10 Cool Gifts That Come From Vancouver
If you want to find an original and meaningful gift, look no further.
The BFF can’t have Ryan Reynolds for Christmas, but there’s all kinds of born-in-Vancouver things she can. Some are obvious (an A+ umbrella) and some a little less so (a singular earring named for and first worn by Diane Kruger). One needn’t live here to want these gifts though, they’re good for almost anyone, anywhere.
The “Radical Women” print created by Sarah Edmonds and Tammy Lawrence’s Banquet Atelier & Workshop is silhouette portraits of seriously inspiring women. Available emblazoned on paper, linen napkins, tops and pillows, it features 36 icons, including Gloria Steinem, Yoko Ono, Michelle Obama and Malala Yousafzai. To boot, a portion of sales is donated to Madre.org. From $87 at Etsy.ca.
Fine jewellery line Roque takes its name from Picasso’s most-painted spousal muse, but most of the rings, necklaces and earrings are named for different women. A collab between designer-maker Negar Khatami and stylist Michelle Addison, the collection’s 30+ pieces are inspired by Addison’s family and friends, including actress Diane Kruger and CTV news anchor Tamara Taggart. The modern, high-end pieces are meant to be lived-in—Addison even took the infinity band surfing in Fiji. From $55, at roque.shop or in-store at One of a Few.
Northern Lights Optic’s 2018 collection launched a hot minute ago (it’s not even online yet), so those who find a pair under the tree will be some of the first to sport them. The Prism style is designer Orion Anthony’s take on a squared half-rim spec worn by Jacques Cousteau. While the NL-26 is a fresh, high-fashion interpretation of the classic aviator, pink lenses and all. From $199 at Durant Sessions.
The city loves it’s leisure-slash-activewear, but you know what’s more comfortable than yoga pants? Sweats. Luckily, the city’s own Reigning Champ, which does the slickest cuts in the nicest terry, just released a womens core collection of hoodies, pullovers, pants and more. Expect whomever you gift it to to live in it from Boxing Day through New Year’s. From $55, at reigningchamp.com.
Count on Raincouver to churn out a wicked umbrella brand, and that’s Westerly. In full sized or packable styles, they come in cool prints (“Aqua” looks like sun reflecting on blue pool water) with beautiful wooden handles and fibreglass reinforced ribs for wind resistance. They’re so nice, they might make people like wet weather more. Maybe. From $45 at westerlygoods.com.
Miriam Alden’s Brunette the Label has blossomed from slogan shirts to a full collection. With it’s removable pink shearling label collar, the Florence vegan leather moto jacket is a spot-on gift for any tough-and-tender lady—you can have it plain or with “blonde” or “brunette” back patch. Did we mention it’s vegan? From $265 at brunettethelabel.com.
A family-owned business dating back to 1971, Tense Watches makes every one of its timepieces by hand in Vancouver using 100 per cent recycled or reclaimed wood. Styles range from the full-on wood “Pacific,” or the subtler “Hudson” with only a wooden bezel. From $145 at tensewatches.ca.
The West Coast is wild about natural beauty and skincare. ILIA, RMS Beauty, Belmondo and K’pure Natural Body Care were all started by Vancouverites (pro tip: Gastown boutique Lynn Steven has them all under one roof). Two local brands recently partnered up, with Fable Naturals coming on board with Woodlot to help create the latter’s body lotions. A blend of lavender, bergamot, cedar and sweet orange essential oils, “Flora” is an olfactory feast. From $28 at shopwoodlot.com.
For hard-to-buy-for folks, candles are a safe bet (who doesn’t love candles?). Getting them a neighbourhood-specific one by Vancouver Candle Co. is a tinge more thoughtful though. There’s seven ‘hoods representing, including Strathcona and the North Shore. Oh, and Toronto, they got you covered too. From $20, at vancouvercandleco.com.
Taikan (pronounced “take-en”) is a new bag brand on the market that does a bang-up job of marrying style and practicality. Clad in fabrics ranging from durable nylon to luxe suede, their “Prowler” duffle is the weekender bag dreams are made of, and the “Sherpa” tote with room for a laptop is ideal for everyday. From $100, at taikaneverything.com.