As the sound of Drake’s “Started From the Bottom” booms throughout the quaint lounge of Toronto’s George Brown College, Thea Titus’ heart is thumping at the bottom of her stomach. There is a remarkable turn out inside the Noir Revival collective showcase – every seat filled with someone beaming – and it will be the first reveal of the young designer’s latest collection from her clothing line TiTUS.
“I won’t lie I was quite nervous before the show,” Titus shares. “Everything that I have been so focused on and spent hours working on was finally coming together.”
The 20-year-old first felt the cosmic pull toward fashion while she was still in high school and began designing styles for herself. Titus then enrolled herself in the fashion design program at George Brown College (GBC) and from there, worked tirelessly to establish herself in a city riddled with artistic talent.
Now, just a few months out of college, Titus is interning at showbiz powerhouse Entertainment Tonight Canada, where she helps pull looks for the hosts in addition to organizing the styling room. On this night, however, it’s Titus’ time to establish her brand in front of her fellow fashionistas and unveil the cream of her creative crop.
Inside GBC’s lounge an electro-hip hop song signals the start of the TiTUS set and finally Titus’ pieces are put into motion.
The street wear collection features a mash-up of loose fitted menswear and classy women’s pieces that could easily be transitioned from a casual lunch date to a night out. Trendy styles are redefined through the use of uncommon fabrics like quilted net and silk materials, which is particularly, eye catching. Each style exudes an air of originality, and appears comfortable enough to wear for several hours.
“Thea Lynn has a gift of creating head turning pieces that leave a lasting impression,” says Samantha Chizanga, organizer of the Noir Revival. “I’m excited to see her designs and talent evolve, it’ll be a truly inspiring journey.”
Some of these ‘head turning pieces’ include a floral jersey dress patterned with a mosaic of soft reds, purples and blues, as well as a flutter sleeve white crop-top with a checkered mesh across the chest, coupled with a cute pair of matching white sweatpants cuffed above the ankle. This outfit in particular, Titus says, is what she envisions her fashion idol Rihanna rocking, if she ever got the chance to style her.
The gentlemen certainly aren’t neglected with her line either, especially when it comes to the sweat suits. Most notably, the beige hooded sweatshirt weaved together with quilted net draping past the waist, paired with roomy pants to match.
“I love designing because I’m being able to turn a simple concept or idea I may have into an actual 3D garment. To me fashion designing is more than just a hobby; it’s a form of my artistic expression.” – Thea Titus
Despite the phenomenal end results, managing an independent line is no walk in the park, Thea explains.
“I would say honestly the hardest part is doing everything on my own. Like I said, I don’t have a manufacturer or anything so sometimes it gets kind of hard,” Titus reveals. “For this collection I started off trying to figure out what direction I wanted to go in. Then I shopped for fabrics in downtown Toronto in the fashion district and then from there I started drafting my patterns by hand, making rough copies and then good copies. So it’s a long process.”
Even so, not a single string or stich appears out of place as the models rock each item down the runway. In the future, Thea Titus plans to continue finding ways to expand her line and aspires to have a collection featured in Toronto Fashion Week.
“I love designing because I’m being able to turn a simple concept or idea I may have into an actual 3D garment. To me fashion designing is more than just a hobby; it’s a form of my artistic expression.”
Photos By. Isa Ransome