Holt Renfrew
Holt Renfrew

Known For:

Its passionate commitment to sustainability and its devotion to nature & the outdoors. Although Vancouver is home to many well-known athleisure companies, they have amazing talent in other sectors of fashion design.

South Granville; photo c/o View the Vibe
South Granville; photo c/o View the Vibe

Shopping Districts:

  • Gastown: Gastown is where Vancouver shoppers go when they’re looking for high-end, independent fashion boutiques with a local bent. The neighborhood plays host to many fashion designs that are local/designed in Vancouver.
  • Yaletown: Yaletown is where many of the city’s young urban professionals (colloquially known as ‘yuppies’) live and hang out. Among the multitude of varied shops in the area lie a number of independent clothing boutiques.
  • Fairview: Fairview is a great choice for shoppers that love both fashion and art, as it’s famous for its plethora of galleries in the South Granville shopping district. Here, you’ll find some of Vancouver’s premier boutiques, some of which are listed on this profile.
  • Kitsilano: Kitsilano is somewhat of an athleisure headquarters for Vancouver, and is a literal headquarters for the apparel company Lululemon. Known for being family-friendly, Kitsilano is home to West 4th Ave – which holds a wide range of mid-range fashion boutiques, maternity clothing, and baby clothing along with the largest collection of athletic/outdoor shops in the city.
  • Downtown Vancouver: Downtown Vancouver is home to the city’s “Luxury Zone.” This area includes Alberni Street as its primary shopping area. Shoppers that don’t want to (or, more accurately, can’t afford to) indulge in luxury spending can head over to Robson street where more mainstream options exist.
  • Mount Pleasant: Mount Pleasant is where many of Vancouver’s trendy people choose to spend their time. It has Main Street, which in turn has great independent local and national fashion talent along with affordable food, craft beer, and vintage shops.
Secret Location Vancouver; photo c/o Secret Location
Secret Location Vancouver; photo c/o Secret Location

Specific Places To Shop: 

  • Holt Renfrew
  • Boboli
  • Roden Gray
  • Two of Hearts
  • Secret Location
  • Neighbour
  • Front & Company
  • Pacific Centre Mall
  • Bacci’s
  • Misch
Alex S. Yu A/W 2019; photo c/o Alex S. Yu
Alex S. Yu A/W 2019; photo c/o Alex S. Yu


  • Alex S. Yu
  • Evan Clayton
  • Aritzia
  • Ization Studio
  • LuLulemon
  • Sarah Runnalls Collection
  • Priory
  • Ryan Li
  • Catherine Regehr
  • Mahari Collection
  • Studio Lorem Ipsum
Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week designs; photo c/o Farah Nosh
Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week designs; photo c/o Farah Nosh


  • Vancouver Fashion Week: Created in 2001, Vancouver Fashion Week (VFW) has a goal of cultivating the success of both established and emerging designers with its global perspective and multicultural approach. VFW takes pride in its diversity, and it has grown to be the second-largest fashion week in North America.
  • Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week: The mission of Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week (VIFW) is to bring global recognition to Indigenous fashion designers and artisans from the Northwest coast and across Turtle Island. VIFW also supports Indigenous art and design throughout the year by developing talent and organizing showcases.
  • International Fashion Gala: The International Fashion Gala, formerly known as the Vancouver Fashion Festival, was created to facilitate a common platform in which fashion designers, brands, buyers, media, and models could take part. It aims to ‘bring a cultural revolution to the city, beginning with fashion.’
Global Fashion Collective (GFC) logo
Global Fashion Collective

Fashion Organizations:

  • Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards: The Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards (CAFA) was created to celebrate achievement and talent in the Canadian fashion industry. The goal of CAFA as a national platform is to foster the next generation of Canadian talent through an annual awards show and year-round economic development initiatives.
  • Global Fashion Collective: Global Fashion Collective (GFC) has a mission of putting on exclusive runway showcases in international fashion capitals in order to promote the work of emerging designers and bring about a more inclusive and diverse industry. GFC aims to increase its designers’ international media visibility and open up new markets for them.
FASHION Magazine, May 2018
FASHION Magazine, May 2018

Fashion Publications:

  • FASHION Magazine
  • Elle Canada
  • Micro Macro Magazine
  • Flare Magazine
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU); photo c/o KPU
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU); photo c/o KPU

Universities & Colleges:

  • LaSalle College Vancouver
  • Kwantlen Polytechnic University
  • Visual College of Art and Design
  • Blanche MacDonald Centre

To find out more about our e-book, Alternative Fashion Capitals: A Survey Of Twenty Cities Of Emerging Thought Leadership – and how to purchase it – click this link.

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Categories: Cities