This past week, Gillian was asked to be featured in the inaugural ‘style column’ of the local paper, The Creemore Echo! Here’s the text from her mini interview by Kristi Green (it’s not printed online so thought we’d include it here). Rock on, G. xx Shanan
“Winter can be harsh on many things – including personal style. In this column – the first in what we hope is an ongoing series – the Echo will showcase individuals in the area who “take it to the next level” when it comes to their dress. It could be a doldrum-defying colour combination, a surprising new way of wearing knitwear or the simple act of sporting a colourful feather in one’s cap.”
Occupation: Social Worker, Part-time Mental Health Counsellor at the Georgian Bay Family Health Team in Collingwood.
Co-owner, designer and curator (along with artist and graphic designer, Shanan Kurtz) of The Symmetric. We write a three-times weekly blog, sell vintage clothing and jewelry, host events and offer styling services. Our vintage clothing and antique and costume jewelry is for sale by appointment and online at our Etsy shop. We will launch our capsule collection of vintage resort-wear in February, and we are excited to host another trunk show on Saturday, February 22.
I’m also mother to Yarrow, age 7, and Frida, age 3, and I am married to Steve Sopinka, founder of Fieldesign architecture studio.
Describe your style: Eclectic, ironic, retro-chic.
Why Creemore? We have a strong sense of adventure and have moved around a lot as a couple and as a family. From Montreal to Toronto to Reykjavik to Northern Ontario. After a stint in North Bay, we knew we wanted to be somewhere somewhat rural, with a strong sense of community. Proximity to friends and family is important to us (we have both in Collingwood, Beaver Valley, Guelph and Toronto), and possibilities to pursue meaningful work. Creemore offered all of these things.
We bought our rambling old house on Caroline Street in June of 2010 and Steve spent the summer renovating it (and getting rid of the bats!). We settled into the village that fall.
Favourite thing about winter? The SNOW! We try to stay active – cross country skiing, walking the country block, doing what we can to get out of the house and soak up some vitamin D!
I think winter gets a bad rap. It’s actually the perfect time to experiment with different, more daring materials – furs (faux is also a nice alternative), wools, leather, some of the weightier silks and velvet. This season is also ripe to try rich, bold prints and vivid colours that may feel too cumbersome and intense in the warmer, lighter months – and they are the perfect contrast to the stark environs this time of year. I say embrace it. Go big, or go home!
What are you wearing? Everything I have on, I’ve collected from either thrift or second hand stores. I’ve dubbed these my Mick Jagger pants. They’re a great bold print skinny jean that I picked up at one of my favourite thrift stores, Wild Rose, in Guelph. The fur hat is made in Moscow, also vintage, and a gift from Steve our first Christmas with Yarrow, spent in Iceland (very apropos because it’s the warmest thing ever!). The teal wool coat is a London Fog original, 1980s, that I dug up recently at a Goodwill shop. And my “Chewbacca” wooly mammoth mukluks are circa 1970s, made in Quebec.