Welcome to the Future. It’s 2010 and as someone who lived a decent portion of his life with the number 19 in front of the years I am pretty excited. Seeing the year 2000 and Y2K come and go was pretty cool but 2010 to me just sounds like the future, and we are lucky enough to live in it. The past year was hard for everyone, and I know really this is just another day and nothing tangible has changed since yesterday, but mentally a change as simple as the date can make a serious difference in your life. Remember how exciting it was just having HOPE when Obama took office? Sure that has worn off a bit by now, but now we can place our hopes in ourselves. We all got stronger, smarter, and tougher in the past year. We know more about what we want in life now than we possibly ever have, and now is the time to rebuild and take what we want. I noticed this holiday season that my best selling item was the Made in China t-shirt. I think that says a lot about what people are thinking, and I hope we take what we learned from the recession and recede back to basics. I plan on learning a few old school traits this year including sewing and farming. I never want to be too dependent on modern technology and I want to know the processes of everything in my life that I use and take for granted.
Take a Proletariat shirt for example. It starts with an experience. Whether it was something I saw on t.v., an injustice I experienced or one told to me from a friend, or just some standard why does it have to be this way, that gets the wheels turning. Then I talk about it with my wife Leslie and a few close friends and get their input. Then I put pen to paper and keep shopping it around to people to see what they think. Sometimes I will work on a graphic with my mother who has been a professional graphic designer for 30+ years if I can’t make the computer match my mind. Then I pass it on to my friend Peter who owns QRSTS in Somerville and he and Paul and Ryan and the other guys put their time and care into the item. Then the tee gets dropped off at the shop by Slade, and River or James gets right to work sewing the labels into the garment that were made by a family business in NYC. Then I put a price on it and the shirt is ready for a home. Then you buy the shirt and give it life. It might be the shirt you met your girlfriend in or the shirt you dumped her in. It might be a shirt you wear because you can’t stand the suburban monotony of people trying to fit in, or maybe you were just cold and needed something to keep you warm. All I know is through this process at least 25 people are connected and that’s alot of hands for 1 t-shirt for a relatively small brand. I hope in this new decade we can all realize that not only are we all in this life together but we all NEED one another and everyone’s role in our society is important.
2010 is going to be a huge year for Proletariat and That’s the Hookup. I am already starting to design the Spring line with all of this in mind and as always I appreciate you for inspiring me as well as supporting this unconventional brand/community. I hope that in the very near future we can go from about 90% made in the USA, to a full 100% American Made products. I think we all know how important it is to have JOBS and I think there is great pride in American manufacturing. I always feel awesome when I pick up a box of t-shirts because I know I helped make them. I know we are all wired differently, but for me personally, I need to see what I have accomplished at the end of the day. Numbers in my bank account just mean I can afford a roof over my head and I get to eat, but those numbers don’t give me any satisfaction compared to when someone comes in and brings a shirt to the counter and is like “This shirt is fucking awesome.” And if you haven’t seen the redesigned Proletariat website yet, please take a chance to bookmark it – because I will continue to put our products on the site first since our online community is growing so quickly. Joe and the boys and I have also been working hard trying to bring you more rich content for this blog, That’s The Hookup. We have a few contributors now from Boston and NYC, and we try to give you 5-7 new posts a day of stuff we find interesting. Thanks to our friend Bill, it is easily searchable and well laid out in a way only a professional could do it. And thanks again to all of you for making it easy to keep doing what we do.
peace in 2010,