We’ve hit the one year mark! Hip hip hooray!
The past 365 days or so have been the most crazy, hectic, trying and exciting, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.
There were times where we could have just stood up, walked away and never looked back. There were night’s we’d sit down to play around with new designs when suddenly we’d look up and see the clock hit 2:00 AM. Other late night endeavours included mixing new ink colours and testing them. Or making up new screens – waiting patiently for them to cure, or the light to set the emulsion. The joy of spraying out said screens in the local car wash in sub-zero temps. Weeks spent solely researching Canadian-made and American-made products to print on. Finding something ethically-conscious that was produced near-by was a nightmare.
Thus are the challenges of starting a new local business while still having to work a full time job to pay the bills!
It definitely wasn’t all headaches, though. We’ve learned a lot. On day 1 we started out by pushing ink through a screen that had vinyl on it instead of emulsion just to get a feel for it – we still have those first shirts in our closets. About a month in we really started to dig our teeth into things. We bought new screens and emulsion and threw some new designs on there. We were mixing inks to get custom colour fades. We were playing around with two colour prints (getting them to line up was a nightmare until we learned how to use registration marks properly a few weeks later).
One of my favourite moments was receiving an amazing review from a long-standing customer of ours: “Love your product. Buying local is the only way to go and supporting great people like yourselves, it feels more than just buying great clothing. Congrats so far in your journey and I hope to see more NTRL CLCTV being worn in this awesome community!”
Knowing that people appreciate all the work we are doing really makes the whole thing worth it. All those late nights, the arguments and all the high-fives and triumphs – so worth it to hear that someone is loving our local and ethical approach to clothing!
So here’s the biggest thanks. The thanks to you guys. The biggest cliché ever (but also the most true) – we would be nothing with out you! We can’t wait to see what the next 365 days hold and we hope you’ll join us for the ride!