Canada Goose Factory Tour
How an iconic Canadian parka company is taking their handmade parkas in a new direction
Nothing quite signifies cold like the image of a bundled-up kid with arms splayed to the sides. For those who'd rather minimize the bulk and unnatural limb positions, Canada Goose is in the midst of reinventing their typically function-over-fashion parka with more street-ready style. When the brand recently invited Cool Hunting on a tour of its factory in Toronto, we went along to learn all about their iconic parkas.
Canada Goose's appeal rests on two pertinent facts—the jackets are made entirely on Canadian soil by Canadian hands and the quality is irrefutable—a process we saw first-hand on Canada Goose's factory floor. Starting in the design room, cutting patterns are developed and prototypes are stored. The jackets are cut out of Canada Goose's proprietary blend of Arctic-Tech fabric, in one of their several heritage colors. They're then stitched by hand and filled with different combinations of goose and duck down, using an ingenious device invented by former Canada Goose owner David Reiss that measures down by volume instead of weight.
After finishing touches, quilting and trimming with coyote fur, the jackets are packaged, and shipped all over the globe from one of Canada Goose's eight factories. Each jacket features Canada Goose's signature design features, implemented for function in an Arctic environment—reflective tape, coyote fur, and grab loops on the neck and shoulders. Their parkas are standard wear among everyone who has to work in extreme temperatures, from Hollywood grips who stay on set all night to the champion dog-musher Lance Mackey, whose custom-designed parka has extra water bottle pockets on the interior and an extra-large ruff.
Their reputation for quality—as well as their luxury prices—have made the jacket something of a status symbol among those in colder climes. Along with the police officers and park rangers whom the parka was originally intended for, Canada Goose also includes club bouncers among its fans, and its street appeal spread from there. With that in mind, Canada Goose has started developing different branches for this year, including jackets by acclaimed Japanese menswear designer Yuki Matsuda (pictured below) and a new Hybridge line, which we previously featured for its distinct gender-specific insulation.
Prices range from $400 for the Hybridge line to several thousand for the Yuki Matsuda collection. Canada Goose parkas sell online or at select locations.