By: Marilyn Wilson

Shine 2016 – an extravaganza of fashion, music and dance– will be hitting the stage at the Commodore Ballroom on September 10th. This wonderful evening is made possible by hundreds of individuals who are rallying together for mental health. Communities helping communities!

Every single person and every single business involved is volunteering their time and services. Because of their generosity, Shine! will be able to donate 100% of every dollar raised through ticket sales and donations directly to the evenings recipients – Canadian Mental Health Association and The Lions Gate Hospital HOpe Centre.

As a thank-you, we will be highlighting some of the wonderful people and businesses who are working hard to make this evening the best it can be. Today’s interview is with Melanie Talkington of Lace Embrace Atelier, one of 12 designers participating in SHINE!

Please share about your journey to becoming a designer – how did you choose this career, training or self-taught, when did you launch your brand?

I always knew whatever career path I chose for myself had to be something I loved. I realized that people were always asking me to sew complicated things for them and decided to study fashion. I started the fashion program in Calgary, which ended up cancelled, and moved Vancouver to continue studying at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. I graduated in 1995 and started Lace Embrace Atelier 1997.

Describe your brand/collection? Who is your customer? What would you most like readers to know?

We are specialized corset makers and costumers. Our clients range from 16-year-old girls needing medical braces to blushing brides, mothers-of-the-bride and great-grandmothers still requiring medical braces. We also have lots of fun creating corsets and lingerie for film and television. I also dabble in the museum world. loaning my antique Corset collection to exhibitions. Currently a part of my collection is on exhibit at the Museum of Vancouver. The collection also travelled to Paris for a fashion exhibition.

What do you love most about working in the world of design? What is hardest?

I love the flexibility and freedom to be inspired by my own whims and fantasies to create and explore different concepts. I love watching how a collection takes its own form and seeing the pieces fall into place. It’s often difficult to find time to remain in a playful creative space because business and customer needs always come first, yet I still manage to have fun creating and working with my clients whims.

Can your share an interesting story from your time working in this field?

I really enjoy going to the film studios to fit the actresses. It’s great seeing another creative space and working with costume designers to make their visions become a reality. I enjoy collaborating and being part of the grand vision. It’s even more thrilling to see my work on the screen.

Please share how you heard about Shine 2016 and why you feel it’s important to participate in this fundraiser for Canadian Mental Health Association and The Lions Gate Hospital HOpe Centre.

Dani of The House Barnes contacted me about the show. I had heard about the show last year and thought it was a brilliant way to bring so many artists together to collaborate for an important cause. It’s great to see Vancouver producing large scale shows as well as raise a great deal of money for mental health.

What part of the Shine 2016 show will you be involved with? Can you give us a titillating hint as to what we expect so see from you on the runway?

We are designing a new and overdue collection inspired by light, ethereal, utopian magic that is still taking on its own destiny.

For more information on Melanie Talkington and Lace Embrace, please visit her website at or facebook page at

Shine 2016 is going to be a do-not-miss amazing showcase of fashion, music and dance, all in support of The Canadian Mental Health Association and The Lions Gate Hospital HOpe Centre.

Don’t Miss Out! Pick up your tickets today at