If there’s one thing to say about Canadian fashion brands, it’s that the labels certainly keep things in the family. Joe Fresh and Pink Tartan are two of the biggest companies in the country, respectively owned by husband and wife team Joe Mimran and Kimberley Newport-Mimran. Also joining the doubles act is Lululemon founder Chip Wilson and his wife Shannon.
Lately, Lululemon has been portrayed in a less-than-favourable light, but Shannon is hoping to start afresh with her own brand, the Vancouver-based Kit and Ace, which shills something she likes to call “technical cashmere.” Just like Lululemon, it’s equally rich on price with T-shirts for men and women priced anywhere between $68 and $98 (the men’s cotton options are around $84). But what makes these basics so special is the special blend of 81 percent viscose (aka rayon), 10 percent elastane and nine percent cashmere.
Now, I’m all about finding the perfect tee with just the right amount of slouch and slump, but these pieces better be primo for me to part with 70 big ones for a plain white top. Then again, didn’t plenty of people scoff at the idea of spending upwards of $100 in the bygone days before Lululemon? The Wilson family may just have spun more rayon into gold—move over Rumpelstiltskin.
As for how you can get your hands on the tees, the brand just recently opened its first store in Vancouver’s Gastown and launched a new online store. With Chip reportedly having a heavy hand in Kit and Ace’s daily dealings, there’s no doubt the new brand will be looking for large-scale expansion. Just take the company’s mantra for further proof: “Time is precious. We know what we know and we also know there are things we don’t know. So we’re figuring it out. We’re building out local studios (pop-up type things) across North America to start conversations. This is a test. It’s also just the beginning.”