Kruger and Bell celebrate 20 years of Cashmere Couture with new documentary

Attendees of “Lovestruck,” the 20th anniversary Cashmere fashion show hosted by Kruger Products, were informed as they entered the pink carpet at Evergreen Brickworks Tuesday night, that they were also providing consent to be photographed and filmed for use in a documentary.

To memorialize the two-decade milestone of the couture event that challenges Canadian designers to create fashions from Cashmere bathroom tissue to raise money for breast cancer prevention and treatmentKruger has partnered with Bell Media to produce a documentary on celebrity fashion. The special, called Cashmere Presents Lovestruck is set to air on on Oct. 12, and Crave on Oct. 16.

A short trailer was played before the show, revealing that Canadian fashion icon Jeanne Beker and TV personality and reporter Elaine Lui, both of whom were in attendance, hold starring roles.

Kruger’s relationship with Bell Media dates back to 2020, when it used its hit TV show The Social to stage a socially distanced runway event on the program’s Facebook page. Impressed by the digital reach, Kruger partnered with Bell the following year, airing a behind-the-scenes special of the 18th Cashmere collection on CTV and Crave.

“They’ve been great partners of ours, and have really invested behind our business,” said Kruger Products CMO Susan Irving.

“[This year’s documentary] is about how fashion plays such a big role in love, and how you remember what you wear in those moments,” she added. “The idea of connecting love to this cause felt right, because cancer is something that we inevitably all share with someone we love.”

The theme contextualizes the designs of the 20th cashmere collection, as well as Kruger’s recent “Love is Messy” campaign.

With this year marking two decades of the annual fundraising event, Irving says they were determined to make it bigger and better than ever. This year’s collection featured the largest and most diverse designer roster to date, including Indigenous, Nigerian, Filipino and Indonesian designers making runway-worthy fashion items inspired by the toilet paper brand.

The show was hosted by Canadian TV personality and comedian Jessi Cruickshank, who told attendees that there was also a secret 21st look. It turned out to be a comically small dress worn by viral pet Tika the Iggy, who pranced down the runway to Madonna’s “Vogue.”

Kruger will be donating $1 on the sale of every specially marked package of limited edition cashmere and Purex bathroom tissue purchased in October, directly to the breast cancer cause, up to $100,000.

Kruger also launched a month-long digital activation, where all 20 designs from the show are showcased on an AR wall that allows viewers to see the designs on the runway and learn about each of the designers.

Viewers are prompted to choose their favourite design and dedicate it to a loved one, with Kruger donating $1 for every dedication, up to $50,000, in the winning designer’s name to its long-standing charitable partners, Canadian Cancer Society and Quebec Breast Cancer Foundation.

The show also featured a special archival exhibit of garments from each year of the Cashmere show, dating back to the first collection in 2004. “It’s not often that a program of any kind runs this long,” said Irving. “But the fact that this program has yielded such meaningful results along the way is truly inspiring.”

Emma Johnston-Wheeler