The story begins before our retail store opened, at a time when we didn’t have an outlet for items that were irregular, damaged or defective. They just sat in boxes. Like all clothing manufactures, there is a percentage of inventory that has some sort of imperfection, which would then normally become waste product. Sandy and Jim began talking about how to reduce this product waste. It’s because of this, that our double-up tees were born.
At this point, there was an emerging trend within the mens wear market, of wearing a short sleeve polo shirt over a long sleeve t-shirt. With Jim’s background in the children’s apparel market he had seen this type of shirt and it was very common. An inset sleeve sewn in, to have the appearance of a layered look. Sandy and Jim decided to try it out as a new line item. We then cut the sleeves off of the damaged and defective tees and sewed them into our short sleeve t-shirts. We did it and the response was unbelievably strong. There was really nobody doing it in our market place and what began as a way to utilize waste, turned into a signature item for us.
We continue to use our damaged and defective product when possible. We use the sleeves or we will cut up the t-shirts and sew them into new sleeves. However, because demand is so great we actually now have to manufacture the sleeve detail from scratch, along with using our irregular waste product. As we prepare for our spring 2013 line, we will be featuring a new item that will again achieve the layered look without the layers. This time it will be a plunging v-neck with an inset contrast color and we can’t wait to show you! Every garment tells a story and that is the story of our double-up tees.
Today we are sharing a video of Jim Martin explaining our use of recycled cotton. We use this type of cotton in our knit line and wanted to give you an idea of what that exactly means. Our knit items have a wonderful and luxurious feel to them and our large throws are perfect for those brisk fall nights that are right around the corner. We hope you enjoy the video!
Wikepedia states that an alley-oop in “basketball is an offensive play in which one player throws the ball near the basket to a teammate who jumps, catches the ball in mid air and immediately scores a basket, usually with a slam dunk. The alley-oop combines elements of teamwork, pinpoint passing, and timing.”
We recently caught an alley-oop from another USA made apparel company. A mere fifteen miles west of Green3, Ripon Athletic of Berlin, Wisconsin is “a custom manufacturer of jackets and uniforms for institutional team apparel.” We’ve teamed up with them and Uncommon Goods to offer a unique piece of clothing. Aptly named “the athletic skirt” you may just get the urge to play a quick game of b-ball while wearing it!
This new lot of skirts are sewn together using discontinued, excess and remnant athletic material from Ripon Athletic. To be more specific, some of the fabrics might be excess softball pant material or discontinued fabric from the Baltimore Ravens or the Montreal Canadians previous uniforms.
The athletic skirt isn’t available yet, but once fall is here you’ll be able to purchase it through Uncommon Goods. If you are interested in purchasing something today, with a similar design and story, you can buy this skirt now. It’s a bridesmaid “dress” you’ll wear again and again and again…for real!
Wouldn’t it be nice if Earth Day were every day? Always thinking about the planet first, and how our waste and lifestyle will affect our future. April 22nd marks its 42nd anniversary. Sustainability has come along way and hopefully the efforts will continue to grow worldwide. Do something good for the Earth today and everyday so that future generations can enjoy all of Earth’s amazing sights!
Great Horned Owl
The above photo was taken at sunrise on Lake Winnebago in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. One of my favorite photographs.
Canvas Hanging Pictures
Continuing with our store front stories I want to talk about this cool display that our art director, Jane put together. We put up that white wall divider to divide the space (how clever, right?) between our office space and our storefront. We wanted a way to hide our office space further by displaying something over them. We had some unused canvases on hand that were purchased a few years back from a garage sale, so our super creative team decided to use leftover denim and sweater material as well as a few of our t-shirts to brighten up the canvases. Jane stretched and stapled the materials over the canvas to achieve that look.Unfortunately the fabrics alone looked, well, lonely; but the t-shirts looked cool. So to remedy those lonely fabrics we opted to print out some pictures from our photo shoot and center them on the fabric. I think this idea could work for you at home too. Try using family photos or kids’ photos pinned over a piece of leftover fabric. Parents or grandparents would love a gift like that for Christmas!
Take a look at this photo we used for the wall:
These donkeys were present at our fall catalog photo shoot but weren’t too keen on being photographed. Our photographer tried to befriend these two asses with hay, carrots, whistling and even baby talk, for a close up. This was the only picture that actually turned out; at least they are both looking at the camera.
Can you see the zigzag thread framed around the donkeys? Jane printed the donkey pictures onto recycled card stock, cut and then sewed them back together for a handmade feel. I think the extra effort was worth it. Didn’t it turn out great? We would love to hear of any creative canvas projects you’ve done!
A big part of our company goal is to always be aware of things that can be restored or reused to make beautiful quality items. In fact, when we were brainstorming ideas about how to decorate our new storefront, we again put this idea to fruition. We always have a lot of scrap fabric on hand (who’d have thought?) and decided to cut some of it into strips and then wrap around balloons using paper mache.
Scrap Fabric Balloons
Thankfully during the summer we had a high school graduate interning with us. She loves being creative and spent a few days prepping these for display. Aren’t they cool? This display may change with the seasons since we are always looking at new ways to be creative. Here’s another similar idea:
You can make these, using yarn, balloons, and a half-glue half-water mixture. Dip the yarn into the mixture and wrap around the balloon. Ever tried this? These yarn balloons I found on Pinterest (originally from here). If you have yet to hear about this website check it out. There is so much inspiration on their pages. Maybe we’ll tackle the yarn balloons for spring. Have you done any fun projects using paper mache? Do you love Pinterest or does it send your mind into spirals?