Fashion week is the perfect time to think about just what goes into the creation of Canadian-made garments. Judy Cornish, one of the two designers and founders behind the Toronto-based brand Comrags, says that, while Canadian consumers are “becoming increasingly aware of where their clothing is made and endeavouring to make better choices,” it’s undeniable that globalization and the nature of the fast-fashion industry can cloud the public’s perception of how clothing is made – and why it’s worth it to invest in a locally produced piece.
Comrags by the numbers
1983: The year the Comrags brand was established.
2,000: The square footage of the retail/studio space Comrags owns in Toronto’s Dundas West neighbourhood.
7: The number of full-time, year-round staff who Cornish and her partner, Joyce Gunhouse, employ in their studio.
30: The approximate number of hours it takes to create a sample of a garment, depending on the difficulty of the pattern and how many other pieces are being made at the same time.
2: The approximate number of days it takes to grade each sample size by hand; patterns are graded in five sizes: extra small, small, medium, large and extra large.
95: The percentage of Comrags customers who are Canadian.
4: The number of staff at the Comrags boutique.
40–50: The usual number of units Comrags creates for each piece they design.
Photography by Joseph Saraceno. Styling by Tricia Hall/Judy Inc.