Vancouver is home to a thriving fashion industry made up of individuals committed to its growth and success. Get to know these personalities in The Inseam and discover what makes the Vancouver Fashion scene so awesome. Every month, The Inseam’s Eco Edition focuses on the innovators that shape the green movement in local fashion.


Jasper Hoodie Organic Black2

Photo courtesy of Two Birds Apparel

A lot of guys would complain that clothing options for men pale in comparison for what is available for women. There are some great local retailers and brands from Vancouver offering a good range for men, but when you look for something in the eco or ethical space, the options are even smaller.

A recent player in the market is Two Birds Apparel, founded by Daniel and Tiffany Andrew in Toronto but now located in Vancouver. Daniel and Tiffany have taken on a slow fashion approach, releasing new garments only twice a year and focusing on classic styles.

Their efforts to maintain a high standard of sustainability score major points as they source Canadian eco-friendly textiles and manufacture in Ontario. Their packaging is biodegradable or made from recycled materials, they limit transportation and therefore emissions, and 1% of sales is donated to the David Suzuki Foundation. Some pretty impressive business standards that are backing up a great line of well-made men’s basics, required for any eco man’s wardrobe.

Jessica McIlroy: How did Two Birds Apperal get started?

Daniel Andrew: When Tiffany and I met, we were both looking for something that would be beneficial to consumers and the environment. Tiffany is a professional dancer and choreographer and has had a passion for clothing design since she was young. I was working as a management consultant in corporate sustainability. Together, we combined our interests and developed a brand of Canadian-made and fashionable apparel that was focused on reducing its environmental impact.

JM: Are you guys from Vancouver originally?

DA: I grew up in Vancouver and moved to Ontario for almost a decade for university and work. Tiffany grew up north of Toronto in a small town called Huntsville. We recently moved back to Vancouver to focus our efforts with Two Birds Apparel in the Pacific Northwest market.

JM: Tell me about your background in design and the garment industry.

TA: My experience as a Creative Director comes from a wide range of projects including producing and editing video, directing and choreographing live-stage productions, wardrobe and styling, website design and interior design. I see design as an extension of self and believe any medium can lend opportunity for expression.

Lounge Trouser Tencel Blue1

Photo courtesy of Two Birds Apparel

JM: When did your interest in eco fashion and the environment come into play? Were you interested in the environment before you started Two Birds Apparel or did the awareness of eco fashion come in after you started in the industry?

TA: I have always been interested in fashion since I was a young girl. I used to sketch designs of dresses and cut up my clothes in attempt to create something new. I also had a great love of nature, growing up just outside a small town. I loved being in and a part of nature and had an understanding of its importance. I think it was only a matter of time that the two came together for me.

DA: Growing up in Vancouver gave me a real appreciation for the beauty of nature. As I grew in my corporate career, I found myself drawn to social enterprises that weren’t satisfied with the status quo of waste-heavy and cheap consumer products. I wanted to build a company I could be proud of that used environmental impact in its decision making, and I believe we have accomplished this with Two Birds Apparel.

JM: What is the philosophy behind your designs? Any specific inspirations?

TA: We appreciate good design, and are drawn to things that are natural, functional and minimalistic. I think we imparted this into our own designs, as they are simple, comfortable and work very naturally with the body.

JM: What other eco fashion designers and brands do you admire?

DA: Two of the brands I admire are Patagonia and Puma. Patagonia is very transparent with its supply chain and where its factories are located. They also offer to repair the gear they sell rather than have customers buy new replacements. Puma has done a lot of work to quantify their environmental impact in terms of water and carbon to identify where the biggest impacts are in their supply chain.

JM: Why did you decide to focus on menswear?

DA: When we first started the company we offered both men’s and women’s styles. After getting feedback from our customers and discovering the brands out there in the market, it seemed like there was a real market gap for high end men’s casual clothes with an eco focus.

DT Koa on Model 2

Photo courtesy of Two Birds Apparel

JM: How do you encourage your customers to act according to your brand values?

TA: Educating our consumers is one of our priorities as a sustainable business. We’re proud to include information on where each product was manufactured on our website and what fabrics we use. We also write informative posts on our Two Birds Lifestyle blog to help educate customers on the importance of sustainable fashion.

JM: Have you always done accessories as well? What makes them eco?

TA: We sell accessories made by a few brands that have similar values as we do, and that complement our aesthetic. WeWood makes wooden watches and Sires Crown makes wooden eyewear. In both cases, the companies use reclaimed materials wherever possible, and source wood from responsible sources. Both brands also plant trees for every product they sell.

JM: How did your relationship with the David Suzuki Foundation begin?

DA: We wanted to give back with our company, so we researched different not-for-profits that focus on the environment. As a kid from Vancouver, I grew up admiring David Suzuki, and the work the Foundation does is all related to improving the environment and tackling climate change. I reached out to DSF and they were receptive of our idea.

JM: Tell me about the future plans and goals for Two Birds Apparel.

DA: Our primary goal is to establish Two Birds Apparel as a leader in online retail for men’s eco fashion. One of the big considerations in taking an online approach is about the carbon emissions from our shipments to customers. We are working on measuring our carbon impact from these shipments as well as a plan to become completely carbon neutral.

You can purchase Two Birds Apparel goods online and read more about their initiatives and actions on their blog.