Inner strength, hope and courage were the theme of David Dixon’s collection presented at TW FW18. The collection, designed exclusively for Women’s College Hospital (WCH), is an interpretation of an original watercolour painting by renowned WCH surgeon, Dr. John Semple. In addition to being one of the country’s foremost surgeons specializing in breast reconstruction following mastectomy, Dr. Semple is also an acclaimed artist and an alumni of the Ontario College of Art and Design. The collection was inspired by Dixon’s own person experience of watching a loved one face cancer.
The collection drew upon the mood and colours of the painting and presented pieces that had lightness and movement. As Dixon shared in a joint interview with Dr. Semple, the collection exemplifies the “body and spirit” of the painting.
Dr. Semple noted that it would have been easy for a designer to go ahead and create a collection prior to the painting's completion and then retrofit the two together. However, David waited until the artwork was completed before starting the pieces for the collection. As Dixon shares, “once I saw the painting, I knew what to do”.
Graceful gowns and ensembles made of various silks and beaded and embroidered lace embodied the watercolour’s light colour palette and mood. Shades of yellow, turquoise, white and coral tied the collection seamlessly to the painting’s aesthetic.
The end result speaks for itself. The collection and the painting go hand-in-hand. In Dr. Semple’s words, “There is a synergy between the colours, style and mood”.
Dr. Semple’s painting has been turned into a limited edition scarf available at www.womenscollegehospitalfoundation.com with proceeds going towards programs related to transforming care for women dealing with cancer.
Photo Credit: Zahid Mahmood