As someone who is just starting out in the fashion industry I often get asked why I would possibly choose to move to Vancouver. All my friends and family back east joke about Vancouver’s fashion culture (or lack thereof) and I find myself constantly fielding questions like “so does everyone just wear Lululemon all the time?” (short answer: no) or “how do you possibly dress up rain boots and a rain coat?” (to which my answer is usually an eye roll and shake of the head).
Vancouver has been the birth place of many internationally recognized major fashion labels (yes, including Lululemon) and is a breeding ground for many brilliant young designers. Vancouver Fashion Week has showcased local and international designers for over ten seasons, and Vancouver Eco Fashion Week has garnered huge Canadian coverage through Elle Magazine among many others.
So why the bad rap?
I can’t actually answer that question, but I can give you tools to fight back against your eastern and southern friends, here’s a list of companies based out of Vancouver.
the list goes on and on…
Vancouver fashion however isn’t based on what we bring (and sell) to the table label-wise, with a rich, diverse international culture, the nay-sayers would be shockedÂ to walk down South Granville or Gastown and not see everyone with a yoga bag in a pair of ripped jeans and last years styles. So instead of succumbing to the idea that Vancouver is a place where fashion goes to die, we instead need to get out there and really experience what we have to offer that makes us so special. There are hundreds of little boutiques that go unmentioned in the media despite their flawless designs and affordable pricing. Rather than heading to the mall for a new outfit, spend some time out on the streets and stroll through our little centres of high fashion. Just because we’re not a skip away from New York City doesn’t mean we’re behind in the times.
Photo from of Inside Vancouver