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1ER MAI Fashion Show
M.A.D. FESTIVAL, August 2023


For the third consecutive year, 1ER MAI presented its fashion show at the M.A.D Festival, a unique outdoor event celebrating fashion, music, and the arts in the heart of downtown Montreal at Place des Festivals.

The show opened with vibrant visuals by Maude Maestracci, as the runway echoed with the rhythmic beats of Japanese taiko drums. The initial looks featured a creative use of denim, emphasizing the brand's commitment to sustainability through upcycling. These denim pieces were meticulously adorned with weaving, braiding, and patchworks showcasing an array of blue hues.


The runway then transitioned to a collection characterized by minimalist streetwear silhouettes. Unisex bomber jackets, oversized shorts, rompers, and mini skirts took center stage, all crafted from premium Italian cotton sateen, unique deadstock corduroy and woven jacquards. This understated collection embodied a harmonious blend of modern style and timeless design.


The highlight of the evening, however, was the revelation of 1ER MAI's latest creations, born from the discovery of a trove of vintage military fabric. A striking olive green tropical wool, originally produced in 1989 for the Canadian Armed Forces, breathed new life into the collection. The ingenious incorporation of this authentic military textile gave rise to monochromatic ensembles, seamlessly melding military and workwear inspirations. The runway showcased an array of denim-inspired jackets, utilitarian vests, workwear-inspired coveralls, alongside kimonos, long oversized shorts, cargo pants, and the brand's signature waist cut-out overalls, revisited in a new silhouette.

What set these utilitarian pieces apart was the exceptional quality of the fabrics, both inside and out. Each garment was lined in a soft Italian cotton, ensuring both comfort and style. The silhouettes, straight and oversized, remained faithful to the collection's overall minimalistic theme. The jackets and vests were adorned with double topstitches, accentuating their utilitarian aesthetic.

The finale was a memorable moment, as all 23 models regrouped in a synchronized formation and marched to the organic rhythms of powerful drums and resonant voices, echoing Alexandre Desplat’s "Shinto Shrine" from Wes Anderson’s "Isle of Dogs". The runway came alive with an unfolding walk pattern, and as the models exited the stage, they left behind a lasting impression on the audience.

In summary, 1ER MAI's showcase at the M.A.D. Festival was a testament to their creativity, commitment to sustainability, and respect for history. The fusion of vintage military fabric with contemporary design aesthetics offered the audience a unique experience that highlighted the creativity of this emerging designer.