The Making of an S&R Denim Co Jacket

A brief look inside S&R Denim Co production..

People often question why our products cost more than a garment made overseas, and hopefully this will give a little insight into our investment in each piece of clothing we produce.   This is the first of a three part series, in future posts we will go through the production process of our aprons, as well as go into more detail of the actual sewing steps for each product.  This first post is an overview of the entire production process.

We make made-to-order jackets and vests for men and women, all in our small studio here in Vancouver, BC, Canada.  With each order, the customer can choose their fabric, stitching colour, button and rivet colour, hood or collar, liner fabric, and additional pockets.  Every jacket and vest is made from beginning to end by our small team, and even with the standard list of customization choices, each jacket becomes unique based on the combination of details chosen by the customer.

Screen Shot 2016-01-17 at 2.43First, we’ll jump right to an example of what we make.  Below is our Men’s Hooded Denim Jacket in espresso-brown denim with a charcoal denim yoke (shoulders) and light charcoal liner.  This jacket also had the addition of in-seam exterior hand pockets at the hip, as well as interior storage pockets at the lap.

The jacket order comes in either through our website, by email, or in this case the client was from Vancouver and came in for a personal fitting in our studio.

Shaun Layton JacketNext, we pull the patterns. We’re onto our fourth edition of our jacket and vest patterns,  making adjustments, additions and revisions along the way.  This year we’ve again revised the fit in the mens patterns, made some changes to the construction of both the mens and womens garments, as well as added new features to all styles such as in-seam hand pockets and interior storage pockets.

_DSC0687Each pattern group has a number of options, such as collar or hood style, additional pockets and of course sizing.  Before each pattern is laid out for cutting the pieces are sorted into what is necessary based on the customers customization requests.

_DSC0684 Continue reading

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S&R in Scout Magazine


Scout Magazine is Vancouver’s go-to guide for all things food, dining, and culture. We are very happy to have our aprons profiled by contributor, bartender-extraordinaire, and Search & Rescue Denim Co. apron wearer, Shaun Layton in Scout’s Vancouverism section under COOL THING WE WANT #469. Check out the article here.

A few highlights from Shaun’s visit to our Strathcona studio to order his custom apron:

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Torafuku – New Vancouver Restaurant Wearing S&R Aprons in Kitchen and on Global TV

New to Vancouver’s restaurant scene, Torafuku, has opened its doors this past weekend. The team from Torafuku are known for their local food truck, Le Tigre and have now expanded their culinary presence into a modern and innovative pan-Asian restaurant. Visit their Main St. restaurant to try their awesome and affordable eats and you’ll see their kitchen staff decked out in fully customized Search & Rescue Denim Co Aprons.

Assistant Sous Chef Sandy Chen, Executive Chef Clement Chan, and Sous Chef Danvee Kwok

The Brown Cow

Assistant Sous Chef Sandy Chen, Executive Chef Clement Chan, and Sous Chef Danvee Kwok

Firing up something delicious on the stove

This morning, Executive Chef Clement Chan gave a demonstration of their Dirty Birdy Fried Rice on Global TV while wearing his custom S&R Denim Co apron:

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Jamie Oliver Wearing S&R Denim Apron!

Written by Jill Magee-Fosdick on

Jamie Oliver wearing Search and Rescue Denim Co. Apron

Chef Jamie Oliver (left) in his Search & Rescue Denim Co. Apron
(Louis’ apron is not one of ours)

We are thrilled and honoured to see that chef and food activist, Jamie Oliver is wearing his custom Search & Rescue Denim apron on his first ever Real Time Recipes episode on Jamie’s Food Tube. We are long time admirers of Jamie’s work as both a chef and a champion of eating well.

Jamie Oliver wearing Search and Rescue Denim Co. Apron

Jamie Oliver wearing Search and Rescue Denim Co. Apron

Jamie Oliver wearing Search and Rescue Denim Co. Apron

Chef Jamie Oliver in his Search & Rescue Denim Co. Apron

Jamie’s Apron is a custom take on our Chef’s Apron in Brown Duck Canvas with Brown Horween Chromexcel Leather X-Back Straps.

Jamie Oliver wearing Search and Rescue Denim Co. ApronJamie Oliver wearing Search and Rescue Denim Co. ApronJamie Oliver wearing Search and Rescue Denim Co. Apron

The lovely food!

This was a great candid episode filmed in real time. The food looks amazing as does Mr. Oliver in his apron.

Watch the episode:

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S&R Mentioned in the NY Times!

Written by Jill Magee-Fosdick on

New York Times, June 23rd, 2015

Last week, the New York Times featured an article discussing the rise of the apron from beyond the simple white kitchen apron to the world of fashion and function, and Search & Rescue Denim was mentioned! Does that mean we’ve made it??

“…And not only on the catwalk, but also in the kitchen. No wonder we have appropriated the once-utilitarian chef’s apron as our own. It doesn’t just protect from sauce splatter, grease stains and beet juice; it also projects personality and aesthetic choice, no matter the skill level or the ambition.”

“There are workmen’s aprons, which are the culinary equivalent of streetwear: hardy leather and denim or selvage numbers with grommets and pockets that telegraph a tough-chef look, the better to carve up a goat and roast its carcass. The model might be the Stanley & Sons leather lap apron ($143), or the Search & Rescue split-leg apron (about $195). It’s expensive to look so hard-core.”

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Chef Carolynn Spence of the Chateau Marmont

Written by Jill Magee-Fosdick on

Chateua Marmont, Search and Rescue Denim Co Blog

The Chateau Marmont

The Chateau Marmont is a hip and historic Los Angeles landmark. It is, simply, a gothic castle that evokes old-Hollywood and attracts an array of patrons including a large number of celebrities.

“Chateau is the perfect co-conspirator; as Harry Cohn, founder of Columbia Pictures said in 1939, “If you must get in trouble, do it at the Chateau Marmont.” You can be yourself or, better yet, be whomever you want to be; don’t be surprised if your visit brings out your inner Howard Hughes, your Greta Garbo, your Jim Morrison. As public or private as you wish – there are those in residence who are desperate to be seen and others who choose to remain anonymous. The eccentric and highly personal history of the place, its luscious rich past, its tarnished patina are all part of the charm.” – A.M. Homes

Celebrated Executive Chef, Carolynn Spence, heads the Chateau Marmont’s famed restaurant evoking a blend of classic and punk rock style, wearing her chef whites, Search & Rescue Denim Co. Chef’s Apron, and large collection of colourful tattoos.

Chef Carolynn Spence, Instagram @spence__73

The restaurant at the Marmont is known for both it’s ambiance and awesome selection of traditional American fare. Spence and her team serve a range of classics such as Buttermilk Fried Chicken and the Chateau Burger to more refined dishes including the Arancini of Black Truffle with Wild Mushrooms & Parmesan and the Bass & Shrimp with Avocado & Garlic Lime Beurre Blanc. There restaurant at the Marmont has something for everyone to enjoy, whether its the beautiful terrace or the fine food, however, it is likely a blend of both.

Chateua Marmont, Search and Rescue Denim Co Blog

The terrace at the Chateau Marmont Restaurant

Chateua Marmont, Search and Rescue Denim Co Blog

The terrace at the Chateau Marmont Restaurant



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Collaboration with Aunts & Uncles for The Deighton Cup

Written by Jill Magee-Fosdick on

Aunts and Uncles Spring/Summer 2015 (Search and Rescue Denim Co Collab)

Aunts & Uncles Spring/Summer Campaign 2015

This summer we are excited to team up with German leather lifestyle brand, Aunts & Uncles, to create custom aprons that will be showcased at the 7th Annual Deighton Cup. Aunts & Uncles create unique, high-quality leather purses, bags, wallets, belts, and wrap bracelets for both men and women. To create these special aprons, we will be using salvaged leather from Aunts & Uncles bags. Keep an eye out for a future post unveiling the results of this collaboration, or if you’re in Vancouver, check them out live at the Deighton Cup on July 25th at the Hasting Racecourse.

Guests at the Deighton Cup (Search and Rescue Denim Co.)

Horse Racing at the Deighton Cup (Search and Rescue Denim Co.)

The Deighton Cup at Hastings Racecourse
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S&R Denim Co Fall/Winter 2014

Search & Rescue Denim Co Oilskin Motorcycle Jacket

This week we are having a launch party here in Vancouver to celebrate the release of our Fall/Winter Mens and Womens denim collection. We have been working on our new denim jackets and vests, and our mens oilskin canvas motorcycle jackets, and we’re all ready to show them off! A lot has happened in the last few months at S&R. We now have a dedicated production studio in Vancouver, three designers and production staff, and a marketing assistant. Things have been growing quickly, and we’re super excited about all the new products we’re launching in the next year.  Everything will still be made in house by our team, and will include mens and womens jeans,  an expanded denim outerwear line, and possibly even some pea coats and duffel coats.

Search & Rescue Denim Co Custom Denim Jacket

All of our jackets and vests are custom made to order, so you can pick your denim, thread colour, rivet colour, hood or collar, and even a custom liner for the inside. Our goal was to make a product that was totally personalized to the client, and I think we’ve succeeded at that.

Search & Rescue Denim Co Customizable Denim Vest

If you’re in the Vancouver area next weekend, feel free to come by and check out our “open house” launch party!




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Search & Rescue Denim Co. Documentary Short

Recently we’ve been working with Baxter Redfern of Redfern Media on a short mini-doc about where Search & Rescue Denim came from, and a what our business is all about.   I’m really happy with how it came out, and I think does a great job of representing our business. Check it out!

Search & Rescue Denim – Handmade from RedfernMedia on Vimeo.

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Search & Rescue Denim Co. at Gastown Tattoo Parlour

 Things have been busy at S&R over the last couple of months. We have two new staff members helping sew aprons, and we’ve been adding retail outlets at the rate of about one a month. This week, we teamed up with Vancouver’s Gastown Tattoo Parlour with a house branded line of GTP aprons. Gastown Tattoo has always been a big supporter of our brand, so it’s great to finally have a line of our aprons stocked there.  You can pick up one of the GTP aprons from the shop, or drop them an email to order one online.

We’ve also added some new aprons over on the S&R site, including our new X-Back Craftspersons apron, and coming soon is our new Brewmaster apron. Check em out!

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Search & Rescue Denim, our first retail outlet

It’s been a good week for Search & Rescue Denim Co. Today we hit a new milestone, our aprons are being sold in a real brick and mortar retail establishment, The Shop Vancouver.

I love motorcycles, fashion and coffee, so The Shop was a perfect fit for us. We created a custom apron in collaboration with The Shop, and I think they turned out really well. Hopefully this garners some more exposure for our brand.  It’s actually been a good week for our little business, we also landed our first “industry” deal, outfitting all the bartenders at the Brassneck Brewpub on Main St here in Vancouver.

Bit by bit, we’re gonna make it.

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A bit of competition.

In the past two years, a certain backpack company based in Vancouver, BC, but manufactured overseas, has become incredibly popular, and truly saturated the market.  Suddenly the humble backpack, duffel bag and even laptop case became a mode for self expression.  There have been other brands before, such as Jansport, North Face and more, but none had been embraced so wholly in streetwear culture.  It’s time for a little competition.

This week I discovered a new brand of bag from the UK that I think has some great style notes, is gaining popularity in the rest of the world, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it took off here too. Enter: Mi-Pac (

Their line of colourful backpacks, duffel bags and accessory cases look sharp and come in  a variety of prints and style. I just picked up their Denim Dye (of course) Duffel bag.  I love all the print styles, and I think they compliment a lot of modern street style looks.

Their backpacks are pretty dope too:

Simple, nice colour and print combinations and so, so many choices. When my bag arrives in the mail, I’ll be able to attest to quality, but for now, I think they look pretty damn good.

In other news, I did something super narcissistic, and put myself in our most recent Search & Rescue Denim ad on  So that was fun. 500,000 people can see my receding hair line. Heyo!

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Style on the Street

I really liked the way this gentleman layered denim with a dress-wear vest and tie.  It’s like contemporary punk. I dig it. .

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The New Goth

Right now

we are (at least in North America) in the throws of the grunge revival (blame Urban Outfitters). Shredded denim shorts and lace over vintage oversize rock tees and teenagers that are proclaiming their love for Nirvana and music festivals. I hate it.   I was never into grunge (even though I am old enough that I lived through it) and honestly I can’t wait for it to be over. I have yet to see a pair of high waist cutoff Levis shorts actually make a girl look…good.

If what’s going on in Europe is any indication, this trend is on the way out, and a new one that I much prefer is on the way in. A much darker trend. Goth is coming back, and maybe with a bit of industrial thrown in for good measure.

Now, this isn’t the goth of years past, with ill fitting bondage pants and more piercings than you can count. It’s more of goth revisited – all black, of course, but broken up with white contrasts, leather and some street-wear inspiration thrown in.  I guess it’s more of a watered down goth, but I like it.

I have only seen really good examples of this trend coming out of France, and other than the few people in Vancouver that never grew out of the original style, I haven’t seen this nuvo-goth trend show up yet. But I hope it does.  Here are a few examples of what I’m talking about. They aren’t fully formed permutations of this trend, but I think you’ll understand where I’m going with this –

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I’m not really back. Sort of.

Hello blog, my old friend, it’s nice to see you, once again.

The last three months have been crazy.  My business has grown, I have a partner in the venture now, and we are working towards opening our little Search & Rescue Denim Co factory in east Vancouver.  Honestly, I hate blog posts where people are like “ahhhhh…so sorry I haven’t blogged in a while, but I’m back….please don’t forget me!” I’m not sorry. I’m super stoked on where my business is going, and I don’t plan on slowing down any time soon.  Although, I must say I did start to miss my walks through Vancouver, shooting stylish people on the street and collecting photos of what I think good style is.  That’s really why I’m back. I miss making my tiny little mark on the fashion world. Tobias Tietchen in his S&R Denim Apron. Photo credit to Christian Bendel

So, I can’t really say that I’m back, because I’m still working 12-16hr days on S&R Denim, and I can’t promise that I will be posting new content daily, or even weekly. But I miss my little outlet, and I want to make an effort to start sharing on here again. I appreciate all the people that I still see regularly visiting this blog, and I want to start that conversation with them again.

So….lets do this again. Just with a few more aprons.

-WillGuen Douglas of Salon Serpent in the Netherlands in her S&R apron, being awesome as always.


Dustin modeling two of our new aprons, the Get Lucky Bartenders apron, and our most recent tattooists apron.

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Search & Rescue Denim Co, or why I’ve been on blogging hiatus.

I haven’t posted in a couple of months because I have been trying to work myself to death, apparently.  I am now running the menswear department of the Kitsilano, Vancouver Urban Outfitters, which takes up 50 hours or so of my week.  But this was not enough. I decided I should start a business, and start a business I did.

I created Search & Rescue Denim Co. 

I started out by designing and making a waxed-denim work apron for my tattooist friend Mitch Kirilo.  He liked it so much that he bought eight more for the other artists at Gastown Tattoo,  the tattoo shop he co-owns, and a couple more for some friends at Steveston Tattoo out in Richmond, BC.  From there I started working on improving the aprons, and making some variations that I would eventually put up on a new web site.

A few weeks later, Mitch posted some pictures of the aprons he bought to his 6000 followers on Instagram. Then the orders started coming in, and I knew I was really on to something. Since then I have had orders coming from all over the USA and Canada, and I haven’t stopped sewing since.

In two weeks I will be attending the Vancouver Tattoo and Culture festival, and hopefully selling some aprons and taking some orders.  Mitch and Ed Miller from Gastown Tattoo have been kind enough to let me put some product at their booth during the show, and I hope to get some great exposure from this.

So, for now, my regular blog posts have been replaced with all night sewing sessions. I’ve taken a break from the blog before, but I always come back.  For the time being, I would like to start getting at least one new blog post per week up. Those that have continued following my blog, thanks, and I hope to be writing more soon.

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Style Butcher Feature: London Alexander Fashion Show 2013

This Saturday I was invited to Fortune nightclub in Vancouver to view the Spring/Summer 2013 and Fall/Winter 2013 from designer London Alexander.  He is a menswear designer based here in Vancouver, and I really love his take on contemporary street-wear. His looks are very clean, but he does incorporate some bold patterns. Here are some of my favorite shots that I took from the runway.

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Generic Surplus – Los Angeles

I just discovered this new footwear brand out of Los Angeles, and I really love their new spring footwear, so I thought I would share a few of my favorites from their new collection.

Founded in Los Angeles as an extension of The Generic Man, Generic Surplus aims to continually push the evolution of everyday shoe design while simultaneously capturing the spirit and aesthetic of the city’s diverse, modern-day urban landscape. From the desert to the sea and places in between, their shoes aptly reflect the authentic nature of the music, art and fashion scenes they, and their wearers, are so connected to.

As with previous collections, Generic has blended street and dress styles, like the suede Deck shoe and canvas Ventura with it’s pop-coloured sole.

Also returning for Spring/Summer 2013 is OBEY, fusing their classic street-wear aesthetic with Generic Surplus’  sleek approach to footwear design.

New to women’s foot wear this season is a product of the collaboration between Generic and Obey: The Desert Boot. This ankle-high style is available in chocolate suede and black leather, and features a row of studs that is very on trend.

I’m really digging this new collection, and if you are too you can check out the rest of their offerings over at  There is lots more to see there, including new shoes from their collaboration with Comme Des Garcons.

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50 Shades of Yohji – Day 5

iPhone be damned, today’s outfit is actually all black, but it came out with blue tones. Anyways, here’s day 5 of the Yohji project.

T-Shirt & Jacket: All Saints | Cardigan: J Lindeberg | Jeans: Diesel | Shoes: Florsheim | Necklace: Love, Nail, Tree

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50 Shades of Yohji – Day 4

It’s day 4 of the 50 Shades of Yohji project. Ta-da!

Leopard print shirt and collar chains: Top Man |  Denim Jacket – BLK DNM | Vegan Leather hoodie: American Apparel | Jeans: Comune | Shoes: Florsheim

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