Business administration senior Kaija Clinton can’t wait until graduation to start her career. Her summer plans include launching her own outerwear fashion line called “Fuck With Myself.” The line’s recycled jean jackets promote diversity and individuality with screen printed original phrases across the back. Through on-campus resources like the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship’s (CIE) Hatchery, Clinton developed a unique line for anyone wanting to stand out.
Clinton’s bold name choice came after listening to a Banks song by the same name. After securing the domain name, which Clinton was ecstatic had not already been taken, she had a name for her brand.
“There are so many things competing for our attention,” Clinton said. “I needed a name that could quickly get the point across and that is memorable.”
The brand trifecta
There are three elements to Clinton’s line. The first is the brand’s message. Clinton said the brand is meant to encourage people to love themselves and “do their own thing.”
“The main goal behind the brand is to promote individuality, freedom of thought and freedom of expression,” she said.
Clinton wants her pieces to provoke thought for the people wearing them and the people viewing them. The messages on the backs of the jackets are meant to get people to think for themselves. The design Clinton wears has “A nation of sheep, ruled by wolves, owned by pigs” printed on the back.
The second element of the line is promoting the arts within communities.
“One of the ways we can solve people not thinking for themselves is through arts and through creativity,” Clinton said.
She hopes to collaborate with other artists in her designs and encourage others to do the same in their lives. Clinton said she hopes to create a community among the people who wear her clothes.
“Just because you fuck with yourself doesn’t mean you don’t fuck with anyone else,” Clinton said.
For the third element, she said she also wants to make “Fuck With Myself” a sustainable, eco-friendly line. Clothing industries are major contributors to pollution, according to PBS and Greenpeace research. Clinton wants to counteract this problem by making her products solely out of recycled jean jackets.
“As a brand coming into the fashion world, I don’t want to be a contributor in the demise of fast fashion,” she said.
Handmade by her
Ethical business practices don’t only add to her ecologically friendly mission, but to the unique nature of each article of clothing. No two articles in Clinton’s line are the same.
“Me and you could be wearing the same jacket and it has the same message on the back and it has ten buttons and two pockets but it looks different,” Clinton said. “Each piece itself is its own entity.”
Every jacket is handmade by Clinton and will be available for purchase on her website, www.fuckwithmyself.com, once the line has officially launched. For now, the website provides details for joining the company’s mailing list to get updates about the brand. Clinton said she hopes to launch the line this summer.
Born in the Hatchery
With a team of friends and CIE, Clinton developed “Fuck With Myself” through the Hatchery, an on-campus program taking entrepreneurship ideas and helping build them into businesses.
“The Hatchery allows students who want to create a start-up to concentrate on that process before they graduate,” CIE Communications Manager Candice Conti said.
For many students, the Hatchery is the first step toward starting a business. Through workshops, mentorships and other events, students are given the opportunity of a hands-on experience creating and launching their own company.
“The Hatchery is a great starting point; it is where you realize your farfetched idea might be something,” Daynes said.
Clinton’s designs have already been noticed; she said she is often stopped on the street when wearing her jacket. People want to know where she got it and she’s delighted to share that it’s from her own line.
Clinton aims to market to 18-to 35-year-olds, pricing her jackets at about $100.