An interest in mechanics led him to dapple with his mother’s sewing machine when Mikhael Kale was just a child. At an early age, he understood that in order to embrace his creativity it was necessary for him to alter his surroundings; it was inevitable that he would leave Canada. Today, his namesake brand is an explosion of expression and intensity of emotions. The unconventional collections are comprised of unique constructive elements in contrasting fabrics, ultimately resulting in his standout provocative and punchy aesthetic.

 

 

Have you always been interested in fashion? Can you recall a moment you thought to yourself “this is what I want to do when I grow up”?

My massive family and I grew up with very little in Toronto.  We didn’t have a TV, but my mother had a sewing machine.  I began to play with it as a kid mainly out of boredom.  Initially I was fascinated with its mechanics, later I became more interested in using it.

You are originally from Toronto and studied abroad, why did you choose to pursue your academics elsewhere? 

I knew I wanted to study Fashion at Central Saint Martins .  Having said that, I also grew up in a small house with very traditional and conservative Greek parents.  I was a closet homo and knew that I needed to move in order to explore creatively.

You lived and work in Italy, Is that where you kicked off your career?

I dropped out of Central Saint Martins and moved to Italy.  I interned with design teams during the day and was a freelance seamstresses at night.  I really began understanding construction and technique through my evening internships with senior seamstresses.

 

 

Why did decide to return to Canada?

I felt stifled creatively working as a junior in Europe and I was not financially capable of developing a label in Italy.  I decided to move back to Toronto, into my parents basement and devote all my time to research and development.

How would you describe your design aesthetic and philosophy?

I create it, but I can’t describe it.  My skills in construction and development have surpassed what I can articulate, so I guess my work is yours to interpret.

 

 

Where do you seek inspiration?

Everywhere to be honest, but mainly the ‘process’.  Sometimes I start building a collection with fabric first, other times it’s pattern construction first.  Sometimes I’m inspired by an existing piece, other times it’s manipulating a technique.

What would you consider your biggest everyday challenge?

You know, this business is full of challenges.  The creative process/building of a collection is  priority, but it’s also a small part of business as a whole.  There are many moving parts and that can be overwhelming.  It can be challenging making business decisions while you are in a creative space mentally and vice versa.  In honesty, navigating through it all can be challenging.  I have complete respect for anyone in fashion…I really get the hardships and challenges involved.

Name one thing you would like people to know about you?

I am in love with what I do.

What is the essence of your FW19 collection? What woman did you have in mind when you were in the creative process?

Back in November of 2018 I got a call from a fabric supplier I work with and she told me she had a massive amount of tulle.  She bought it from a manufacturer that had gone out of business and asked if I wanted any.  I hadn’t really experimented with tulle in past, so I went and picked some up.  My team and I started playing with the tulle and it worked…eventually.  I had no intention to make tulle pieces initially, it just stuck.  We created these amazing sculptural tulle pieces, boned and cut as if they were canvas.  We imposed structure on these transparent light tulle corsets and dresses.

 

 

What do you aim at expressing through your designs?

I’m not sure, that’s a great question.  I guess if it were anything I’d say truth.

Can you name the one of your most memorable moments in your career so far?

BEYONCÉ.

Do you have a motto you live by?

‘Get rich or die trying.’  -50 Cent

 

 

Photographer: Carlo Calope

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