While the Toronto International Film Festival is all about movies and the sartorial statements celebs make on red carpets, there's another side to the fest only A-listers get to indulge in: gifting lounges. And TIFF 2012 was an epic year for swag.
"Visiting talent are often so busy working, that a lounge is a nice way for sponsors to acknowledge their successes and celebrate them," says Debra Goldblatt-Sadowski, one of the women behind Tastemakers (the first swag lounge to emerge at TIFF) and the president of rock-it promotions. "It adds to the fun of a festival and gives them a short break from their (very intense) schedules."
How do products end up being featured in specific suites? Goldblatt-Sadowski says it takes a lot of time and research to find the right sponsors to fill a lounge. "We try to choose items that may be new to the talent as well as fun, useful items."
Featuring CanCon is also important.
"As Canadians, we need to support our own, and that's really the message of the IT Lounge this year. We're featuring several Canadian companies and products," says Natasha Koifman, president of NKPR and founder of the IT Lounge. "Every year we want it to be more interesting and innovative." This year, for example, IT had a one-day photo suite with Patrick Demarchelier.
Some of the hottest lounges we received a sneak peek of were: Tastemakers, IT Lounge, Bask-It Style, Essentials Lounge (a suite full of products for media to help them cope with, and recover from, TIFF), TDotTV, B.A.D PR Premiere Lounge, the philosophy space at Nikki Beach and the Alliance Films lounge.
We sifted through each suite's featured swag and have rounded up the best products celebs left Toronto with. Check out our top 20-odd finds.