Our Campus: Dave Greenfield is dressing up UBC

Some students may have noticed that the post office red and white have left the Student Union Building. In its place, a pop-up shop featuring several local brands has opened its doors. Dave Greenfield, Vancouver native and owner of street wear label Nomad Collective, has claimed a spot for himself.

A retail opportunity at UBC doesn’t come around very often, so when Greenfield and several other local designers heard the news that a room on the first floor of the SUB was available, they took full advantage of the situation. “The owner of Lucky Babe, one of the other brands in the store, contacted the campus and found the space, and I came on board with them. There are a couple other brands in the space, and we’re all Vancouver brands.” They will be setting up shop in the SUB until the end of March.

Greenfield’s brand, Nomad Collective, specialize in designing street wear and snowboards. However, there are options for everyone at this pop-up shop. Lucky Babe is known as a ringleader in the Vancouver leggings revolution and Lavish Tee is reputed for street-smart shirt designs. Pretty Girl Swag completes the boutique, bringing a collection of unique accessories.

All of these labels possess a distinctive West Coast aura, and Nomad Collective is perhaps the most Vancouver-esque of them all. The brand’s identity stems from Greenfield’s personal experience.

Born and raised in Langley, a township in the Greater Vancouver Area, Greenfield completed his post-secondary studies at Ferris State University, Michigan. Upon graduation, he entered the job market as a new automotive engineer, but was hard-pressed to find any job openings. “It was 2008, and the recession was really bad. So I ended up getting an internship with a construction company, and ended up with a job back in Vancouver.”

During his time as an intern, Greenfield came up with an idea to start his own brand, and unlike many others with similar ambitions, he turned his idea into reality. The inspiration for the name ‘Nomad Collective’ came from his adventures, which include a spending a season in Whistler and a 10 month backpacking trip across Europe. “Travel, adventure and snowboarding were some of the biggest influences for me,” Greenfield states. He created his label with a focus on these three things, and has stayed true to them since.

Like any other business owner, Greenfield has faith that his label will continue to pick up momentum. “Up to now, [the business’s growth] has been mainly online and through word of mouth, and we’ve recently started doing pop-up shops. The goal is to get into five different stores by the end of 2015.” Greenfield’s aspiration is to become a true fashion designer, selling his products at wholesale to retail shops around Vancouver.

Greenfield had these words of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs: “you have to be super passionate about what you’re doing; there are a lot of hurdles, long hours, and not much reward at the beginning. But as long as you’re passionate, and really love what you’re doing, things will keep moving forward.”