Day after day our youth fades. We grow up and take on responsibility working jobs or careers that a large portion of us detest, all in attempt to “live life.” Somewhere along the way we leave behind our passions in pursuit of socially acceptable norms. For some of us it’s music and ideals, concrete beneath urethane, paint on walls or athletics. Regardless of the activity, it’s a sense of self and identity in a culture that thrives on mediocrity.
At its core, Still Proud Clothing is all about individual expression. It’s a “true till death” mentality aiming to empower the individual to represent their passion and way of life regardless of the status quo. Whatever it is that you have pride for, don’t just be about it, LIVE IT!
Still Proud Clothing 2012
The Man Behind The Curtain
Life is full of obstacles and new beginnings, we either learn from mistakes and take risks, or follow the same old beaten path. Thankfully, Still Proud Clothing is my new beginning. My name is Gavin; I solely run this company not to make a million or to sell meaningless crap. I’m just an individual taking a swing at the world to put out clothing that I feel many will appreciate.
Music is an integral part of my life and something I’ve been very involved with over the years (writing, playing in bands, and running a booking agency) so it was natural to find myself back in the game with a similar outlet, clothing.
Still Proud was an idea that laid dormant in my mind while working a corporate desk job in 2008. Amidst reports, deadlines, emails and late nights I’d often think about the gratification of doing something on my own, something that aligned more with my passion than my current “grown up responsibility.” But as we often do, I put it in my mental “one day when I have time” folder.
One Friday morning I showed up like any other day ready to plow through an unending sea of work only to learn that I as well as 20 others would be part of the company’s first wave of lay-offs, due to the economy. At 24 with a college degree and bills to pay, I was heartbroken as I’d never been let go from a job and now had to go back to the drawing board of life to figure out the next move. Aside from looking for more jobs I began to devote half of my day to the clothing company I’d always wanted to start but never had the time for. Where most people would sleep in and mosey on through the day, I would wake up early every morning just to get a head start on my new found project. With a deep breath and much conviction I took a chance, dropped a nice chunk of my savings and started the line officially in the summer of 2009.
When I first started SP I had the simple idea to put out designs with direct correspondence to the hardcore and hip-hop communities. I’d always appreciated the DIY nature/ sincerity of the hardcore scene but also the in your face street appeal of hip-hop and sought to represent that with my first release. I didn’t really think about this becoming anymore than catchy messages on tee shirts but after the first drop, I discovered a more genuine direction that I wanted the brand to encompass.
The songs we hear and live in these sub-genres are really (for the most part) anthems of overcoming life’s obstacles. They motivate, heal and inspire us to live life for ourselves and to not back down in the face of adversity. It’s this realization and my own positive upbringing that allowed me to define SP’s true purpose: to instill in each individual that this world is theirs for the taking and that limitation is only what we believe it to be. Hopefully this doesn’t sound like some bullshit, abstract explanation but it’s very true in what I’m aiming to accomplish.
With much oversees support and a solid foundation in the US, for only being in business since 09 I’d say we’re on the right path. This is truly clothing for the outcasts, go-getters, and hustlers of society not content with the status quo and irrespective of background.
I aim to keep each release somewhat limited (between 50-100 pieces per design) as people naturally enjoy what little have, so keep that in mind when perusing the store and also note that reprints are not likely! I have a lot of plans to experiment with better quality fabrics and other articles of clothing but in order to get there first and foremost I need your support.
If you appreciate what I’m doing, please purchase a shirt (or two) and spread the word to your friends as only through your backing can I bring you the best gear.
Thanks for listening!