Shop Goss: Brunette the Label's flagship a hub for "babes supporting babes"

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      Shop Goss is the Georgia Straight’s weekly feature, where we give you the lowdown on Metro Vancouver’s coolest independent boutiques—and the spirited minds behind them—that deserve a spot on your shopping radar.

      This week, we meet Miriam Alden, founder and owner of Chinatown's Brunette the Label (231 Union Street).

      Describe your business in three sentences or less.

      Brunette the Label's flagship store is a bright, warm, fun, and inviting space that welcomes all of the babes.

      How did you come to own and/or operate your own shop?

      We've had an online store for almost four years, and just felt it was the right time to open a space to call home for the brand. We are Vancouver-based—specifically, born and raised in East Vancouver—and having our own retail location in the community we're from was really important to us.

      We wanted to be able to meet our customers face-to-face and connect with them to hear what they think about our styles and fits. We also wanted to have a space where we could really implement the value we live by: babes supporting babes. We are doing this by hosting collaborative pop-in events, so we can help build and grow our businesses together!

      Plus, we needed a home to put our framed picture of Beyoncé (our muse) for all the world to see.

      My favourite brands we carry at the moment are…

      Our store is mostly Brunette the Label so that is number one, but we do carry a couple of other brands that we love.

      Lisbeth Jewelry is a beautiful jewellery collection that's handmade in Toronto, and the founder is actually Miriam’s sister, Sophie. Another brand we absolutely love is Privilege Clothing, which was created by Miriam’s best friend, Donni. This retailer shares the same value system as us and creates a variety of men's and women's garments that includes the coziest pyjamas.

      We also carry another great Vancouver-based brand, Smash and Tess. Our sister business, Brunette Showroom, represents all of these brands as a wholesaler in Western Canada.


      Ryan Pugsley


      You’re being sent to a desert island with limited Wi-Fi access for an indefinite amount of time. What three products in the shop right now would you take with you?

      A package of our socks, a sleep mask, and a short sweatsuit, because I am hoping it’s a really hot island! Oh wait, and a water bottle because I have a fear of running out of water. 

      Name a new arrival you can’t wait to show off.

      We recently collaborated with a Vancouver denim line to manufacture our first denim jacket that we can’t wait to show you! This jacket will be in-store toward end of May, and we feel it is the perfect denim jacket. Customization potential?!

      What’s the weirdest, wackiest, or most out-there item on your shelves or racks at the moment?

      Since we are a pretty casual clothing line, most of our stuff isn’t too weird or wacky but the funniest thing you may find is probably the half-drunken glass of champagne I lost during a pop-up recently. (Let me know if you find it!) So either that or our This Wine is Making Me Awesome crew


      Ryan Pugsley


      My last purchase—from the store or otherwise—was…

      We actually just had a beautiful vintage pop-in from 1914co Vintage last night, and I bought a gorgeous Christian Dior rust-coloured trench coat that I am currently wearing as I write this.

      When I’m not at the shop, you can find me…

      At the Brunette Showroom or at the barn riding my horse, Jospehine.

      What’s another local business you love?

      We work with so many local and independent boutiques, thanks to having a showroom, that it is hard to name just one. However, we love the street we are on and are so excited to be in this community.

      We always check out our neighbours’ boutiques, like Charlie & Lee (223 Union Street) and Vegan Supply Co. (250 East Pender Street); pick up lunch from all of the delicious restaurants surrounding us, such as Kokomo (611 Gore Avenue) and Kissa Tanto (263 East Pender Street); and have gone for team workouts at local studios.

      Places to go nearby

      Approx. 15 minutes away