Vexillologists rejoice! Long before Dr. Sheldon Cooper had Fun with Flags on the hit series, The Big Bang Theory, Susan Braverman’s mother, Doreen Braverman, founded The Flag Shop in Vancouver back in 1975. Susan, now the President of Textile Image and The Flag Shop, recently invited media to the leading manufacturer in Canada for flags leading up to the 50th anniversary of the Canadian flag.
“We have all experienced the emotion and overwhelming sense of pride that occurs when the Canada flag is displayed for all to see. It is the symbol of Canada that brings us together as a country!” ~ Susan Braverman
The Flag Shop was the first retail flag shop in the world and all of their locations across Canada make their flags in-house.
I popped into the shop at 1615 Powell Street to browse the flag selection and chat with Hanna, who has been making flags since 1978. With the sounds of a sewing machine rumbling away in the background, she walked me through the process of making durable and strong Canadian flags, starting with the maple leaf appliqué which gets sewn onto a centre panel.
Unravelling folds of a newly finished flag, I was introduced to details such as ropes and toggles, velcro, grommets, sleeves, and extra stitching on the fly end.
The process has changed a lot in the last forty years, Hanna told me as she pointed to a giant frame for screen printing the Canadian flag that hung from the workshop’s rafters. These days someone can simply email you a file, with a high enough dpi, and they can turn it into a high-quality flag or banner. Even still, there is a lot of skill involved, especially when it comes to making a product that’s durable, and rendered correctly really large scales.
You can shop online and in-store for flags and banners of all shapes and sizes, for provinces and states, countries of the world, Vancouver 2010 Olympic flags, sports team flags (like these awesome new Whitecaps FC flags), pride flags, and more. It’s also the only place in Canada that you’ll find the transgender flag.
Today only, you can pick up a 3′ X 6′ appliqué sewn Canada flag for just $50 ahead of the 50th anniversary of the maple leaf flag we know and love, happening on February 15th.
100% Canadian owned with headquarters on Powell Street in Vancouver, The Flag Shop currently has 13 locations from coast to coast across Canada. Follow them on Twitter and Facebook for more information, and all of your flag needs!