Forget tree-huggers, Birkenstocks and flannel. West-coasters have a style all their own and Vancouver, one of the most hip cities in the West, has become a must-visit shopping destination in Canada. We catch up with local stylist, Luisa Rino, to give us the scoop on the hottest boutiques in Lotus Land to hit your pocket-book.
Some might argue that trying to find the perfect fitting pair of jeans is about as easy as finding a flattering bikini – in January. Rino suggests a visit to Dutil Denim (303 West Cordova Street, 604-688-8892), a hot little denim shop with dozens and dozens of brands – and they aren’t the usual selection of Sevens or H jeans. “You can get the exclusive designer denim that isn’t anywhere else in the city, sometimes even in Canada. They have every shape, cut, colour you can imagine, even baby jeans! Now you can sport your skinnies with your mini-me too!” www.dutildenim.com
From denim to feminine – Miss Coquette out near the University of British Columbia (4372 West 10th Avenue West, 604-221-2888) is worth the trek. This boutique is stocked with all things feminine. Most notable is their expansive dress selection. Expect to see a good range of Evan & Dean, the hottest new designers to come out of Vancouver “who will be hitting the radar hard come spring” says Rino. Miss Coquette also boasts a solid selection of Nougat from the UK. “The dress is such a great staple item for every woman’s wardrobe, especially now with the tent dress being a must-have for spring!”. www.miscoquette.comTo mark your claim as a bonafide fashionista, it is key you find a fashion piece that no one else has. One of a Few owner Michelle Rizzardo has a great styling sense and imports unique pieces you won’t find anywhere else. From flowing tops to hip bottoms, she’s got it all. Located in the heart of Gastown (354 Water Street, 604-605-0685) with entrances off both Cordova and Water Street, the boutique is so refreshing to enter with it’s all white interior. “It’s kind of like going through a really stylish friends closet,” says Rino. www.oneofafew.com
While fashion is most readily seen on the outside, ensure you look your best underneath those designer duds with the proper lingerie. Look no further than to Change, new to Vancouver and located in Kitsilano (2815 West Broadway, 604-742-0557), “They should have a tagline that says go from a B to a D without surgery,” says Rino. Yes ladies, you are most likely wearing the wrong size bra. “That measurement … 32, 34, 36, is actually supposed to correspond to the bra-length. How novel? Those numbers actually mean something,” Rino deadpans. “What changes is the cup size.” The boutique offers sizes up to J plus prices that are affordable. Think of the quality (and sexiness) of La Perla with the affordability (and comfort) of Wonder Bra. “It’s amazing that the right fitting bra can open up a whole new set of wardrobe options,” says Rino. “You no longer have to fear the tight, white fitted tee!” www.change.com
And what’s the best way to wrap up a dynamic looking outfit than with an eye-catching accessory like a sparkly coctail ring or on-trend bibbed necklace? Head to Jeweliette for possibly the best and broadest collection of fashion jewelry in the city. “All the stylists in the city pull from Jeweliette,” gushes Rino. “It’s like a New York showroom because of the variety and they are so ahead of and on trend. They know what’s coming and are often doing it 6 months before anyone else!”. Look for Elsa Corsi designs – a gorgeous take on vintage style and art deco inspired rhinestone pieces. Not only is there a great range of jewelry in this hot little boutique, but expect to find a range of prices as well. www.jeweliette.com
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