The Story of a Green 3 Catalog

Have you ever wondered why catalogs are made the way they are? Why some clothes are on people and some are just on a mannequin, or why some garments are laid flat? Today, behind the desk of Green 3 Apparel, we have answers just for you!

How long does it take to create a Green 3 catalog?

The creation of the catalogs can take months for planning, production and final touches. It starts with co-founders Sandy and Jim Martin thinking of big ideas from Green 3’s next season. They have a general idea of page count and categories, but not always what products will go on what pages.

Layout begins when there’s a better idea of how the catalog will come together. Templates are made and sent to Alex, our in-house graphic artist, who does proportion, spacing and sizing adjustments.

How do you decide which photos of people or mannequins to use?

When we create any garments for Green 3, we have a checklist in mind for our loyal customers:

1. Does it appeal to you?

2. Does it feel good?

3. Does it fit?

4. Can you afford it?

5. Where is it made?

With that in mind, we look for the best images that will help you see what needs to be seen, which are the graphics we design and the details of the garment. We plan our big ideas and decide which look is best for our fit and sizing. We also consider what products are being shown and the emotions. When we display our Halloween idea, we LOVE when our model, Jane, is having a blast, because we know that your consumers will love having fun, too.

How do you decide which order to place your ideas?

This upcoming catalog for our fall/holiday lines will be the first time we are using a full page for our big ideas. We are doing this to show our customers what we think are the most important trends for the upcoming season. We also consider which products can be adjacent to each other. For example, our catalog features our Halloween and Fall line right next to each other.

How many catalogs are printed?

This next season, we are printing 7,000! We give these to our sales representatives and customers, just like you!

I love Green 3 and I need it NOW for my store! Please give me a catalog!

Looking to get Green 3 for your retail stores? Our website not only features everything from the catalog online, but we also have a request form to get a catalog. We just need a little information from you! We can send it electronically or through mail- whichever is most convenient for you. Click here if you just HAVE to have Green 3!

Okay, I don’t own a store. Now what can I do?

Green 3, although more of a wholesale company, also offers retail products. Check out our website here, and don’t forget about our weekly sales!

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A Day in the Life of Alex

At Green 3, every garment has a story. The designs, the colors, the hand-drawn pictures on the garments have an even bigger story.

Green 3’s in-house artist, Alex, has been on our team since July 2013 after he graduated from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. He says the opportunity was by coincidence as his aunt used to work at Green 3 also as an in-house artist before they contacted Alex. He started part-time and was asked then to work full-time.

Alex working on spring 2016 designs in his office.

Alex working on spring 2016 designs in his office.

Today, we are honoring all the work he puts into the thoughts behind the garments by looking into a typical day for Alex.

Alex starts his day by booting up his design programs, such as Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator. He will log into his email, look for the next movie, science or video game podcast to listen in on, plug in his larger headphones that cover his ears, and get the ball rolling on the next big idea from Green 3.

Green 3’s founders Sandy and Jim Martin will tell Alex what kind of ideas will complete the spring, summer, fall or winter collections. After he gets an idea of what they’re looking for, he will hand-draw the designs using a pad that places the sketches straight onto the computer.

After designs are finalized, Alex will work with the Pantone color wheels to add in bright, beautiful and bold colors for our printed garments. With knit products, like our sweaters, hand warmers and scarves, Alex will work with color swatch books specifically for yarn.

Some days, Alex can finish designs within a few hours. When the designs are more detailed, like a repeating pattern for example, it can take most of the day, or about five to six hours.

As Alex works, he is taking the art work for knits and puts them into grids so the process is faster. Grids are needed with knit garments because the machines will use one grid per stitch to make the graphics accurate.

Cads, or mock shirts, are made up electronically and sent to Jim and Sandy, and Alex will “shelf” the artwork for a while. During this time, Sandy is planning the line and Alex will work on a different project until the art comes back.

When Sandy has the line planned out, Alex will collaborate with her on which colors will work best. He will send the artwork to Green 3’s print shops and knitter and they will send samples back to Green 3.

Although the design of the garments may only take Alex a day or two, he will spend more time working with the details of the graphic. He cooperates with the print shops so that they know the exact measurements to have the perfect fit and look. After he knows measurements, the graphic is printed and pinned onto the shirt for approval from Sandy. The final step is Alex sending the final measurement information to print shops and the knitter.

After the completion of the project, Alex gets started on the next great thing at Green 3! We never stop designing or working to create more fun and individual designs.

 

 

 

 

 

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Every Garment Tells a Story: Organic Valley Bandanas

At Green 3, we take pride in knowing every bit of garment down to the last bit of stitch has a story behind it.

Today, co-founder of Green 3, Jim Martin, is traveling to Hurley, Wis. from Oshkosh to deliver fabric that will be made into bandanas for Wisconsin’s Organic Valley Farms, located in La Farge, Wis. Those bandanas are made not only within the U.S., but in Wisconsin as well, which is a very large goal for us and Organic Valley.

Organic Valley is a company that is organic and farmer-owned since 1988. The company believed in sustainable and natural options for farming, and started growing organic vegetables. Eventually, the demand was large enough that they expanded their product lines to dairy.

The story of the bandana started when Organic Valley contacted us to make bandanas for them, which will then be given out. We take pride in helping and collaborating with other local businesses, so we said yes!

The fabric that needs to be cut came into the shop today, and we are sending it to a company in Hurley called Art Unlimited. Art Unlimited has workers who are highly skilled in apparel manufacturing and have been sewing for more than 25 years. Green 3 loves that the company produces goods within our home state.

The heart is Green 3 in Oshkosh. The upper star is Art Unlimited in Oshkosh, the middle star is Aspiro in Green Bay, and the lower star is Organic Valley in La Farge.

The heart is Green 3 in Oshkosh. The upper star is Art Unlimited in Oshkosh, the middle star is Aspiro in Green Bay, and the lower star is Organic Valley in La Farge.

Today, employees at Art Unlimited will be cutting rolls of fabric. In order to do so, they use a band saw that allows them to slash through the thickness of the cloth. The employees will take the rolls of cloth and unravel them the full length of 55 yards. The fabric will be stacked on top of each other as much as the saw will allow it. Then, a paper outline is placed on top so the employees know where to cut.

After the fabric is cut, it is brought back to Oshkosh for water-based ink printing.

After it’s done printing, the bandanas are sent to Aspiro in Green Bay, Wis. Aspiro is a truly inspirational company, who provides jobs, skill training, independence and pride to cognitive-disabled adults. Green 3 and Aspiro work together with different manufacturing projects. Later this week, employees at Aspiro will add the final touches to the organic cloth bandanas. They will sew around the edges to ensure the bandanas never fray.

After that, the finished bandanas will be delivered to Organic Valley!

What Green 3 absolutely adores about this project is how we are keeping the production within the state. Green 3, Scharpf’s, Art Unlimited, and Aspiro, all Wisconsin companies, are working together to keep apparel and home goods production here in the U.S.

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Behind the Scenes: Fall/Winter Preview

When green3 shoots for our catalogs, it’s not always just serious and professional.

Jane on the set of the green 3 Fall/Winter catalog shoot.

Jane on the set of the green 3 Fall/Winter catalog shoot.

Over the course of 5 days, green 3 had more than 2000 photos taken with tons of new garments for when the leaves start to change and snow begins to fall. We know we have a few months before that, seeing as it’s finally warming up a bit across Wisconsin, but here’s a glimpse behind the curtain into what we’re doing this year.

Jane trying on our paw-friendly clothing.

Jane trying on our paw-friendly clothing.

In order to get certain shots, the photographer must get the model to pose in a various amount of ways, or even get her to laugh a little, to get the photo that truly represents what green 3 is about: femininity, individuality, and fun!

Our big idea #1 is Holiday. What started as Jane trying to balance turned into…

Jane acting like herself to represent green3.

Jane representing the coziness of the Holidays.

Jane is wearing the printed scarf and matching skirt, with the holiday long-sleeve shirt.

Jane is wearing the printed scarf and matching skirt, with the holiday long-sleeve shirt.

For example, in the below shot, Jane was told to act like a vampire so that she could represent a woman who is mysterious and goth. She couldn’t help but laugh and have fun making silly faces toward the camera.

Fall/Winter Preview

Jane doubled over after asking to act like a vampire.

However, the end shot was phenomenal, and captures our big idea #3: Halloween.

Jane is sporting our Halloween idea, a layered skull shirt, accompanied with the skull scarf, hand warmers, and boot cuffs.

Jane is sporting our Halloween idea, a layered skull shirt, accompanied with the skull scarf, hand warmers, and boot cuffs.

Our #4 big idea is Fall– Jane needed to get some giggles out before she could deliver the true, Fall smile.

Behind the Scenes: Fall/Winter

Jane couldn’t hide her giggle during the Fall photo shoot.

Jane rocking the layered fox shirt with the printed skirt.

Jane rocking the layered fox shirt with the printed skirt.

We fully believe in everyone’s true self, which is why we are proud of the way our photo shoots are conducted.

We even included Ms. Belladonna in our photo shoots. Being an Italian beauty, she adores modeling. She does work for treats, pasta, or whatever happens to be cooking in your kitchen. More of Bella can be found on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Bella

Ms. Bella with Jim Martin, co-founder of green3 apparel.

We are launching new scarves, hand warmers, shirts, skirts and sweaters, all which are the same organic cotton and recycled or re-purposed materials. Stay tuned to read about where the inspiration comes from, the story behind each piece of cloth, and when these gems will be released!

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Throwback Thursday

It’s Throwback Thursday, and we’re going back in time to green 3’s signature garment that holds our company’s values true. Our first short-sleeved, water-based ink shirt was “Peaceful.”

TBT: Our first shirt!

This was the first shirt made and sold from our company. The organic t-shirt utilizes water-based ink, a process that allows the ink to penetrate the fibers. Water-based inks are thinner and harder to control, which is why a lot of garments don’t have them. Typical screen printing uses petroleum-based ink, which gives shirts the rubbery feel. It’s also something you can feel on the shirt if you run your hand on it and sometimes when stretched, can crack or break off. With water-based ink, shirts are smooth, soft, breathable, and won’t crack, peel, or fade.

All of green 3’s shirts start in Minnesota and migrate back to Oshkosh, Wisconsin, where the water-based inks are printed on. The original shirt is not on our shelves anymore, but there are plenty of other wonderful, water-based shirts to choose from.

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