Celebrating the Holidays Vancouver Style – Part 1

The magical holiday season is upon us once again.  That special time of year when you get together with friends and family for good times and good cheer.  Vancouver has so many different holiday venues that it may be difficult to fit them all into your already busy schedule.  As the premier drycleaners in Kitsilano, we would like to offer these can’t miss festive events that are sure to get you in the holiday spirit.

Vancouver Christmas Market

Although there are many different Christmas markets to choose from in Vancouver, the largest is the Vancouver Christmas Market.  This popular market is located at Jack Poole Plaza outside the Vancouver Convention Centre and runs from November 23 until December 24.  The Christmas Market is divided up into four zones to make it easier to find what you are looking for.

The zones are:

  • Christmas Tree Terrace – this zone is home to the information desk and first aid. Also located in this zone is the carousel and a giant Christmas tree that you can go inside.
  • Artisan Market – here you will find vendors selling a wide range of hand-crafted goods such as glasswork, distilled liquors and handmade chocolates.
  • Merchant Alley – the vendors in this section of the market offer imported, one-of-a-kind gifts such as beer steins or handmade soaps from Turkey.
  • Marktplaz Eats and Treats – this is your one-stop shop for all of your Christmas favourites as well as some more traditional and exotic Christmas food from around the world.

The Vancouver Christmas Market is a can’t miss event and a great place to get a head start on all of your holiday shopping.  For more information on the market, its hours and cost of admission, please visit:

https://vancouversbestplaces.com/events-calendar/festivals-and-events/vancouver-christmas-market/.

St. Paul Lights of Hope Celebration

The St. Paul Lights of Hope Celebration has been a Vancouver landmark since 1998.  This annual event is made possible by over 150 volunteers who set up over 100 000 lights and illuminated donor stars.  This celebration is a fundraiser for the hospital and last year raised over 3 million dollars.

Vancouver Santa Claus Parade

The Vancouver Santa Claus Parade is an annual event that attracts over 300,000 people and has over 2,500 participants.  Arrive early to get a great seat and ring in the holidays at this year’s Vancouver Santa Claus Parade.  For more information about the parade route and start time, please visit:

https://vancouversbestplaces.com/events-calendar/december/vancouver-santa-claus-parade/.

Festival of Lights at VanDusen Gardens

This popular attraction brings the VanDusen Botanical Gardens to life and is Vancouver’s longest running winter holiday attraction. With over 1 million lights spread over 15 hectares of garden, this light show is sure to entertain.  Make sure to carve some time out of your schedule for this amazing light show.  For more information, admission costs and some of the highlights of the light show, please visit:

https://vancouversbestplaces.com/top-attractions/vandusen-gardens/festival-of-lights/.

These are just a few of the can’t miss holiday attractions in Vancouver.  We offer a free pick-up and delivery service for all your cleaning needs, so if you can’t fit anything else into your busy schedule, let us help.  We would love to be a part of your holiday cheer.

Happy Holidays from West Boulevard Cleaners.

Green up your Fall

It is never too late to join the green movement.  By going green you can reduce your carbon footprint, reduce the amount of waste you create and believe it or not, maybe even save yourself a few dollars.  As Kitsilano’s premier eco-friendly dry cleaners, we would like to offer you the following ideas on how to go green this fall.

Conserve Energy

As the days get shorter and the nights get colder, you will probably end up using more energy to light and heat your home.  These are some ways to conserve or even reduce energy in the fall include:

  1. Turn off lights in a room when you are not using them.
  2. Consider switching your lights to more energy efficient lights such as compact fluorescent lights (CFLs). CFL’s use about 70% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. Incandescent means generating light from heat.  This is the way light bulbs have worked since they were invented by Thomas Alva Edison.
  3. Or even better than CFL’s, why not switch to LED light bulbs? They cost more than CFL’s but last longer.  If you run a single incandescent bulb 5 hours a day for two years, it will cost you around $32 (depending on your energy rates). Most of that money is spent on electricity. If you run a single LED bulb 5 hours a day for two years, it will cost you $12.
  4. Lower your thermostat or invest in a smart or programmable thermostat so that you are only heating certain rooms or using heat at certain times of the day.
  5. Use warm water instead of hot in your washing machine. Or even better, use cold water.  Lightly soiled items come just as clean in cold water.
  6. Hang dry the garments you don’t bring to us, perhaps on your shower curtain rod.

Use Less Water

Living in Vancouver, it may be hard to think about conserving water as all it does is rain in the fall and winter months, but reducing the amount of water you use can save you money in the long run and will reduce your impact on the environment.

  • Use shorter wash cycles on your washing machine, or invest in an eco-friendly washing machine.
  • Try to shorten your shower by even a minute. I’ve heard using a wash cloth is not only better for your skin, but if you put soap on your cloth instead of on your body you can spend less time in the shower.  You will not only conserve water, you will also save on your hot water bill.
  • Install aerators on your taps and a low flow shower head. Both will reduce your water consumption and may come with a tax rebate, saving you money.

Cut the Plastic

Cut back on your reliance with plastic.

  • Instead of plastic bags, use cloth tote bags for shopping.
  • Recycle excess plastic bags so that they don’t end up in a landfill or in our oceans.
  • Request paper bags when food shopping, as they are sometimes made with already recycled paper, and are easier to recycle.
  • Decline plastic covers if you can do without when purchasing clothes.

Save Fuel

One look at the cost of fuel in Vancouver will have you wondering how to conserve or get the most out of your next tank of gas.

One way is to look for companies that offer free pick-up and delivery services like we do.  This will not only save you time but also help you conserve fuel.  We are proud to offer a free pick-up and delivery service and our friendly and professional staff would love to be a part of your overall green initiative.

Take public transit to work and back if you can, or better yet, use a bicycle.

We are an eco-friendly cleaner that believes in the green movement.  This is the only planet we have.  Let’s do our best to keep it clean.  All our services are aimed at not only reducing our impact on the environment but also providing you with a quality eco-friendly cleaning service.

 

 

Getting Your Wardrobe Fall Ready

After another epic Vancouver summer, the beginnings of the fall season are in the air. Shorter days, colourful leaves and yes the infamous Vancouver rain are all signs that it is time to put away your shorts and break out that fall wardrobe. As the premier Kitsilano eco-friendly dry cleaners, here are our recommendations and picks for some must have Fall attire.

Classics

There are always those classic fall clothes that no matter what the season or the year, they never go out of style. Comfy and warm favourites such as sweaters or hoodies are sure winners on those chilly fall days.

If you live in Vancouver another must have for the fall season is a good rain jacket. As we get into the late stages of fall, you will really appreciate staying dry as you get out and enjoy the beautiful sites of the city in all their fall splendor.

Some of this years’ hot fall wardrobe choices include:

  • Vests that can act as a layer allowing you to dress for the ever changing fall temperatures.
  • Flared jeans that can accommodate some rain boots or warm weather boots.
  • Sweater dresses that give you the best of both worlds, allowing you to stay warm and comfortable while still being trendy.
  • Wide brimmed or fedora type hats that will keep you warm and keep the rain away. Try to match your hat colour to that of your lipstick.

Accessorize

What would any fall wardrobe be without accessories? The hottest accessory for Fall 2018 is the wrap. A wrap is the ultimate in versatility and layering. Maybe look for a mid-weight fringed pattern. This will be fashionable this fall.

Fringe seems to be all the rage this fall. It can transform any outfit and give it that extra flair. Regardless of whether you are thinking about boots, purses or vests, you can’t go wrong with fringe.

A good pair of boots is another essential fall item. This year’s hottest boot is a versatile over the knee boot that will balance any layered fall look.

Caring for your Fall Wardrobe

Many of your fall wardrobe items need to be properly maintained to keep them looking and feeling new. Delicate items such as fringe need to be professionally cleaned to prevent staining or damage. We offer eco-friendly cleaning for all your delicate fabrics. All of our cleaning methods are free of toxic chemicals and do not harm the environment. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will ensure that your fall wardrobe remains looking like new for many falls to come.

Our seasonal picks and recommendations will have you looking trendy and fashionable this fall. So make sure to get out and enjoy this special season in Vancouver. If you have any questions about our cleaning methods or would like to schedule a drop off, please contact us today.

Preserving and Cleaning Your Wedding Dress

The summer wedding season is now in full effect. The many spectacular backdrops in and around Vancouver make for wonderful wedding memories. After the big day, it is so important to get your wedding dress professionally cleaned so that it can be preserved and cherished.

As the premier eco-friendly professional cleaners in Vancouver, we would like to offer the following advice on how to preserve and clean your wedding dress.

Initial Inspection and Discussion

We know how much your wedding dress means to you and what it symbolizes. That is why we treat each of your customers as individuals and have an in-depth discussion to explain each cleaning step in detail. We also do a detailed inspection of each dress to make sure that any stained area or area of discoloration is given extra care.

Here’s the Deal:

By paying attention to detail, we cannot only provide full customer satisfaction, but we can also keep your wedding dress in pristine condition for generations to come.

The Eco-Friendly Difference

Our eco-friendly cleaning approach is guaranteed to leave no chemical residue on your dress. Instead of harmful chemicals such as PERC, we use a specially designed wet cleaning program that is gentle enough to ensure that even the most delicate of beading or lace will not be damaged. Our cleaning method is:

  • Environmentally friendly and fully biodegradable.
  • Chemical and solvent free.
  • Guaranteed to leave your clothes brighter, softer, fresher and free of all chemical smells.

Packaging and Boxing

Once your wedding dress has been thoroughly cleaned, we also ensure that it is properly packaged to keep it looking like new for years to come. We package all our wedding dresses in an acid-free paper to prevent yellowing and to help maintain your dress’s original colour.

Let Us Help You

We know how busy things can get after a wedding, with a honeymoon to plan and the beginning of a new chapter in life can leave little time for trivial matters such as picking up your wedding dress. This is why we offer a free pick-up and delivery service.

We suggest that you book an initial consultation with us to discuss the entire cleaning and preservation process and to identify any problem areas or stains that are on your wedding dress. We will provide you with a timeline and call you for a final inspection or let us drop of your freshly cleaned wedding dress at your front door. Regardless of your decision you will be pleased with the final product.

We know that your wedding dress is symbolic of perhaps the most important day of your life. We treat every wedding dress with the special care it deserves and will maintain and preserve the beauty and essence of your dress.

Our professional, friendly and knowledgeable staff can answer all your questions and ensure that your dress is attended to the way you want. Our eco-friendly cleaning approach will leave your dress looking pristine so that you can keep it as a treasured keepsake.

Vancouver – Canada’s Greenest City

We are lucky to call Vancouver home. This magnificent city boasts an unparalleled geographical backdrop ringed by mountains and is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean. Vancouver also attracts a multicultural population, which offers a host of international cuisines and unique cultural neighbourhoods. The city is also Canada’s greenest city and continues to make great strides in this area.

As the premier eco-friendly professional cleaners in Vancouver, we are proud to be a part of this green movement and would like to offer this brief overview as to why Vancouver’s green movement makes it the most sought after Canadian city to call home.

Vancouver’s Green Action Plan

The Greenest City Action Plan (GCAP) is Vancouver’s sustainability initiative to make the city the greenest city in the World by 2020. This plan focuses on 3 primary topics:

  • Reduction of carbon.
  • Reduce overall landfill waste with a goal of 0 waste.
  • Increase and diversify various ecosystems within the city.

Currently, the city feels that it has hit about 80% of the targets that they have set to achieve. Some of the highlights of the targets that have been met include:

  • Greenhouse gas emissions have been reduced by 7% within the city which is an 18% decrease since 2007 (www.vancouver.ca/greenvancouver).
  • Newly constructed buildings in the city use 50% less energy than those built in other parts of the province. (www.vancouver.ca/greenvancouver).
  • 76% of the waste created by the construction of new buildings and the demolition of old ones is recycled. This goal however is still a ways away from the 0 waste goal set by the city.

The city continues to win awards for its bold environmental initiatives and is currently seen as the third greenest city in the world behind Copenhagen and Stockholm.

The Vancouver Lifestyle

The Vancouver lifestyle goes hand in hand with this green initiative and approach. Many of the city’s residents enjoy nature’s playground that can be found throughout the city. From skiing to watersports and hiking, Vancouver has it all.

Arts and culture aficionados enjoy the countless festivals that have become an iconic part of Vancouver’s cultural scene and include:

  • Vancouver International Film Festival.
  • Vancouver International Jazz Festival.
  • Vancouver Folk Music Festival.

Vancouver is also home to internationally recognized cuisine and offers a wide selection of fresh, organic food choices that goes hand in hand with the green image of Vancouver. One trip to Granville Island will show you why Vancouver’s lifestyle is a sought after one.

Our Part

As part of the Vancouver business community as well as a resident of this beautiful city, we offer a quality, sustainable product that is environmentally friendly. Our eco-friendly professional cleaning services are an excellent alternative to traditional dry cleaning and will keep all your clothes looking like new and free of dangerous chemicals and solvents. So, the next time you are looking for a friendly, professional cleaning service drop into either our Kerrisdale or Kitsilano locations, and be a part of Vancouver’s green future. I hope to see you soon.

Khatsalano Festival 2018

Kitsilano is one of the most sought after neighbourhoods in Vancouver. Part of the draw is that it is trendy and offers a large variety of shops, restaurants, services and events. One of the most popular events in the neighbourhood is Khatsalano, Vancouver’s largest free music and arts festival. As the premier eco -friendly professional cleaners in Kitsilano, we would like to offer you a brief overview of this popular event and its history.

About Khatsalano

Khatsalano is Vancouver’s largest free music and arts festival and the place to be this July. This multi- stage event is headlined by more than 50 of Vancouver’s top musical performers as well as a host of local artisans and street performers. Khatsalano 2018 is a 10 block affair that spans from Burrard Street to MacDonald Street.

In addition to live entertainment, Khatsalano 2018 boasts a wide variety of food options, bustling patios, special activities and even a licensed beer garden. Khatsalano is a family friendly event and is a great way to spend a wonderful day in the city. Make sure to circle your calendar for July 7 and enjoy all that Khastalano 2018 has to offer.

A Brief History of the Festival

Khatsalano was started in 2011 and is enjoying its 7th year. The original festival was organized with Woodstock in mind and was tied to the Woodstock’s 40th anniversary.

Khatsalano’s name pays tribute to the First Nation’s that inhabited the area for over 1000 years and more specifically to Chief August Jack Khatsalano who was a Squamish medicine man that was instrumental in recording First Nation history and culture.

The festival’s main focus is to convey and preserve the true essence of West 4th Avenue – a laid back yet creative atmosphere that continues to offer a free-spirited lifestyle.

Highlights and Headliners

Every year the headliners and various musical attractions grow. This year the main musical headliners include:

  • Bif Naked – Has released over 10 albums and has enjoyed international success as well as a gold and platinum selling record. Her distinct sound and advocacy has allowed Bif to enjoy a wide range of success and is a must see at the festival.
  • Frazey Ford – If you like soul music, then Frazey Ford is the headliner you will want to see. Make sure to take in the passion and unique sound that Frazey brings to the stage.
  • Slow – One of the most influential punk bands in Canada, Slow brings a brand of rock n roll to the stage that is infectious to say the least. Come see the band that brought Expo 86 to its knees and is considered a Canadian icon.
  • Malcolm Jack – A folk artist of cosmic proportions, Malcolm Jack brings a one of a kind sound to his storytelling and lyrics. Make sure to see Malcolm Jack and hear music from his upcoming album at Khatsalano 2018.

This is just a small selection of some of the bigger stages at the festival. You will want to look your best for this exciting event so make sure to bring your festival clothes in for an eco-friendly professional cleaning. We are proud to be a part of the Kitsilano neighbourhood and all that it embodies and would love to help you look your best for Khatsalano 2018.

Cut Down on Fashion Waste: Alterations

Every year, millions of garments are discarded in our landfills. Unfortunately, many of these garments are far from worn out, but in a consumer society, many of us see clothes as disposable. As Vancouver’s premier eco-friendly professional cleaners, we would like to offer you a different approach for your garments; an approach that your wallet and our planet will thank you for – alterations and repairs.

Quality Over Quantity

Yes, fashions come and go, but classics are forever. When it comes to choosing your clothes, it may be a better long-term investment to choose quality over quantity, especially when it comes to classics such as white dress shirts, sports jackets or black cocktail dresses. In our opinion, quality clothing lasts longer, fits better and has straighter seams. Instead of replacing classics year after year, consider shopping for a superior cut.
Remember:
You can always make alterations to a quality classic so that it fits you the way you want. This is a far more economical and eco-friendly approach to constantly replacing your clothes. Feel free to bring in your favourite garment and see the difference a custom fit and custom alteration can do for you.

Repair Instead of Replace

Unfortunately even the best quality clothes can get damaged. Instead of throwing out your garments, consider repairing them. Most clothes can be mended and seams can be resewn. Mending can breathe new life into old garments, but it can also add a new flair to your clothing by adding a customizable approach to your clothes.
Easy fixes that should be mended or repaired include:

  • Missing buttons off your favourite dress shirt or blouse.
  • A run in your merino wool sweater.
  • A split seam or an unraveling seam.

You do not need to learn to sew or mend your clothes to keep them in top shape. We offer unparalleled mending and repair services that are guaranteed to add life to any damaged garment.

Go Green

Repairing and altering your clothes is part of a larger movement. Living in one of the most spectacular places on earth, it is easy to see why an eco-friendlier lifestyle is desirable and something to strive for. As part of the business community for over 19 years, we couldn’t agree more. We provide an eco-friendly cleaning service that will extend the length of your clothing and keep it looking new and out of the landfill for years to come.
Vancouver is a busy city and time is an important commodity. To free up your precious time and accommodate your schedule, we are proud to offer a free pick-up and delivery service for your cleaning, repair and alteration needs. Contact us today and see how you can take advantage of this service or bring in your damaged clothes that need custom altering. We look forward to seeing you soon.

3 Ways to Make Your Wedding Greener

Everyone knows that spring is the beginning of another wedding season. The gorgeous cherry blossoms, the stunning backdrop of the mountains and the spectacular ocean make Vancouver the perfect place to tie the knot. As the premier eco-friendly professional cleaners in Vancouver we would like to offer these tips on how you can make your wedding an eco-friendly event and still throw the party of a lifetime.

  1. Choose a Sustainable Venue and Menu
  2. One of the best ways you can ensure a greener wedding is by choosing a venue that aligns with your values. Outdoor venues are wonderful places for a wedding because there are very few resources required. No matter where you decide to get married, try to incorporate as many eco-friendly elements as possible.

    Another place where you can make a sustainable choice is in your food menu. This is especially true if you will be serving seafood or fish. Take the time to see what products are on the ocean wise menu and talk to your caterer or the venue to see what environmental practices they employ.

  3. Go Vintage
  4. Vintage wedding dresses are quickly gaining popularity in the wedding scene and can provide quite a statement. Perhaps you are thinking about wearing a dress that is a family heirloom or you want to make a statement and not buy new.

    Regardless of your reasons, if you do decide on a vintage wedding dress, let us ensure that it is clean and ready for the big day. Our eco-friendly cleaning services are in line with the sustainable wedding choices and we will treat this precious garment with the special care that it deserves. Bring it in and talk with one of our cleaning professionals in person.

  5. Support Eco-Friendly Businesses
  6. Any wedding is a big event with many moving parts. From caterers to photographers to calligraphers, there are a lot of businesses that you will be dealing with as the big day draws nearer. Here is your opportunity to find businesses that reflect your values and offer sustainable choices or products. Some green ideas include:

    • Get all of your wedding invitations printed on recycled paper.
    • Make sure that your wedding favours are sustainable such as free trade tea, coffee or chocolate.
    • Ensure that all of your gifts on your registry are sourced from sustainable eco-friendly companies.

In 2018, the sustainable business choices are endless.

Let Us Help

At West Boulevard Cleaners, we also place an importance on eco-friendly choices and fully understand and support sustainable lifestyle choices. We understand how busy and involved you will be in your wedding decisions. We will do our very best to help your big day be a highlight in your life.

Stop by today with your dress, and see how our eco-friendly cleaning services can get your wedding dress ready for the big day and keep this treasured keepsake pristine for years to come.

Tips for Keeping Those Precious Favourites Gleaming Like New

With the New Year fast approaching and the holiday season in full swing, I am sure that you are beginning to shift your focus to 2018. The New Year offers an exciting new set of possibilities and the chance to start fresh with a new set of resolutions. Regardless of your resolutions, a clean and well taken care of wardrobe will only help accent the new you.

Read Those Tags

Every item in your closet has its own set of washing instructions. Make sure to look at the label on the inside of each garment and follow those instructions. By following these instructions, you will ensure that your clothes remain looking new for years to come.
Certain clothes are too delicate for a wash cycle and thus should be taken to the dry cleaner. We recommend that you bring those clothes to us and let us care for them properly. We are an ecofriendly dry cleaner that offers a free pick-up and delivery service and would love to help you with all your dry-cleaning needs.

Clean Out Your Closet

Cleaning out your closet is another way to positively transition into the New Year. A decluttered closet not only looks better, it is also an important way to keep your clothes in excellent condition. A crowded closet not only wrinkles clothes, overcrowding also wears down sensitive fibres and fabrics. Make sure to create space so that each individual garment can hang free.

Hang, Fold or Store

It is a good idea to take care of your clothes once they have been cleaned. Make sure to hang or fold your clothes immediately after they have dried, to ensure a wrinkle free garment.
Here are some tips for proper garment care:

  • Always fold clothes along the seams to avoid unwanted creases and to maintain the garment’s shape.
  • Always clean seasonal wear before storing it. This will ensure that when you pull these clothes out to use them they are clean and free from bugs, scents and stains.
  • Invest in a drying rack or clothesline to hang clothes to dry. Avoiding the dryer will give your clothes a longer lifespan and will prevent any unwanted shrinking.

A quality set of hangers is a great investment if you want to keep your clothes looking new for years to come. Wire and plastic hangers can stretch out your clothes over time, which will affect the shape of that particular garment. Instead, invest in a hanger with push arms or wooden hangers that will keep the shape of your clothes.

Do the Necessary Repairs

Just because a piece of clothing is missing a button or has a missing stitch, does not mean that it is junk. Rather a quick fix can breathe new life into any garment in need of repair. We have an excellent seamstress on site that can help you with any of your alteration or repair needs.

By following these few simple tips, you should be able to keep your wardrobe looking clean and new for years to come. If you have any questions about garment care, please feel free to contact us today. We look forward to working with you.

Tips for Caring for your Holiday Attire

Can you believe it? Holidays are just around the corner. It seems like yesterday that we were out enjoying the warmth of summer and now the holiday season is only a few weeks away. This means endless parties and entertaining and all the excitement that the season brings with it.

To get the most out of your Holidays season, we at West Boulevard Cleaners would like to offer you the following tips on how to keep your holiday attire jolly and looking new.

Be Prepared

Chances are you haven’t even looked at or thought about your regular holiday attire since last year’s festivities. It would probably be a good idea to get those clothes out of storage and see how they look and even more importantly, how they fit. You may need to run an iron over them or give them a quick wash to get them ready for the upcoming holidays.

Keep it Stain Free

In between family and friends, work, church and clubs you might be part of, chances are that you will attend many different holiday parties over the next month. Which makes it even more important to keep your party clothes stain free. The last thing you want to be dealing with is to be out shopping for a new dress because a stain ruined the last one.

Remember:
The holidays are meant to be enjoyed, not to add a new level of stress to your life by tracking down replacement clothes at the last minute.

Leave it to the Experts

If you are feeling overwhelmed or just do not want to risk the chance of the stain setting and ruining that garment, bring your holiday attire to us. We are an eco-friendly dry cleaner that specialize in stain removal and can offer you a wide range of dry cleaning services. We would love to be a part of your stain free exciting holiday season.

Use Santa’s Little Helpers

We also know how busy the holiday season is and how a simple stain can shift the entire focus of your day. Because everyone is short of time around the holidays we offer a free pick-up and delivery service. Let us take care of all of the details, so you can focus more on the festivities and less on that red wine stain that you got at last night’s Christmas party.

Happy Holidays from West Boulevard Cleaners!