top of page

Let's talk Fashion!!

Updated: Aug 17, 2023

Vancouver’s fashion… something that has been a little bit controversial with our readers. Do people dress well in this city, or is it the other way around?? Both things have been stated as true, and that’s why we decided to ask an expert about it!

Why should this matter? Well, moving to another city frequently presents people with the opportunity to start again. They can be whoever they want, and one of the best ways we people have found to showcase who we are, what we believe in and our personalities is through clothing! What people see is what they first usually perceive of you. That’s why clothing has been so important for people throughout the years… what we wear and the way we wear, it is one of the best ways or us to send a message out there.

So… what kind of message do Vancouverites portray?

Let’s find out!

Meet Esmeralda! A professional Image consultant and fashion designer. She loves helping people out by aiding them in finding their own style and boosting their image and their self-perception along with it. After finishing her fashion design studies in Mexico and Spain, she came to Vancouver. Currently studying Digital Marketing diploma, she is looking forward to mixing both her expertise in fashion and design with the marketing skills she is about to acquire to continue helping people out through her work.

So… you heard that some of our students were divided in their opinion of how people dress here in Vancouver. What do you think about that? How well do you think people dress here?

Well, to be honest, I believe it totally depends on the culture from which people are coming from (and by which standard we are defining “being well dressed”). Vancouver is a city with plenty of cultural backgrounds and, being so, the way people dress is obviously a reflection

of the environment they grew up in, and what their values and beliefs are as well.

So obviously, someone who grew up in an orthodox Hindi family will dress quite differently than someone who was born and raised in Mexico City, for example.

Also, it is not only about the culture, but also the socioeconomic status they have, their age, and another really important factor… A lot of people don’t know their own style! I mean, which style would suit them best based on their body type, personality and personal taste.

That’s a lot of factors that contribute to how people dress in Vancouver! Would you say that the seasons are also one important contributing factor?

Remarkably important! Especially in a city like Vancouver in which the weather conditions in each season are super pronounced. In fact, I have noticed that people here te nd to be better dressed during the summer! And I’m sure it’s due to the fact that not only people are more comfortable with wearing fewer layers of clothes, because when it’s cold you mostly just care about not dying frozen 😂, but also because, during summer, people are way more energetic and happy here, you can definitely feel the effect that the summer has on this city, it’s impressive!

So… before we move to another question, we wanted you to clarify, in your opinion, what does it mean to be well dressed? And why should this matter to people?

Well… it’s not an easy answer, because it depends on multiple factors as we discussed, but, to me, to be well-dressed means both to wear attractive or fashionable clothes in relation to what your environment considers to be attractive as well as to be comfortable with what you are wearing. Comfortable in the sense that you feel good, empowered, attractive with what you are wearing and that your clothes align with whatever message you want to send to society through your clothing. Maybe this could be to send a message of capability, competence, attractiveness, you can communicate plenty of things through what you wear. So being well-dressed means that the things that you are wearing align well with you and the message you want to send to others.

As for why should this matter… studies have shown that we tend to label people by looking at them in just 7 seconds! Did you know that? That’s all you need. 7 seconds and you have already, without being conscious about it, labelled people, and people labelled you back. It is not that we do this on purpose of course! But we do so anyway, so, now the question that remains is… how would you like for other people to see you in those 7 seconds? And that’s why it is so important to be well dressed.

Ok, so now that we have established what being well-dressed means. Do you have any tips for people who are trying to dress better?

Well, there are plenty of things you could do but, for starters, something you could do is to do some research and take a look into body types, colorimetry (looks the best on you), to

define your objective when picking your clothes. So, for example, you might want to pick clothes that make you look taller, or thinner and so on, and in order to do so you need

to know or have an idea of all these things I mentioned before. For example, in my case, I have a short neck, so using V-neck shirts makes me look a little bit taller, which is something I like.

Now tons of people believe that in order to be well-dressed they need to spend a loooot of money. What do you think about that?

Noooo, not at all! That’s a myth and it’s totally not necessary. Being well-dressed doesn’t mean spending a lot of money and only wearing the “best” brands.

You know, when we do image counselling for anyone the first thing we do is to do a wardrobe clean-up because I can assure you that most people have in their closets pieces of clothing that they haven’t worn in the past 6 months or even years! So the first thing we do is to get rid of that. Once that’s done then what we do is just try to look within their remaining items for those basic pieces of clothing that everyone should have, you know, a white plain t-shirt, black t-shirt, black pants, etc. And those things don’t need to be expensive at all! These basic items are always good for you to present yourself to the world with a simple and clean image without the necessity of spending a million bucks to look like that.

After all, we have discussed and what you have taught us, then what conclusion can we give to the question “Are people in Vancouver well-dressed?

Well, after establishing that this question is always answered through the eyes of the person who is asking it then the answer is: it always depends. However, I do understand why international students can easily think that people here, especially in downtown Vancouver dress well. Vancouver is a city with money, and people that grow up here value the benefits of having a good appearance and they take a lot of care of it. Therefore you see locals working on improving their bodies through diets, yoga, gym, etc. This also resonates with the natural and wellness lifestyle that the younger generations of this city like to live by!

So, I think this is the segment of people that international students referred to when they say that people in this city tend to dress quite nicely and I agree. Gen Z’s and Millennials that grew up in this city take a lot of care of their image in general and clothing

is one of them.

That’s a great observation!! Thanks for sharing that. Last but not least. If someone is interested in reaching out to you so you can give them some tips on their personal image would that be ok with you? Where can they reach you out?

For sure!! I’m always happy to help people in any way I can, especially by doing what I love. They can find me on IG as @esmeraldacac

Did you enjoy this article and find it useful? Join our THRIVVE community on Slack.

45 views0 comments


bottom of page