Nelson welcomes Zinnia Textiles — a shop honouring makers and materials

Owner Jen Barnes is a long-time Nelson resident who studied textile design at Kootenay School of the Arts.

A picture of the window of Zinnia Textiles.

A new storefront in Nelson, Zinnia Textiles, specializes in beautifully curated clothing and artisan goods. — Photo courtesy Kootenay Business

A graceful new store has appeared on Baker Street among Nelson’s heritage buildings and it recently celebrated its grand opening at the end of May. Located one block from the Kootenay Co-op at 659 Baker St., Zinnia Textiles offers a beautifully-curated selection of clothing and artisan goods from over 30 companies and artists. The chosen items are a lovely mix of locally and Canadian-made goods as well as items made using traditional, ethical techniques from other countries.

Owner Jen Barnes is a long-time Nelson resident who studied textile design at Kootenay School of the Arts. She has worked with natural fibres and ethical products for over two decades and now employs three other artists, textile enthusiasts and mothers to help keep the store open six days a week from Monday to Saturday, 10am to 6pm.

“It is an honour to bring such amazing designs and well-crafted products to Nelson,” Barnes says. “Kootenay residents and visitors are a discerning bunch. We want things that are made ethically, with quality materials, and that look beautiful when we wear them.”

A few of the lines available at Zinnia include the internationally renowned Nomads Hempwear, based in the Slocan Valley, Smoking Lily from Victoria and Maiwa Handprints from Vancouver. “You can expect to see more beautiful dresses around Nelson this summer,” Barnes continues, “because locals are asking to see even more brands to help support ethically-made fashion.”

Textiles is the theme of the store but Barnes has also carefully chosen items made from other materials such as pottery bowls, mugs and tumblers from two Nelson artists and locally and fairly made jewellery

The name Zinnia pays homage to Barnes’s grandfather, Richard Morriss, who was a printer of fine books and a great supporter of arts and craftsmanship in Victoria, BC. Zinnias were his favourite flower and they filled his garden beds every year.

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