The young men of the Dirty BackPack Krew all have one thing in common: style.
Together they have put together a clothing company that puts customer quality and experience before everything else.
Young Money: Tell me about yourselves (age, education, background)
Patrick Silverthorne: Age 24
Patrick is a savvy, ambitious, and daring CEO for Dirty Back Pack Krew. He has come along way from working as Production Assistant on music video shoots, to running his own clothing company. Patrick’s fashion sense was apparent at an early age when he would purchase expensive clothing with the money he had earned working at his after school job. He knew that he could find the clothes cheaper, but he made it a point to look stylish in expensive threads. This is one of his goals to allow people to purchase quality looking clothes for a reasonable cost. One would think that Patrick attended fashion design school, but he actually studied Media Arts/Business at New Jersey City University. Inspired by the fresh and unpretentious style of New York’s urban youth Patrick set out to launch his own clothing company in 2008
Christian Balbin: Age 19
Christian is a young, ambitious, and stylish young man and one of the founders of the Dirty Back Pack Krew clothing line. Growing up in Jersey City since the age of 5, he always had a taste for clothes that were out of the ordinary. Influences from older cousins living in New York inspired him to develop a style that was unique to him. He is a sophomore at New Jersey City University continuing to pursue his degree in Marketing and International Business. He is working and studying diligently while he makes every effort to make Dirty Back Pack Krew a successful company.
Leonard Williams: Age 23
Leonard Williams is a team player who is intelligent, motivated and believes any goal can be achieved with a little hard work. He is the third founder of Dirty Back Krew. 2008, Leonard received his BA degree for Business Administration from New Jersey City University. He was listed in Who’s Who Among American High School Students, as well as the honor of being listed in Who’s Who Among American Colleges and Universities two years in a row (2007-2008). He was a recipient of the NJ Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship award in 2007 and the first Corporate Scholarship Award Winner at NJCU for Business from Simplex Grinnell. Leonard currently is employed at Simplex Grinnell Fire and Security Safety as an Account Manager. Becoming a successful entrepreneur is one of his goals. Leonard feels that education was an important tool in his life, and has taken the time out to give back to his community by feeding the homeless and donating clothing. The public would view Lenny as a go-getter who enjoys different fashions.
YM: Do you all skateboard?
Yes, although we are not expert skateboarders, we do enjoy the sport and find it to be very entertaining. We find skateboarding to be a very active and fun sport.
YM: Obviously you are marketing to a group that you are familiar with, what types of marketing are you doing just for this group?
We will market to a group we are familiar with using a few different tools. For the skate board community, we will include skateboard vinyls and helmet vinyl’s to give the name of the line more recognition. These stickers could be placed under the skateboards which would help market the company in many ways. Word of mouth is a great tool. Many skateboarders already use stickers to cover up the bottom of their skateboard decks and we would hope that they would pass the word.. Another major tool is the use of online marketing. This tool is the most important because of its ability to upgrade a company from local recognition to world wide status. Currently we can speak to future customers on Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace. (Check us out: myspace.com/dbkclothing, twitter.com/dbk_clothing and youtube.com/dbkclothing)
YM: What is the hardest part about starting your own business?
The hardest part in starting your own business, especially one that is in the fashion industry, would be finding companies and people that have the same vision as you do. It is hard to find a person who can put your ideas into reality. Creating t-shirts is very much a trial and error process in order to get your product to be exactly the way you want it. This is one the hardest parts of creating this type of business.
YM: Can you tell me a concrete piece of advice (something solid like incorporate your business, pay your taxes, etc)
The first concrete piece of advice we can give is “Building relationships/Networking”. This is an important factor in any business you start even outside of fashion. You must know what resources and people to use in the business. Negativity is something you must stray away from when starting your business. Our lawyer stresses that “Patience and Timing” are very important. Sometimes you may feel pressured to rush things but moving slowly and precise is the best way in starting a business. You don’t want to miss any steps especially in the initial stages (i.e. trademark, LLC, website, business plan, etc) if not done correctly this can be vital or detrimental to your business in the long run. Last but not least is Marketing, a vital piece in any business. In order for the world to know that your product exists, you must tap into every resource in order to boost the buzz and hype of your product. Marketing strategies should be reviewed and studied if they are not already known.
YM: Do you design all of the t-shirts yourself?
We do not design all of the t-shirts ourselves, but we do put our input into every shirt that we create. We work with outside designers to create the designs of the t-shirts.
YM: How do you save on costs?
Our company lives by the motto: “Customer quality and experience outweighs any cost.” With that being said DBK will not cut any cost in production we expect the best quality for our customers. We must research our resources and get the best pricing.
To contact the Dirty BackPack Krew email firstname.lastname@example.org