One of my favourite fall activities in this city is the annual Vancouver International Film Festival. Although not as glamourous as Venice or Toronto, our festival schedules 200-300 films from around the globe in an intense three-week period, and every year includes several eventual Oscar nominees and winners, not to mention favourites from Cannes.
Canadian luminaries often premiere or showcase their films here, such as Atom Egoyan, Patricia Rozema and Xavier Dolan, whose one-and-only screening of his 2014 Cannes winner Mommy ran an hour late and nearly caused a stampede at the box office when angry pass holders were denied entry into the overbooked showing at the Playhouse. In 2009, the then up-and-coming Lee Daniel appeared in person to promote his Sundance breakout Precious, which drew a long and rapturous ovation from a sold-out crowd and resulted in a long greeting line of nearly a hundred weeping patrons personally congratulating him on producing a landmark work of art. (He eventually got an Oscar nomination for that film).
In tribute to VIFF, we’ve decided to go with a luxurious-looking knot that is straight from the Matrix film series: the Merovingian knot (aka Ediety) in a Joseph & Feiss tie.
This knot starts off like a Pratt or Shelby knot, but in reverse. The idea is to work with the large knot and leave yourself a lot of room with the fabric, as this will eat up a lot of it. Once you’ve started off with the Pratt, you will eventually wrap it around the knot and loop it back over. Eventually you will end up with the little end laid overtop the wider or large end, giving the appearance that your tie is wearing its own tie!
There are a couple of things to note here. First, the way the tie finishes off is a bit unsightly, with the little end laid over it appears it does not work well when you move. To get around this, wear a vest, jacket or waistcoat so that the overall appearance is held together in place. The tie is secure, but having the small end “flap about” like a fish out of water is not the most elegant, so a vest or jacket prevents that. Second, this looks works best with either a monochrome or non-uniform pattern, so that the smaller end becomes its own showpiece and you can best appreciate the intricate work. Wearing it with a pattern the way I do warrants a second look, but only if you want everyone to come up close to see the knotwork. This is not a tie meant to be work for business, but it will certainly make you a hit at parties.
Tickets are now available for VIFF. A few years ago I covered VIFF for my old hobby blog, and if you need a survival guide on what to expect and how to prepare check it out. Some of the tips are a little specific to its time, due to the closing of the Granville Cinemas, but the principles will save you time, money and general hassle, especially if you’re new to VIFF or need a refresher on protocol. Having been a volunteer, patron and guest of VIFF at galas, premieres, press conferences and the publicist’s office, I speak from experience and a couple of drenched evenings standing in line in the rain.
Hope to see everyone at the festival!
Tie carefully, yours in knotwerk,
(All photographs by Helen Siwak of THEClosetYVR)