British Columbia·Our Vancouver

Lesley Hampton expands definition of beauty in fashion

Toronto designer Lesley Hampton includes amputee Adrianne Haslet as a model on her runway.

Adrianne Haslet, a Boston Marathon bombing amputee, walks in designer's show

Fashion designer challenges norms

Our Vancouver

4 years ago
Lesley Hampton grew up thinking fashion models were too thin 4:26

When she was a child, Lesley Hampton thought the models on Fashion Television were too thin. Now, as a young Toronto fashion designer, she wants to change that image of the typical model.

As part of that, she's included amputee Adrianne Haslet on her runway during Vancouver Fashion Week. Haslet, a professional ballroom dancer, lost her left leg below her knee during the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013. Since then, she has be able to walk again, thanks to a prosthetic limb.

"I sent her an email. I was just like, 'I love your story. I'm so inspired. 'Would you be interested in coming to walk for my show?' And she replied right away, and was like, 'That's incredible, absolutely. And she's flying all the way in from Boston,'" Hampton told host Gloria Macarenko on CBC's Our Vancouver.

Toronto designer Lesley Hampton challenges what is considered the ideal female body shape in fashion. (CBC)

Haslet's presence as a powerful woman thriving in the face of adversity is a good fit for Hampton's 2017 fall winter collection.

"I really want the wearer of my clothes to feel like a warrior, and feel confident, and feel like they can take over the world. So I try to design to reinforce that," she said.

Lesley Hampton has managed to get a lot of positive press during Vancouver Fashion Week, including coverage in Vogue UK and Marie Claire.

To watch Lesley Hampton's interview with Gloria Macarenko on Our Vancouver, click here