Philip Sparks went fishing and landed a big one

Philip Sparks went fishing and landed a big one

A look from Philip Sparks' spring 2010 collection (Photo by Jenna Marie Wakani) 

Toronto Fashion Week doesn’t officially start until Monday, but last night one of the city’s fast-rising design talents, Philip Sparks, debuted his spring 2010 collection at the Burroughes Building on Queen Street West. The young menswear designer called upon Canadian cottaging days of yore to evoke laid-back moments on the dock. Some models (who looked like the man-children of Sparks and Robert Pattinson) carried a fishing pole or net; another was sent out in hip waders.

There were pieces that felt like more direct references to the past—high-waisted trousers, sweater sets—but Sparks’ brand of nostalgia is modern (a wool-Tencel tank and cardigan) and clever. He collaborated with the textile designer Kerry Croghan to create a witty “Gone Fishing” print—a toile-like pattern with scenes of camping, angling and canoeing. While 1950s CPR getaway ads were cited as inspiration, this wasn’t the overt Canadiana that we’re all getting sick of. Instead of beavers and maple leafs, we got a sophisticated, fresh and optimistic collection that will be hard to top next week.

See all of the looks from the collection after the jump.