Vancouver’s Minca started the way all good businesses do: selfishly. “I was trying to create something for myself,” explains founder Brooke Wells.
Specifically, Wells, a graphic designer by trade, wanted to rework a seemingly mundane item—one linked fondly to her childhood—so that it was fit for outdoors and in. Something that would be suitable for camping, star-gazing, alfresco concert-going, road trips, naps, picnics, beach-side lounging, and Netflix binges alike. Something that she could drape on the couch, wear as an oversized shawl, or stow in the trunk of her car for impromptu outings that demand an extra layer of comfort and warmth.
And so the Vancouver-based merchant sought to transform the humble blanket into one that’s made to both show off and go the distance—literally and figuratively. The result is Minca, a line of luxe, natural-fibre blankets that Wells hopes will accompany users during all of life’s occasions, whether that be cozying up with a book at home or exploring the West Coast.
“I use blankets a lot and always have in all areas of my life,” Wells, who launched Minca last year, explains by phone, “and I felt like there wasn’t a company that you could go to that was catering to every area of your lifestyle.”
Many of Minca’s blankets are crafted from Aussie-sourced merino wool, a premium and temperature-regulating natural fibre that also happens to be incredibly soft, lightweight, and durable. It’s hypoallergenic and antibacterial, too, making it ideal for one of Minca’s bestselling blankets, the Bohemia, a sizable covering with swinging, boho-chic tassels and black-and-white yarn-dye stripes. There’s also the Casa, which boasts a slightly heavier weight for chillier evenings, and the Camp, a twill-weave piece coated entirely in black—all the better to hide any unsightly stains—and featuring contrasting red stitching.
Wells became familiar with merino wool while growing up in New Zealand, where the fabric was used primarily in the manufacturing of the breathable, odour-zapping base layers she wore while ski racing with her family. “I was introduced to it at a young age,” she says, “so I really appreciate how functional the fibres are, how soft it is.”
In addition, Wells has produced a quick-drying, cotton-and-linen option decorated with a snake-charmer print that’s inspired by traditional Indian tapestries. The designs are meant to be modern, “season-less”, and adaptable for all excursions. All blankets (from $125) come with a canvas tote bag that they can be stored and carried around in. They’re designed in Vancouver and made ethically in China.
Minca’s name, meanwhile, is a reference to the Colombian region to which Wells travelled to—and fell in love with—years ago. It speaks to that same sense of adventure that she hopes her blankets will instill in others. “It’s just a very magical and very special place,” she says, “and I’ve always wanted a name to reflect that experience.”