Joann Schelstraete

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Joann Schelstraete


Joann Schelstraete has had an extensive career in the Canadian fashion industry. After completing her degree in apparel design from Ryerson University, she sold her collection of knitwear under her Zool label in the late 90s, while also designing for custom clientele. She then went on to design and develop product for many of Canada’s largest retailers including Danier Leather, Roots, Fairweather, Sears, and Eaton’s. During her 16 year tenure at Danier Leather, Joann travelled extensively throughout the US, Europe and Asia, attending trade shows, sourcing fabric and gathering inspiration. She created and presented the trend direction for the company each season and was instrumental in developing standards and processes for the design and technical teams. Joann is currently the Managing Director & Head of Product at Mini Mioche, a prominent Toronto based children’s wear retailer that locally knits, dyes and produces infant and kid’s apparel specializing in organic fabrics. She presently manages the ecommerce, retail, warehouse, production, product development and merchandising teams. In 2017, Joann began teaching at GBC while continuing to work full-time in the industry.

Academic Credentials

Bachelor of Applied Arts, Apparel Design Major, Ryerson University, School of Fashion, 1994

Professional Achievement Award in Retail Buying, Ryerson University, 2013

Areas of Specialization

World of Fashion (fashion industry overview)
Product Development & Costing
Design & Product Development
Trend Direction
Import and domestic production
Ecommerce and Retail
Merchandising – Buying & Planning
Business Strategy

Career Highlights

Sept 2017 to present: Mini Mioche – Managing Director & Head of Product

Jan 2017-Sept 2017: Sears – Product Manager

March 2016-present: Freelance Design & Consulting

May 2000-March 2016: Danier Leather – Senior Designer

Aug 1999-May 2000: Roots – Technical Designer

June 1998-Aug 1999: Eaton’s – Styling & Fit Analyst

May 1996-June 1998: Fairweather – Design Co-ordinator/Design Technician

June 1995-May 1996: North Studio Inc – Design/Production Manager

Sept 1994-June 1995: Angi Venni – Design/Production Assistant

April 1994-Sept 1994: Celebrity Collection – Design/Production Assistant

Other Activities

Ryerson University, Advisor and Judge for 3rd year leather design competition, 2010-2018

Seneca College, Judge at final fashion show, 2017

Seneca College, Advised graduating students’ on their final collections, 2016

Only employee to be awarded Employee of the Quarter three times at Danier: 2005, 2007, 2010

Designed and developed specialty Blackberry phone cases for Research in Motion, 2007

Designer of the Official ‘Juno Bag’, 2007 and 2008

Finalist in the Smirnoff International Fashion Awards, 1994

Finalist in the Hazelton Lanes New Designer Show, 1994