Here's a rundown of the trends from Toronto Fashion Week, which was held September 22-25, 2003:

Everything is light, colorful and pretty on the runway. Shoulder-baring separates, dresses and jersey drive the season, as do diamond back cutout and cap-sleeve tops and culotte-inspired shorts.

Colors are predominantly sweet and warm. They include white, mocha, mauve, mint, persimmon, mandarin orange, gray, sky blue, violet, moss green, aqua, sunrise, lilac, blush, rose, shell pink, red, marigold and navy.

Patterns and prints include Indonesian batik (Mabel), stars and stripes (Wolves, r.u.), polka dots (Kity, Arthur Mendonca), flowers such as lilies and sweet alyssum (Damzels in this Dress), fine nautical stripes (Damzels, Wolves, House of Spy), stickmen doodles and cartoon dinosaurs (The Waiter and the Slut).

Fabrics emphasize a lighter, breezier silhouette. They include cotton, taffeta, silk chiffon, leather, viscose jersey, sueded silk, mesh and embroidered lace.

Influences range from flamenco and Mediterranean (Arthur Mendonca), Bollywood (Mabel), nautical (Damzels in this Dress, Wolves, House of Spy) and kindergarten (The Waiter and the Slut) to the Monaco Grand Prix (Bustle), ’40s and woodlands (Damzels in this Dress) and USA Independence Day (Wolves).

Details are strong and include:

Hemlines – mostly short, but there are also a lot of asymmetrical and handkerchief/drop-point hemlines

Ruffles – tiered on dresses or vertical like fins on blouses and shorts (Arthur Mendonca, The Waiter and the Slut)

Appliques – used sparingly in the form of cutouts or sequins (Waiter and the Slut)

Perforated leather - for a chocolate men's blouson (Arthur Mendonca)

Empire waistlines – created by pink and sky-blue piping (Damzels) or with the aid of ropes or loose cotton straps tied round (Denis Gagnon)

Prize ribbons – on the chest (Damzels) or used thematically to create the bustline of a strapless top (Wolves)

Shorts – just above the calf (Arthur Mendonca, Bustle, The Waiter and the Slut, Layer)

Zippers and D-rings – zippers in gold and D-rings hooked on to tuxedo grosgrain-like trims down pants (Arthur Mendonca)

–Tim Yap, Canadian Correspondent, Sportswear International