Realizing Her Dream

Story by Stephanie Young and L. J. Burke

How Anu Raina Found Her Artistic Side at Sheridan

The Blank Canvas Coat

Anu Raina is a brand with a store located in Oakville, Ontario. Focusing primarily on women’s clothing, Anu Raina offers a variety of unique styles. The Blank Canvas Coat, which can hold penned messages from family and friends, or the Toronto Subway Scarf, which shows a map of the Toronto subway system printed on the finest silk are just a couple of head-turning pieces Anu Raina offers. 

Growing up in Kashmir, a troubled part of India, Anu Raina never saw “fashion”. There was no such thing. 

“There was nothing called fashion. I didn’t know, but I was always very creative, and I didn’t know how to go about it. I didn’t have an art background at all. So, I realized that fashion was very creative. That’s how I decided to get into fashion. I had no clue that I had artistic talents as well, which I found out I had at Sheridan actually,” Anu says. 

After falling in love with Sheridan’s art program and graduating in 2010, Anu went on to combine her knowledge and passion with art to create her brand, Anu Raina. 

I discovered the artistic side of myself at Sheridan.” 

When Anu came to Canada, she fell in love with the hidden beauty of Toronto, that many people seem to look over. 

“As an immigrant, I saw Toronto differently with different eyes, as does every immigrant. Everyone complains about the traffic or the broken roads…Toronto is so beautiful… The city embraces everyone. Everyone finds love and home and friends here,” Anu says. 

Anu Raina offers a small selection of menswear but hopes to offer a wider range of menswear in the future someday. Anu Raina is still a new brand and opened in the midst of a pandemic, but Anu hopes to one day branch into menswear. 

Anu Raina 2014 Toronto Fashion Week

“Honestly, I don’t plan next big steps, I just take one step at a time. It was a dream I was selling at one-of-a-kind shows. But since all the shows got canceled for the last three years, I thought this is the time to realize my dream. I thought, I should have my own place… My biggest dream ever is to get a space where I can have everything under one roof. Where I can bring in artists, craftspeople and really push Canadian craft. Take it forward to another level where people know there is craft in Canada and it’s ‘A class’.” 

You can check out Anu Raina’s store at 174D Lakeshore Rd E, Oakville, ON or visit her website at