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North Vancouver clothing brand started by high school students

March 07, 2023


The In The Coeur brand is based on selling comfortable clothing pieces like sweatpants and sweaters, in what they describe as a “Gen Z style and aesthetic.” (Sarah Chew/CityNews)

Note: Both Lindsay and Leah Park are students at Handsworth Secondary.

By Sarah Chew, City News Everywhere.

Four high school girls from North Vancouver have a pretty impressive group project that’s not for extra credit. They are running a clothing business called In The Coeur.

The brand is based on selling comfortable clothing pieces like sweatpants and sweaters, in what they describe as a “Gen Z style and aesthetic.”

Ara Thiagarajah, a Grade 11 student and the creative director for In The Coeur, says the brand came together to fill a space that they thought was missing.

“We didn’t see things on the market that we all really loved, and so we were like, ‘let’s bring this to life,'” Ara said.

“In The Coeur gives you a way to express your youth from [the] perspective of Gen Z,” she says.

“We are young, and we have these new ideas and new designs, of which you could express your youth with.”

In The Coeur’s creators are two pairs of sisters, each pair having one sister in Grade 11 and one in Grade 9.

After spending eight months planning, they group says the store opened up for business in October of last year.

The sisters say that through growing their business, it has helped them grow up too.

“It’s helped me grow to be more responsible. It’s been a challenge. There’s been a lot of learning experiences. Like one time we stayed up until 3 a.m. packing a bunch of orders. That was a bit of a challenge, especially on a school night,” Aru Thiagarajah, a Grade 9 student and the technical operations manager and writer at In The Coeur, said.

Although the teams says starting their business as minors hasn’t been easy, they’ve made it work. But in order to get up and running, they also needed the help from their parents to sign legal forms and to start bank accounts.

Although they needed adult help to get started legally, Leah Park, the operations, communications, and finance manager of the company, says the group has worked hard to fund and invest in the business.

“We use our own money. So, from Christmas gifts or birthday gifts, we’ve invested that into this. And we have also – prior to opening the business – we had a depot account here,” Leah said.

“We sold our old clothes, unused clothes, that are pretty new, and we put that up for sale so we can earn some money and put it to funding for our business,” Leah said.

So far, customer’s from all over North America have bought their designs, and the team says they hope the company will help be a launch pad for their dream careers after they graduate.

Lindsay Park, the marketing and influencer manager, says they hope to be an inspiration to others.

“Our goal is to reach out to other Gen Z’s and connect with them, and inspire them to also start a brand like us, or just to get everyone excited about our brand.”

The friends and sisters all say they’ve enjoyed the collaborative experience.

“We learned new things about each other, but have also been able to bring our personalities through our clothes and share that with the world,” Ara said.