worlds enabled her to develop a signature style that exudes quality with modern elegance.

In 2007 Malika moved to New York City to attend the prestigious Parsons School of Design where her work was presented at Lord & Taylor’s 2008 line debut. While at Parsons, Malika had an opportunity to intern for design houses such as Khan Lucas, Ralph Lauren, Red Cat Group and John Varvatos. Malika launched her collection in Summer of 2012 at Passione Boutique; the label’s philosophy lies in the appreciation of high style, quality of finish, and luxury of fabric.

Want to connect with Ellen? Reach out through Instagram.

Want to connect with Malika? Reach out through Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn or her website.

You can see Ellen in Malika’s design by attending and supporting the Heart Truth Fashion Show on February 11, 2017. Purchase your ticket here.

From our hearts to yours,

The Heart Truth Calgary Family

 

Celebrity/Designer · Heart Truth Family

Heart Truth family spotlight: Sarine Mustapha and Mackenzie Jones

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Sarine is Senior Vice President and Associate Portfolio Manager with BMO Nesbitt Burns. She is a Chartered Investment Manager and is licensed to manage discretionary client portfolios. She obtained her Bachelor of Commerce Degree (Finance) from the University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business.

Born and raised in Calgary, Sarine strongly believes in giving back to her community. She currently serves on the governance committee on the Board of Directors of Hull Services as well as volunteers her time on the Portfolio Advisory Committee at the United Way of Calgary and on the Fund Development Committee at the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation. She also currently serves on the Management Advisory Council at the University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business.

Having obtained her ICD.D designation in 2015, Sarine is also a member of the Institution of Corporate Directors. Outside of the office, Sarine together with her husband and three children enjoy travelling and skiing in the winter.

We couldn’t be more thrilled or grateful to have Mackenize participate in this edition of The Heart Truth Calgary Fashion Show. She creates ornate, detailed, feminine, sexy and powerful pieces – including jewellery as a focus over the last year or two. She plans to create something special for Sarine, in the realm of ‘sexy’ yet honouring modesty, something with full lace and a large voluminous bottom.

If time permits, she also would like to create a custom piece of jewellery incorporating layers of pearls and metal work! She looks forward to working with Sarine to create a design that honours both Sarine’s individuality and Mackenzie’s creativity.

Megan Mackenzie Jones is a multi-media artist working in jewellery and alternative fashion. She has lived her life all over Alberta and is now a Calgary based artist. After an extended trip travelling across Canada, Megan learned to appreciate the beauty in life. Flora and fauna, as well as memory and nostalgia are her main inspirations. Through travel, interaction and life experience she continues to learn about herself and the world around her and strives to translate these experiences into the objects she creates.

Megan graduated from the Alberta College of Art & Design with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in the Jewellery & Metals Program, and was also the winner of the Board of Governors Award in 2010.

Want to connect to Sarine? Reach out through LinkedIn.

Want to connect to Mackenzie? Reach out through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and her website.

From our hearts to yours,

The Heart Truth Calgary Team

 

Celebrity/Designer · Heart Truth Family

Heart Truth family spotlight: Kiki Buttignol and Angela Dale

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We are extremely honoured to have Angela Dale part of our designer roster this year, most specifically sharing her MakeFashion creative talent with us. The opportunity to celebrate design fashion with wearable technology, we knew would be a bold, yet powerful way to showcase the cause of our event – for heart health research and perhaps the future of fashion for good health.

Among her many creative projects, Angela has been part of Calgary Stampede Grandstand Show’s stage and costume creation and also was involved in Chinook Mall’s famous mall living statues at Christmastime! Angela Dale has been designing and building costumes and props for over 25 years. She began her career in Halifax and has since worked in theatre, film, dance and opera in Nova Scotia, British Columbia and Alberta. Angela has a background in theatre and art with a Certificate in Costume Studies from Dalhousie University, a BFA in Fine Arts from NSCAD University and an MFA in Design and Technical Theatre from the University of Calgary.

Her designs have appeared at Dublin Festival of Curiosity 2016, 2015 Maker Awards Shanghai, China, CE Week New York 2015, Augmented World Expo 2014, Make Fashion 2013-2016, Consumer Electronics Show 2014, Maker Faire YYC 2013, 2014, 2015, Maker Faire San Mateo 2013, Calgary Comic Con 2013,2015, Calgary Stampede Grandstand show 2008-2013, Red Deer College Theatre Department, Mount Royal University Theatre Department, Chinook Mall Living Statues 2009, 2010, University of Calgary Theatre Department, Richmond Gateway Theatre, Carousel Theatre, Arts Club Theatre, Vancouver Playhouse, The New Play Centre, Waterfront Theatre, Expo 86, Mulgrave Road Theatre.

Angela has also worked as a wardrobe supervisor, costume cutter, draper, and milliner on numerous theatre and film productions creating a wide variety of the weird and wonderful for the famous and not so famous. Her research interests include wearable art and technology, performative costumes, surface design, fabric manipulation and mask making. Angela lives in the foothills outside Calgary, Alberta and works as a designer and costuming instructor.

Beating beauty; The technology of the dress

Beating Beauty is a Tech Couture ensemble designed and created by Angela Dale, that utilizes the beating heart as a means of expression. Angela has something incredible planned for Kiki, knowing that she is our campaign’s heart health model, and survivor. We feel this red dress will be a perfect place to incorporate a heart rate sensor into a fashion piece to have a pulsing light display that provides a visual of  Kiki’s heartbeat. 

Kiki will be wearing a Polar heart rate sensor which will wirelessly transmit heat beats to a receiver chip in the custom made fascinator. The receiver chip will be wired up to a micro controller and a number of LED’s that will be programmed to pulse with the heart beat. The light from the LED’s will be diffused by a variety of materials in the fascinator to create a soft glowing light display.

We have previously highlighted Kiki Buttignol’s story of heart-health here. Read a snippet of her incredible journey below:

“Having a heart attack is a life changing especially as a 31-year-old woman. My biggest realization was that in order to care for others, I needed to care for myself first.” 

Both Kiki and Angela are sure to delight us on February 11. Still need to purchase your ticket? Purchase yours by visiting us here.

Want to connect to Kiki? Reach out through Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Want to connect to Angela? Reach out through TwitterLinkedIn and her website.

From our hearts to yours,

The Heart Truth Calgary Team

 

Celebrity/Designer · Heart Truth Family

Heart Truth family spotlight: Manjit Minhas and Lauren Bagliore

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This pairing sees talented designer Lauren Bagliore dress Dragon and entrepreneur Manjit Minhas in what will surely be a show stopping collaboration. Both Lauren and Manjit invest their time in many community and philanthropic efforts despite their incredible professional endeavours.

This Petroleum Engineering student turned beer baroness is the newest Dragon on the hit TV show Dragon’s Den on CBC in its 10 season. Manjit is the co-founder and co-owner of the Minhas Breweries and Distillery. She started her companies at the ripe age of 19 in Alberta, when she launched her beer in Alberta with her partner and brother, Ravinder Minhas. Together, they gave the big boys a run for their money, thereby becoming the first successful company to enter the Canadian beer industry in many decades. Over the last few years, wherever Manjit and Ravinder have entered the marketplace, and especially in Canada, they have single handedly caused a huge stir in the marketplace. In late 2008, Manjit co-wrote a book on her remarkable story, business philosophies and the history of the brewery she bought. The hardcover 108 page glossy book is titled “Brewing Up a Damn Good Story.”

Last year Manjit’s companies had revenues in excess of $155 million. Manjit has been nominated and has won several business industry awards. Manjit serves as a Board of Director for The TransCanada Trail and West Island College. Manjit is born and raised in Calgary and still calls it home with her husband and they have two young children.

Lauren Bagliore is a NYC/YYC-living fashion designer has previous participated in the Toronto event, with her debut in Calgary this 2017. Lauren is an incredibly talented and passionate woman and successful entrepreneur. With opening up her first concept shop almost two years ago located in Inglewood, Calgary, Lauren continues to create collections that inspire her clients, the industry and the local community.

Lauren’s style is edgy, minimalistic, modern and monochromatic; she surprises her followers with pieces that contain pops of colour – occasionally pink and red. We’re fortunate to have Lauren create something special in red for Manjit to showcase on our runway.

Want to connect with Manjit? Reach out through Twitter and Instagram.

Want to connect with Lauren? Reach out through Twitter, concept shop Instagram and her personal Instagram.

From our hearts to yours,

Heart Truth Calgary Family

Celebrity/Designer · Heart Truth Family

Heart Truth family spotlight: Ebony Lewis and Marsina King

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Marsina is a legacy designer of the Heart Truth Calgary Fashion Show. We cannot imagine the event without Marsina’s thoughtful and empathetic approach to community philanthropy. Pairing Marsina with Ebony was an easy choice. Both Marsina and Ebony capture the strength and passion that our event treasures so deeply.

The inspiration for Marsina’s design came from the idea of “many hearts coming together to make something beautiful.” Marsina’s design embodies a story that reflects her interpretation of what the fundraising campaign means to her. From this reflection, Marsina translated the many hearts coming together concept literally onto the dress as follows:

The top of the dress will be made from velvet and the skirt will be dupioni or raw silk. Marsina will create and piece together frayed heart appliqués to affix to the hem of the skirt and cascade upwards, in a reverse waterfall layout. All of the appliqués will be created by layering a number of red/metallic toned fabrics together (laces, chiffons, prints, solids) and strategically cutting the edges to create a layered and frayed look. Marsina will place these organically shaped hearts in groups to mimic floral arrangements.

The pattern on the skirt will be a multitude of ‘frayed heart appliqués’ individually stitched and constructed to come together. And although the hearts may be frayed individually, they join one another to make a beautiful and strong mosaic collectively.

By day, Marsina is a business professional spending her days working full time downtown Calgary. By night, she spends her time sewing, drawing and dreaming about evening wear. Marsina’s love for fashion began at a young age when she learned the fundamentals of sewing. From there, Marsina attained a Bachelors of Design in Fashion Design from Ryerson University in Toronto. After owning MaNoKin Design (her own clothing business) for a number of years,  she found her love of fashion aligned with the creativity and beauty of a well constructed garment and not so much with the commercial side of the business.

For that reason, she made the decision to continue her love affair with fashion on a selective basis, and only when the project spoke to her on a personal level. Evening wear design is how Marsina finds the romance in fashion. It is a fulfilling feeling for Marsina when a sketch evokes an emotional response, as if creating a personal connection to the piece. Marsina’s favourite parts of the design process are sketching ideas, sourcing fabrics, and sewing the intricate hand detailing that can almost always be seen on her pieces.

Ebony Lewis, born and raised in Calgary, is a proud mother of two. After attending YWAM in Kona, Hawaii, Ebony jumped into her career as a sales associate and remained in sales with ENMAX and later TransAlta. Ebony’s passion for people and loving relationships has created many long lasting friendships and support.  Juggling a full time career as single mom, Ebony has supported several causes that helped her develop a strong sense of community and leadership among those around her. 

Ebony has supported and raised funds for Janus Academy in Calgary for five years, and directly supported the Ride to Conquer Cancer for six years. It is very apparent to Ebony that caring for others (and yourself) is a priority.  A strong sense of faith and the belief that being kind is number one to herself and her children is always on Ebony’s mind. Ebony is passionate about enjoying life and the “now.” Ebony beleives on focusing on today, not tomorrow or yesterday.  

According to Ebony, “Be present, love yourself, stay strong and healthy – this will reveal  an inner joy that will inspire those around you.” This is a motto that we completely agree with!

Want to connect to Ebony? Reach out through LinkedIn.

Want to connect to Marsina? Reach out through Instagram.

From our hearts to yours,

Heart Truth Calgary Family