Local Love: Freedom and rebellion via a two-piece set designed in Toronto


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Birds of North America manages to be both prim and proper yet peculiar all at once. The child of designer Hayley Gibson, who comes complete with a crop of blue locks, the label has slowly but surely secured a place for itself since stepping onto the fashion scene back in 2007. With vintage-inspired cuts paired with fun loving prints, these clothes speak to the lady who like to deliver personal style with a peppering of quirk.

In its early days, Gibson did everything for Birds herself, designing, cutting and sewing each garment. Now she runs a not-so-small business, employing a handful of studio staff along with dozens of contractors who whip up the clothing. The pattern grading and design is done right here in Toronto, while the clothing is cut and sewn in Montreal. While there are, yes, many prints for those who love to be a bit shoutier with their style, Birds’ classic cuts also appeal to gals who aren’t quite so fearless. 

From the current spring/summer collection, we adore the two-piece red bandana set ($129 top; $149 skirt). “A two-piece set like this is such a complete look that you don’t need much else going on!” Gibson says. Constructed out of 100% cotton (your skin can breathe!), the set pairs a cropped top with a high-waisted skirt, showing just enough skin to tease. Details like princess seams, a back button closure and pockets make all the difference for the wearer. “You don't even need a purse!” says Gibson of the pockets. 

“I love the ’90s feeling this classic bandana print has,” Gibson says. “It speaks to me of summer, freedom and rebellion.” We couldn’t agree more. Throw a black leather jacket over your shoulder and get ready to paint the town, well, red.

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Karolyne Ellacott is senior editor at Post City Magazines. She can oft be spotted at Toronto’s most nostalgic diners wearing glittery heels and pink faux fur. Follow all of her eclectic writing interests on Twitter @kellacott and Instagram @itismekar.

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