For over 30 years, Vancouver has been an epicenter of the outdoor gear industry. Its modern and diverse urban culture coupled with its timeless naturescapes has made Vancouver the place of living the high life in the great outdoors. A pioneer in Vancouver’s outdoor gear industry, Westcomb is a leader in the re-emergence of world class, locally made products, through its design to production process, called the Shift Model.
With the Westcomb headquarters, design studio, manufacturing, and warehouse facility all in Vancouver, this centralized design-to-production model allows for a nearly zero carbon footprint. No long flights to oversee production. No long shipments between warehouses, and more importantly, greater oversight into the development and production of each garment.
“I can walk from the drawing table to the production floor to see and feel my designs in progress,” says Alan Yiu, Creative Director. “Having such close face-to-face collaboration across the company ensures the absolute highest quality garment in terms of fit and workmanship is delivered”
Our manufacturing heritage in the outdoor apparel industry spans over 30 years, well before Westcomb was born. Garment production is in our DNA where we understand the detailing and techniques needed to make seams strong and straight, and the fit functional and balanced.
The design team works closely to ensure fit, comfort, and versatility. Pattern making is part art and part science. To take a flat piece of cloth and fit it to the curves of the human body requires a keen understanding of fabrics, function, and ergonomics. Decades of experience have provided our pattern makers with the know how to ensure that each Westcomb piece looks and feels tailored to your body.
Every operator in Westcomb’s high tech manufacturing facility is an expert in their trade. With a keen eye for details, each ensures that micro-taped seams are watertight, articulated sleeves curve just right, and seams lay flat and are straight. For those that appreciate the highest quality, you’ll appreciate the detailing of construction and admire the impeccable fit.
Rapid developments in fabric technology and the increasing diversity of outdoor activity require creative solutions that meet your adventure needs. With the Shift Model, planning, prototype development, and production are all in Vancouver which means that you get next generation technical fabrics in innovative designs in a matter of months rather than years, keeping you ahead of the crowd.
Never frivolous, always necessary. Each Westcomb piece is meticulously designed and constructed for maximum performance and comfort. “Aesthetic versatility is the outcome of our design process where nothing superfluous is added,” says Yiu. “Each piece is the result of a specific performance demand where seam lines, detailing, and features are intentional. There is no excess.”
From concept to your closet, Westcomb is guided by the goal to enhance human-powered adventures through innovation. Varied activities demands unrivaled protection across different contexts and climates without sacrificing comfort. Westcomb uses the most innovative materials engineered by the industries leading suppliers to satisfy this demand. Waterproof fabrics that breath and stretch. Natural fibers that wick sweat away when hot, yet insulate when cool. Coupled with unique features and creative design elements, Westcomb is perfect for the multisport athlete that needs to be prepared for anything.
“I don’t spend much time thinking about Westcomb. That’s because high altitudes and low temperatures tend to focus my few remaining brain cells on other things, like whether the new route will go and how solid the protection is, if my partner is warm enough and if we’re moving fast enough. Technical first ascents in the more remote ranges of the Trans-Himalaya make a lot of demands. I like to hand the most basic ones off my clothes, and then not have to think about them again.
The designers at Westcomb have understood this: whether it’s shell gear, fleece layers or Arctic-spec down, it goes on and you forget it. You’re warm and you’re dry; the wind can’t get in, and neither can the snow. You’re comfortable not just for standing, but also for moving and climbing: the length is right, the sleeve is right, the pockets are right, the vents are right, the zippers are right … So, those maxed-out brain cells are free to focus – on the climb, the mountain and the range, on the experience of being out there, and maybe even on a photo or two.”
– Dr. Bruce Normand
2010 Piolets d’Or award recipient