Canadian Fashion Connection – Hugh Garber

Hugh Garber with model, 1981

Born in 1945, Hugh Garber left his native Montreal to study art at Hornsey College of Art in London. Upon graduation he worked as a cook in a kibbutz for 6 months before working at Patrick Barentzen in Rome. Waiting for an opportunity in fashion back in Canada, that opportunity came in 1968 when he was hired by Margo Dress in Montreal to design their holiday line. The line was a success and soon Hugh Garber was designing under his name for Margo Dress.

In 1976 Garber moved to Toronto, becoming a partner in a new company HE II. His clothes were never edgy or extreme, they were always immensely wearable, and sold through quality retailers, like The Room at Simpsons. In 1981 Garber took on some more corporate work, designing uniforms for CP Air, Mary Kay cosmetics, and Players Tennis classic. By 1983, his love with the fashion business had waned and he went into a new venture – Hughie’s Burgers. The restaurant was a success, but an even more fortuitous event occurred when Garber won a 3.2 million dollar lottery in 1987.

About Jonathan

Jonathan Walford is a fashion historian and co-founder of the Fashion History Museum in Cambridge, Ontario. The FHM maintains a collection of nearly 12,000 artifacts dating from the mid 17th century to the present. Jonathan has authored various books and museum catalogues, including The Seductive Shoe, Shoes A-Z, Forties Fashion, 1950s American Fashion, and Sixties Fashion.

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