25 essential Vancouver clothing brands you should know

Hello fashion lovers! We think now is about a good time to revisit our list of essential Vancouver clothing brands (and more) you should know about. From international to emerging, this city has proven to be a hotbed of new styles, big names and just about everything in between. Naturally, we’ll do our best to cover all the bases!

Here are 25 Vancouver brands, from clothing to accessories, that you should know.

Unisex brands

Arc’teryx

Wow, Arc’teryx has exploded since we last wrote this list. Of course, their clothes are still designed for the Pacific Northwest lifestyle. Now, they have the choice between collaborations with major brands, in addition to their main ranges and their specialized offers. Get a hoodie, get a fully waterproof fit…and increase both comfort and style.

Instagram: @arcteryx

lululemon

Like it or not, lululemon was one of the brands that managed to put Vancouver fashion on the map. And, they’ve absolutely stood the test of time, evolving every year to stay ahead of the trends. You can’t deny, the products are great for a workout.

Instagram: @lululemon

Kit + Ace

Lululemon’s younger, more cultured sibling. And, after being sold in 2018, the company has found a niche that works. Tech touches make your average work outfit that much more stylish and, yes, even more functional.

Instagram: @kitandace

reigning champion

Let’s say the technical look isn’t really to your liking. Luckily for you, Reigning Champ has been making fantastic leisure wear for years now. If you’re craving classic sweatshirts, sweatpants, and accessories, this name is hard to beat. Case in point? Another big name (Aritzia) acquired them to get into menswear.

Instagram: @reigningchamp

Van City Original

The bold, graphic pieces made by this company are perfect for those who love the city or who buy gifts for people who love the city. And, we admit, that’s a much better approach than just grabbing a Canucks hat or something.

Instagram: @vancityoriginal

Shoes

John Fluevog

John Fluevog is to shoes in Vancouver what lululemon is to yoga gear. Whether you like it or not, it’s the name people associate with the city. On the plus side, the unique and esoteric models have more toned down versions to balance them out.

Instagram: @fluevog

Vessi Shoes

A relatively new name with a pretty huge claim – waterproof knit shoes. Well, they’ve convinced us they’re the real deal, and we’ll take just about everything we can from the dozens of Blundstones and Doc Martens we see daily.

Instagram: @vessi

Dayton Boots

Speaking of alternatives, this Vancouver company has been making work boots by hand in the same East Vancouver factory for over 6 decades. Quality comes at a price, but if you’re willing to pay it, you’ll have a pair of boots that will last a lifetime.

Instagram: @daytonboots

small plot

Based between San Francisco and Vancouver, Small Lot is an emerging name in vegan and sustainable footwear. Simple, elegant and above all functional, their shoes are perfect for a day of shopping or sitting by the beach.

Instagram: @smalllotco

Focused on men’s fashion

James loose

This menswear line has done a great job of staying small, but more importantly, sticking around. With a focus on shapes and materials, designers create timeless looks, never stagnant or uninspired.

Instagram: @jamescoward

gear parts

This is the latest venture from the people behind the beloved Explorer’s Press line. This time around, they’re focusing on car culture, which results in some pretty hilarious tees and accessories. Good bumper stickers too.

Instagram: @speedparts.shop

Studio A-OK

It’s hard to sum up Studio A-OK. The fun designs draw from a variety of inspirations, but generally focus on vintage psychedelia and pop culture. And while we post that in the men’s clothing section, t-shirts are absolutely unisex options.

Instagram: @_studioaok

ADAPT

If you want to support a new brand early on, this is the name to go. Some savvy readers will appreciate that the guy behind was a clothing designer for HAVEN clothing and their collaborations for years. It starts with simple t-shirts, but we’re excited to see where things go.

Instagram: @adaptation.co

INDOCHINO

When direct to consumer works, hoo boy, it works a lot. Specializing in bespoke formal wear, INDOCHINO has become one of Vancouver’s most recognizable names in clothing brands, and for good reason – incredible value on high-quality pieces, from single shirts to 3-piece suits.

Instagram: @indochino

Focused on women’s fashion

Aritzia

Aritzia can’t be wrong, from her clothes to her various social initiatives and her absolutely stunning social media presence. Fun fact – Aritzia is also one of the oldest brands on this list, having started in 1984. We have a feeling they won’t be stopping any time soon.

Instagram: @aritzia

A bronze age

With local-on-local construction and feminine silhouettes, A Bronze Age is a great laid-back brand to know any time of the year, but especially in the summer. Quality comes at a cost, but rest easy knowing the pieces will be an integral part of your wardrobe for years to come.

Instagram: @abronzeage

Fortiv

This brand is still quite small but makes some truly amazing pieces using 100% reclaimed materials. We’re talking about items like vests, jackets, dresses and more. We love the focus on durability and can’t wait to see where this brand goes!

Instagram: @_Fortiv_

hijule

Julie Roussy Newton creates stunning handmade pieces with natural dyes and hand-embroidered accents. It manufactures items ranging from underwear to unique tops, jackets, dresses, and more. Definitely worth checking out if you’re a fan of sustainable brands.

Instagram: @hijulez

Smash + Tess

Another groundbreaking hit out of Vancouver, Smash + Tess has dominated the romper market for the past few years, including collaborations with names like MEC, Brunette the Label and even Barbie.

Instagram: @smashtess

Bags/Accessories/Other

Herschel Supply

Although the owners are from Saskatchewan (Herschel refers to a small town there), they founded the company in Vancouver. And of course, it’s the last of Vancouver’s clothing brands to achieve worldwide fame. Their products are affordable and functional, so we agree.

Instagram: @herschelsupply

Erin Templeton

For years, Erin Templeton has been making fantastic, affordable bags. The main line is great, but we suggest you check out the upcycled and upcycled product line, using old leather or other fabrics to make it. Either way, it’s a must-have brand to know in the city.

Instagram: @erin_templeton

AW by Andrea Wong

This brand specializes in bags and accessories, from cosmetic bags to backpacks. Everything is handmade with care and meant to last, but still features stunning touches, finishes and lines. We are very fond of grocery bags for sale.

Instagram: @awbyandreawong

TAIKAN

This brand started with backpacks, but went on to make some of the best shoulder bags we’ve ever seen, and at great prices. If you’re looking for a great take-everywhere bag, we seriously can’t recommend these enough.

Instagram: @taikaneeverything

circus of wolves

Specializing in semi-fine and unisex jewellery, Wolf Circus is the perfect choice to add that little extra touch to any outfit. And, it doesn’t hurt that in addition to the great designs, they use reclaimed materials, freshwater pearls, and lab-created gemstones to reduce their ecological and environmental footprint.

Instagram: @wolf_circus

LONDON

To top off this list, we have one of the most ambitious brands in Canada, if not North America. London specializes in women’s swimwear and bodywear, but with a serious twist – all of their pieces are made primarily from recycled water bottles (minus the zippers and such), and they’re heavily involved in initiatives to help save the ocean and riparian areas.

Instagram: @londonbodywear

There you have it, our most recent update to the list of Vancouver clothing brands you absolutely need to know. Buy with confidence and support local people!

Michael O. Stutler