I was recently shopping in H & M when I decided to take a look at the label on a t-shirt I was trying on. I thought to myself, where is this shirt coming from? Of course I knew what to expect, but it still upset me when I read “Made in Bangladesh”. After the factory collapse that took place there back in April, I began to think about all the hard labour that must have been put into the making of this tiny piece of fabric.
With the recent buzz over Toronto Fashion Week, I thought that it would be relevant to list some of the Canadian designers/companies that actually make their collections here, instead of outsourcing their designs to manufacturers overseas. After all, according to Statistics Canada the number of Canadians making clothes declined from 94,260 in 2001 to 19,340 in 2010. Translation- it’s a rare commodity. I was surprised to find out that unfortunately, many of them do business elsewhere- out of the country. That got me thinking, which stores actually carry Canadian made clothing here?
- Simon’s Clothing – (specifically “TWIK”). They manufacture their clothing in Quebec. Originally designed by Peter Simon, his retail chain is constantly growing despite the competition in retail. http://www.simons.ca/simons/
- Jacob – (Made in Canada Collection) is composed of cute prints, shirts, dresses and more. They advertise that they are 100% made in Canada, which is pleasing to the ears. http://www.jacob.ca/shop-by/made-in-canada
- Le Chateau– They offer “high-quality, in-house designed accessible luxury clothing, shoes and accessories to a broadening unisex customer base and are 100% made in Canada.
- MYTH BUSTER – Canadian company “Roots” claims they too manufacture their products here in Canada, yet 60% of their products are manufactured in other countries such as India. Yes, they still produce products in their Toronto leather factory but unfortunately they do not fit the “100% Canadian” bill.
So where does one go to shop solely Canadian? Try Homegrown Boutique in Toronto. They have tons of fabulous fashions, exclusively retailing clothing and accessories from Canadian designers.