7 Erie-owned clothing brands to watch in 2021
Erie is home to many creatives, with fashion designers being no exception. From streetwear to high-end couture, local designers have dressed celebrities like Lizzo. Below are 7 Erie brands to keep your eyes on for 2021.
Started in 2016 by Grant Kruszewski, KRU is a clothing company that specializes primarily in streetwear. Designs are derived from Kruszewski's fascination and inspiration of art. An upcoming pop-up is planned to take place at The 10/20 Collective for the release of the Spring 2021 collection, with the collection being available for purchase online, after the event. Kruszewski cites his friends as some of his biggest inspirations, naming Lorde Vice as one of his current ones.
Created by powerhouse entrepreneur Samantha Randall; an animal activist, model, marathon runner, and attorney; House Of Charlie Ryan has an edge. One of the few couture fashion brands based in Erie, HOCR was officially manifested in 2018. Randall states that "to express your true self through clothes you've designed, cookies you've baked, or food you've cooked all from you and your creative being is the greatest joy." She said that "I love self-expression and being who you are no matter what. Create the world that you want to be in" as her motivation.
Created by rappers and siblings Aaron Rennel and Kenny Ba$e, Major Coin has taken the Erie area by storm since their ascent in 2018. Their classic "Make it Stack" coin design can be spotted on the brand's apparel frequently around Erie. When asked about the inspiration behind Major Coin, co-owner Aaron Rennel says it was "To encourage people to live a lifestyle more conducive to their natural gifts and talents. We want people to know that you can be prosperous in pursuit of your passions. There's ups and downs with everything in life but when you're walking in your purpose, those dips and valleys of life are not only more manageable but they begin to have more meaning for one to glean insight out of/utilize to further that personal journey of self-exploration and actualization we are all on."
The brick and mortar location of Produce & Protect Studios can be found on West 26th Street; a recording studio can also be found on site. The brand's focus seems to be more minimalistic designs made with high-quality garments for a sleek, whilst slightly edgy, cultivation of streetwear. DePaul's latest drop for the brand featured a Merino Wool Beanie and a sleek, hand-sewn suede accented duffle bag.
Following the 2018 inception, Melancholy has quickly become one of Erie's leading streetwear brands. With each seasonal drop containing nothing but distinctive designs, locally made, and striving to become ever more sustainable; founder Gaby Reyes has kept us on our toes. The 21-year-old Erie native has noted they drew inspiration from personal experiences to create a clothing brand "rooted in promoting self-love, personal growth, and embracing mental illness." Melancholy can be found online and is known for their pop-ups around Erie.
Dotigan is striving to create a unique amalgamation of high-fashion and streetwear. Since 2017 Dotigan has produced a variety of items from loungewear to outerwear and accessories. From their Facebook page, "Dotigan is a brand of clothing carefully crafted with a strong, consistent vibe and vision for the passionate dresser. The devotion to design is represented and recognizable in each piece." Found at screen printing shop Deuce Two, the brand is accessible for in-person perusal as well as online browsing on their website.
Created by the talented and elusive Andre Jones, Rabbit 3 is nothing short of extraordinary. Jones's designs have been spotted on a variety of high-profile celebs including Lizzo, Young Dolph, Maliibu Miitch, as well as celebrity stylist Shelby Swain. Rabbit 3 will be available to shop at their pop-up on January 9th, from 3-8 PM at SHE Vintage. Among the collection's to-die-for releases are a mouth-watering pink stiletto, fittingly named "Malibu Barbie Pumps".