Patagonia Calgary, Banff and Victoria are independently owned and operated by Elements Incorporated. Our doors were opened for the first time in Calgary in November 2002 and we later expanded to Banff in September of 2009. Victoria is our newest location opening in September of 2014.
We specialize and feature Western Canada's largest selection of the Patagonia brand of premier outdoor apparel, footwear, accessories and packs. We are also a leader in providing customers with a shopping experience dedicated to upholding Patagonia's values, culture and mission. These include Patagonia's mission statement: Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, and use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.
History of Patagonia Inc.
Patagonia Inc. was founded by Yvon Chouinard a man who has endeavoured to design, create and distribute innovative and reliable gear for outdoor sports. In the late 1950s he began teaching himself blacksmithing so that he could make his own climbing equipment. His pitons which were already being used by his circle of friends gained some popularity within the greater climbing community. As a result, he started manufacturing pitons for sale and eventually he was able to support himself from the trunk of his car.
After returning from a placement in the draft he resumed manufacturing his equipment and finally released his first catalogue in 1964. This catalogue was nothing more than a sheet of paper with a list of products and prices but it was nevertheless a clear sign of progress.
Over the years, Chouinard discovered the negative impact that his rock climbing pitons were having on their natural playground. The “repeated hammering of hard steel pitons” into the same rock faces lead to serious disfiguration. Chouinard decided to phase out of the piton business and instead promote and supply for its alternative – aluminum chocks. It was at this time that Chouinard came up with the idea of producing good quality clothing. He initially relied on the durability of corduroy for pants and the practicality of the rugby top to get the clothing demand established. The company expanded the clothing line and decided that it was necessary to develop a new separate brand to sell clothing- Patagonia was born. The goal was to create clothing strong and durable enough to function successfully in those harsh Southern Andes conditions.
Patagonia has a well-defined philosophy in all areas of their business ranging from product design and production to management and the environment. Chouinard and his company focused much time and effort into positive environmental initiatives because Chouinard himself saw first-hand the extreme deterioration of the nature that he had so often enjoyed. Patagonia incorporated recycled materials into its products, reduced the amount of toxins released into the environment and was the first company to use recycled paper for their catalogue. These and the other values that are held by Chouinard and his company are a direct result of living life imbedded in the natural world and taking risks in adventurous sporting activities. Patagonia lives to defy conventional wisdom and lead by example with a different more responsible style of running a business.
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