Canada Goose aims to celebrate and support Inuit craftsmanship

A limited edition parka collection is part of a CSR effort to give back to a place at the core of the brand: Canada's North.

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By Jessica Vomiero

With the release of its Project Atigi collection, Canada Goose is launching an entrepreneurship program for Inuit communities as part of a campaign that further highlights its connection to northern Canada.

The bespoke parka collection was designed by 14 seamstresses representing nine communities across the four Inuit regions – Inuvialuit, Nunatsiavut, Nunavut and Nunavik. The parkas from the original collection will not be recreated and will only be available for sale on the company website, but, in an attempt to showcase Canada Goose’s “authentic, meaningful partnerships,” Penny Brook, CMO at Canada Goose, says the Project Atigi line will still be displayed in Canada Goose stores around the world.

atigiparkas

Brook explained that this initiative was designed to provide economic opportunities for Inuit women. In addition to paying the designers a commission for their work, all the proceeds from the sale of the collection will go towards Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, a national organization working to improve the lives of Inuit communities in Canada.

The campaign’s promotional video posted on YouTube and its online store focuses largely on the Inuit women behind the designs.

In the video, the long history of sewing in Canada’s Inuit regions is emphasized as the women discuss how these skills are passed down through generations, so their daughters can sew warm winter clothes for their own families. A profile of each designer can also be found on the company’s social channels.

According to Brook, Canada Goose’s brand has always been linked to the Canadian north, and the project is “the outcome of what we’ve learned being on the ground and working with people in the North, the original parka makers.”

The brand has often highlighted its relationship to Canada in its marketing, such as in its “Generations of Warmth” and “Out There” campaigns that focused on the parka’s abilities to stand up to the rugged environments found in the North. In “Generations of Warmth,” which was launched over the 2018 holiday season, the brand told stories about the human connections that can be bridged through braving the cold.

The new line, though, is part of a broader CSR efforts to celebrate and support northern Canada.

Brook explained that through the company’s Resource Centres program, Canada Goose has been donating fabric and materials to Inuit communities so they can create their own clothing. The brand has also donated over $2 million to Polar Bears International (PBI), an organization dedicated to preserving polar bears and their habitats. As part of that partnership, the company released a line of blue parkas, with proceeds from the collection going to the organization and its effort to fight climate change.