Dive into design, product development, branding, and e-commerce as you work in a team to launch a clothing brand.
This is a project for 8 high school students to launch a clothing line. Start from your own designs, end with a live online shop. There's no better way to learn about launching a product than to do it yourself.
Participants will work with design guru Jawansa Hall (of Blackwater Branding) and maker extraorindaire Elise Spontarelli (of Vector Space) to turn their ideas into products. Both Jawansa and Elise have launched multiple businesses and are passionate about entrepreneurship and design. Within budget contraints, students will choose which products to bring to market, identify their audience, design and make their clothing items and accessories, photograph their products, and launch an online storefront within seven weeks. Sounds crazy, right? Let's do it.
Students will learn to safety and effectively use a variety of digital and manual tools. The nature of this project allows students to decide their techniques of choice, but some ideas include screen printing, sewing, embroidery, laser cutting and engraving, and vinyl heat press. Graphic design and business skills will be a significant aspect of this project as well, as students come up with their concept art, research their target audience, and build a cohesive brand.
This class meets Mondays and Thursdays from 6:00 - 8:30pm, starting February 15th and ending April 1st. This is approximately 35 hours of instruction and brand building.
This project is for students ages 14 to 19. The early registration fee is $200 before January 31st, and $230 afterwards. Students need to commit to missing no more than one class, unless caused by illness or extenuating circumstances. This is a collaborative project and absences are very disruptive.
Needs-based scholarships are available by application on the Scholarships tab. The application period closes February 1st and the applicants will be notified by February 7th.
Are we really going to sell these prodcuts?
Yes! This is not a pretend project, these items will be sold to the public, for real money. That's how entrepreneurship works ;)
What happens with the proceeds from product sales?
That depends. If students are motivated by money and want to put the proceeds towards future entrepreneurial ventures, we're open to that. If they want to throw a (socially distant and responsible) pizza party, that sounds fun too. Or, students may choose a worthy cause and donate the funds. We'll decide this as a group.
I have no design or product development experience but this sounds awesome. Can I still participate?
Absolutely. No experience is expected and there will be a range of roles for students to focus on based on interest.
What about COVID-19?
Face masks and frequent hand washing will be required during this program. Social distancing will be implemented as often as possible, but students will sometimes need to work closely in a shared space with shared tools. Tools will be cleaned prior to use by students, and the health of each student will be assessed regularly. With this small group (eight students) we will be able to quickly alert participants of any known COVID exposures and the program will be halted if such a situation arises. Parents and students will need to review and sign this COVID-19 Student Behavior Agreement prior to project participation.