By: Shannon Schaefer

On May 25, designer Stacey Gonder of Canadian fashion label House of Sass & Magic unveiled her newest gender-fluid collection at the Toronto Congress Centre during Anime North. This unconventional, dynamic and diverse fashion show made a splash at the largest anime convention in North America, and the artistry in the air certainly fuelled the energy behind this fashion presentation.

As the brainchild of Gonder, the House of Sass & Magic is an all-inclusive brand that specializes in limited-edition clothing designed to challenge the standardized norms within fashion, while empowering individuals to express their true selves.

“The inspiration for today’s collection is very close to my heart and close to the core of the brand’s ethos,” said Gonder in an exclusive interview with inFATuated. “It’s non-conformity, it’s not falling inline with what “they” tell us to do. It is not from a place of rebellion or from a place of being different for the sake of being different. It is about being authentic.”

Seeking inspiration from legends like late superstars David Bowie and Prince, and RuPaul, the House of Sass & Magic’s clothes are all handmade with comfort in mind. Whether it be a bold print or a sequined jacket, the House of Sass & Magic focuses on designing clothes that can make anybody feel empowered.

For a collection so focused on merging craftsmanship with creativity, Anime North proved to be the perfect setting for a runway show, featuring seven unique pieces. Meanwhile, Gonder herself was honoured to be part of Anime North, which officially launched in 1997 and sees an average of 30,000 attendees every year.

“I am so grateful for this opportunity. As an independent designer, it is difficult to find venues and the medium to put your work out on a stage for people to see in a cost-effective way,” Gonder said. “[Anime North] is a volunteer run event, it is giving back – an exchange of talents.”

An exchange of talents is certainly what ties the entire Canadian fashion and design industries together. With a collaborative mentality behind the brand, we certainly can’t wait to see what is next from the House of Sass & Magic.

To shop for one-of-a-kind pieces from the brand, visit .

Photo Credits: Alglid Alfrgany Abdulmagid

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