Homegrown Business: Wade Hopwo of Dirt Squirrel

Dirt Squirrel is a premium-casual apparel company that specializes in comfortable underwear. We spoke with Co-Founder Wade Hopwo to learn more about what they do.

Dirt Squirrel

What is your business called and what does it do?

Our company is called Dirt Squirrel – a premium-casual apparel company that specializes in comfortable underwear, clothing that makes a statement and accessories that will add to your main character energy.

What made you want to do this work?

We started our company as a final project in our last year of university. We understood that we were entering adulthood that would require multiple income streams in order to live comfortably, within our means and beyond (everyone deserves to treat themselves). That’s when we decided to turn our final university project into an opportunity to do the groundwork and create the foundation for a new, apparel company that we could take to the bank once all was said and done. At that time, we had an affinity for underwear, crippling student debt and were in a position to take some risks in starting our own business. We took it as a fun, learning experience that continued to snowball into a fully realized company.

What problem did you want to solve with the business?

To be honest, at the time, I was dating the co-founder of the company and he had horribly unattractive underwear, so that was, first and foremost, the issue that needed to be resolved with this business.

Who are your clientele/demographics?

We started as a men’s underwear company, so our main demographic is gay men. However, as we have grown, we have introduced unisex apparel and accessories. We have also recently introduced pouchless underwear and bras to continue expanding our clientele and product selection.

How does your business make money? How does it work?

Customers can head over to our website, and shop through an assortment of eclectic underwear, incredibly comfortable apparel and vivacious hand fans that they can add to their personalized shopping carts, pay for and have shipped to themselves. We also wholesale our products to other retailers globally, so if you have a store in mind you think our products would do well in, let us or the store owners know! Similarly, if you’re a retailer curious about carrying Dirt Squirrel in your shop, we encourage you to message us for more details regarding wholesale pricing and more through the wholesale platform, Faire or by reaching out through email: info@dirtsquirrel.co

Where in the city can we find your profession?

We do not currently have our own storefront but are available online.

What is the best question a prospective customer could ask a member of your profession when comparing services? Give the answer as well.

People usually ask, “What sets your underwear apart” or will ask how it compares to a brand that they already know and love. Admittedly, this question is rather annoying to answer, as it’s all super subjective to the individual. We’ve spent a considerable amount
of time perfecting the cut of our underwear to ensure the most comfortable wear and have chosen fabrics that provide comfort and longevity. Underwear should be something you have fun with and turn over regularly, so we believe there’s plenty of room in an underwear drawer for multiple brands and styles.

Dirt Squirrel

What is the best part about what you do? What is the worst part?

We sell at a lot of events and festivals in North America, the UK and beyond, so the best part has been the business affording us the opportunity to travel to major cities for various events that we otherwise would likely not have attended. The worst part, hands down, is counting inventory.

What is your favourite joke about your own profession?


Where can we follow you?

We’re on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and TikTok

PAY IT FORWARD: What is another local business that you love?

As mentioned before, we believe there is plenty of room in an underwear drawer for taking risks mixing things up, having some fun and collecting different brands. There is another local, Vancouver-based, daring and boundary-pushing designer named, Peter Zuk who everyone should check out. He has made quite the splash since the inception of his business and is a wonderful person.



About Demian Vernieri 519 Articles
Demian is an Argentinian retired musician, avid gamer and editor for the Montréal Guardian, Toronto Guardian, Calgary Guardian and Vancouver Guardian websites.