Quartz Co. boosts European visibility of its made-in-Canada parka collection

Quartz Co. will showcase its parka collection in a pop-up store in central Paris until the end of December. The Canadian outerwear brand, originally founded as Quartz Nature in 1997, was bought in 2015 by brothers Jean-Philippe and François-Xavier Robert, who breathed new zest into its collections. We asked them why they wanted to enter the highly competitive parka market. "I confess I hadn't heard about the brand before we learned it was up for sale. We made enquiries about it and all the feed-back we received was positive, notably for the quality of its products. We were convinced that, once we revised the cuts and the materials, and by sourcing it entirely in Quebec, the brand would have a strong potential," said Jean-Philippe Robert, Quartz Co.'s President and Creative Director.

Quartz Co. is keen to make its made-in-Quebec parkas popular in France and Europe

Proud of the nugget they unearthed, the two brothers set about giving a more urban vibe to the brand's style, and worked hard to find the right materials to make their parkas ethically sourced and sustainable. Quartz Co. uses Canadian-sourced duck down with a fill power of 650 in³/oz., one of the highest available, traceable to farms which can certify the animals’ ethical treatment. For insulating material, it also uses Isosoft 250, a Belgium-made polyester and, occasionally, Monark, a fabric made from a fibre derived from milkweed, a plant commonly found in North America, highly appreciated by the indigenous populations for its countless virtues. The brand's parkas also feature a water-repellent finish called C6, which doesn't employ perfluorinated chemicals. Quartz Co. still includes detachable fur-lined hoods on the majority of its models, though fur fashion items are increasingly unpopular in Western countries, but it highlights the fact that its fur is sourced in a "strictly responsible" fashion.

The brand's style and logo are understated - DR

Quartz Co. parkas come in three cuts, four lengths and an extended colour palette which also includes bright red, sapphire blue and olive green. The brand is distributed via over 300 retailers in some ten countries worldwide. While Canada remains its largest market, generating 60% of revenue, demand is growing in Japan, South Korea, the USA and northern Europe. "We are keen to differentiate ourselves from the competition by being 100% made in Quebec, and responsibly sourced. As for our style, it's appreciated for its understated mood, a far cry from the kind of parka sporting huge pockets and loud logos," said Jean-Philippe Robert. The Parisian pop-up store featuring Quartz Co. parkas is located in rue Saint-Claude, in the edgy Marais district, and it also offers a selection of Montreal brands shipped over by Port Franc, a company specialised in the import-export trade between France and Canada. 

Translated by Nicola Mira

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