Branded Now Open in Tempe with Arizona Art, Fashion, and Screen Printing
Branded, a new shop in Tempe, offers its space up to Arizona businesses looking to sell fashion and art items, like clothes, jewelry, accessories, photography, and other artworks.
We chatted with store owner Drew Reyner about where the idea to start such a business came from and how he wants to create a collaborative team -- and we got the lowdown on the grand opening for the shop on Saturday, March 29, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Courtesy of Branded/Drew Reyner
Next door to the retail space is a screen printing warehouse, where bands, businesses, and nonprofits can print clothing at a fraction of the price it would cost elsewhere, according to Renyer.
He says the idea for the shop was born during his efforts in a nonprofit he started, called Give1Too, which was formed to help a friend's daughter suffering from alopecia.
Reyner says that escalated into Give Back Printing, which is the screen printing side of the Branded retail shop, where anybody can come learn how to screen print under Reyner's instruction, and print their tees for much cheaper than it would cost them from other screen printing companies.
When Reyner started the Give1Too, most of his money earned was coming from T-shirt sales, and he was using local screen printers for all the Ts.
"I was curious how much it is to actually print these, compared to what I was paying," Reyner says. "I looked it up and was like: Gosh, we could be doing this ourselves. So I found a screen printing shop in Sacramento that was going out of business, flew out to Sacramento, loaded up a U-Haul, and drove back."
At that point, Reyner says he set up a little shop in an industrial warehouse not too far from the current Branded location, where he planned on printing solely for himself and the nonprofit. After deciding he needed to do something to help pay off the costs, he brought in a local company that was looking for a place to print and started teaching them to do their own printing.
Reyner says the man from that company ended up being there six days a week and that the screen printing lessons were a big help to him.
"So I was like: This is awesome. I wonder if I can teach people to do this, they can save money, entrepreneurs can start new clothing lines, and let's see if this will work," he says. "So we started seeing if people wanted to print for themselves, and it worked. They were saving money and learning a trade, so it was awesome. Then we started working with nonprofits, so they could save money and make more money for their charities."