Teamwork is the best way to describe how Roots products are designed. Itís a highly collaborative process that draws on the talents, tastes and experience of various individuals who have a keen understanding of the essence of Roots style. Inspired by the great Canadian outdoors, in particular Ontarioís fabled Algonquin Park where Roots was conceived, the designers make sure all products are true to the heritage and core values of Roots.

Based at the Head Office in Toronto, the team works on preliminary designs nearly a year before the items will hit the stores. The designers stay up-to-date through travel, research, staying tuned to the latest cultural and fashion developments, consulting with retail staff and customers, and working closely with Roots Co-Founders Don Green and Michael Budman. They check out new fabrics and manufacturing processes, always exploring ways to make more and more Roots products eco-friendlier. As part of the process, the designers also involve the technical specialists who help with the specs and getting samples made from scratch.

Nothing receives the green light to be manufactured until Michael and Don have made sure each product looks and feels right. With their keen attention to detail and instinctive sense of style, they inspect every sample, making suggestions. They also like to subject each item to the Ďwear testí, asking people — from other employees to family members and friends — to try something on and to give their reactions. Ultimately, if Michael and Don donít like something and donít feel itís consistent with the quality and integrity of Roots, it's sent back to the drawing board.

Based on this input, the co-founders work with the designers to fine-tune and further enhance the prototypes and samples. If needed, they make changes to pockets, buttons, the cut, the drawstrings, the embellishment, the graphics Ė no detail is too small for scrutiny and improvement. Itís all done with the aim of designing and making winning products deserving of the Roots name.