Saturday, June 7, 2008

Ports of Call


I’m preparing for a conference in Canada, and so my mind has been drifting back to my northern home daily, remembering things I didn’t know I’d forgotten.

Lately I’ve been thinking about a fashion house that has special meaning for me. My stylish grandmother, who, as I’ve noted here before, would plan two shopping events a year in Montreal, (a significant journey from her Prince Edward Island home). She’d go to Ogilvy, and select her seasonal wardrobe.

More often than not, a significant part of that wardrobe was comprised of Ports International (now renamed Ports 1961). She’d buy some shirtdresses—always well tailored, in pretty colors, some handsome silk or cotton blouses, some smart jersey knits, and pencil cut tweed, wool, or cotton skirts. She’d never select a print, preferring to accent with scarves.

My generation missed out on the Ports experience, because by the time I could afford it (late teenager/early twenty-something) it coded too old for me.

But now vintage Ports is undeniably cool (check out K.Line, for instance) and I’m dying to get my hands on some new Ports 1961, which has had, in the previous seasons, some gorgeously ethereal dresses and mod coats that wouldn’t be out of place in London in the sixties. Fun fact: the Canadian Dsquared brothers used to design for Ports (so I’m told). Its current designer is Tia Cibani, who was born in North Africa and raised in Vancouver.

I hope to check out this line during the summer. It's not my gram's Ports any more.

6 comments:

Times of Glory said...

Thank you for your lovely comment! I've added you in my blogroll! Dear, Ports 1961 is a great label choice - always well made and designed! I think Tia Cibani has given some new injection to the house since taking over in 2003 (If I remember correctly)!

DSquared2 was very creative in 90s. Tia worked for DSquared2 brothers before joining the label. Her style is more down to wearable, feminine and easy-going silhouettes! I bet you will look very stylish in them xx

K.Line said...

So love this line. I remember when you could get it at Holt Renfrew - before it was "granny". Now it's very youthful again... I was really excited to find that dress. If you come to TO, you have to let me know!

WendyB said...

I love the new line. There's a cute dress on sale at Saks.
http://www.saksfifthavenue.com/main/ProductDetail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524446163632&FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=282574492702915&ASSORTMENT%3C%3East_id=1408474399545537&bmUID=1212869573857&ev19=1:3

miss cavendish said...

Hi Times of Glory--Thank you for your warm comments and for the addition to your blogroll. And I appreciate the background on Tia Cibani . . . she's certainly transforming Ports in a welcome manner.

K.Line--Alas, I won't be going anywhere near Ontario; it would be great fun to have a shopping/luncheon date with you!

Wendy--I checked out the dress; very cute indeed (and at a great price). I think that the one-shoulder ruffly dress (also at Saks) would look great on you . . .

enc said...

I've been admiring Ports for a couple of years now. That blue dress is a great example of why. I just love the shape, color, and neckline.

Latisha said...

Nice dresses!! I bought beaded one shoulder silk dress from Saks Fifth Avenue... I juts love it!!