Who is? Recreator is a lifestyle apparel brand, all started with four young guys living in a single loft bordering LA’s fashion district with a vision to create art & design with use of hemp textiles and artists co-operative. With use of hemp as the canvas, we design unique art, we print on textiles and figure out practical ways to bring awareness and creativity to our lives and others. We left Indianapolis in July to launch Recreator and legalize hemp farming. Recreator localizes production to some of the most trusted hands in the Los Angeles fashion industry: specialty hemp importers, the premier dye house and a cut & sew manufacturer with a touch for organic textiles. The Recreator team prints and finishes all wares at its downtown basecamp. These graphic artists have pledged their skills to mold Recreator into a creative co-op. Endless curating and collaborations will distinguish not only our artists, but our hemp as a proper canvas. And let it be known, these hands guide our exploration of symbol and style. Meet the boyz that started the Recreator apparel brand: Director of Operations – Matt McClain, Creative Director – Danny Preslar, Director of Sales – Tyler Purdue, Director of Public Relations – Justin Petty, Graphic Artists – Garrett Jett & Pieter van Tongeren
And what is your business with hemp? On its surface, Recreator is an apparel brand specializing in hemp. Each garment is dyed, cut and sewn, and finished by hand in Los Angeles. All printing is done by the Recreator team using water-based, non-toxic inks.
What began as friends paraphrasing talking points from Jack Herer’s The Emperor Wears No Clothes became a quest to bring superior hemp goods to market. Launching out with graphic T-shirts lays the foundation for our visual campaign to legalize American hemp farming. Our outlying goal is that all Recreator hemp fabrics be grown and milled stateside.
Do you have other businesses?
This is my first, so we’re learning to crawl first. The advocacy, print shop and brand keep us crawling, a lot.
What is your personal credo for this precious life?
As this company relates to my life, it started with a deep desire to chase Jack Herer’s vision of a hemp economy in my own creative way, beginning with a T-shirt. In perfecting the simple things, I feel things can grow and come to realize themselves in that classic, or eternal, feeling.
A commitment to stories and experience brought me to mythology and symbolism as a post-graduate field of study. Here I took up an interest in the morality of aesthetics and hemp entrepreneurship in such a way that connected with a desire to work with the cannabis plant. Various artists have committed their talents to our vision of reviving the American hemp trade, where all of our products are made from our hemp, from seed to stitch. – Recreator’s Director of Operations Matt McClain, currently working on his phD in Mythology of Cannabis at Pacifica Graduate Institute
Recreator Supports An Artists Co-op: We give artists incentive, financially and in terms of publicity (selling prints, custom pieces, etc.), but also the incentive of purpose: to heal, fuel, enliven, and loosen the grip of corporate culture on everyone’s eyes. Visual pollution has only made the environmental hazards of the fashion industry taste worse.
Day in a life of Recreator?
Well, it consists of thinking a lot about the future right now. We’re about to launch our website and a Kickstarter campaign, so it’s been hectic, just head down and charging into 2014. It’s not healthy, but until I can afford a gym membership and a motorcycle license, I’m printing shirts for money and building a brand.
Who are you talking to, target audience you wish to influence?
We’re targeting anyone interested in cannabis culture and frequent collaboration on anything from music to street art to graphic design. We like creative projects, whether it’s digital or on hemp canvas. Whatever. Our audience is likely one ranging from 18-35. Our line is targeted at men, but we offer apparel for women as well.
Most of our inspiration rests out here in the American West, with its cowboy culture that’s left a collection of misfits and idealists behind to carry it along. It’s interesting how many Nobel scientists, innovators and cults you can find popping up in the same general area.
We’re into skating, hiking, biking, kayaking, climbing, camping, paddle-boarding and making: from rap to folk, from the hood to the wood. Hopefully our brand can reflects some these influences.
Our apparel is cut so the wearer can move comfortably while maintaining complete body coverage, cut for motion in comfort. Our 70/30 cotton to hemp blend is quite lightweight, meant for supreme breathability and drying time. It’s the most high-quality fabric we could source at a competitive price point for other garments made in America.
Our 100% hemp T-shirt is the only one like it in the world, and has a commanding performance compared to anything cotton or polyester has to offer: anti-microbial, hypoallergenic, climate-responsive and it can shape to fit when wet, offering nature’s own custom-shapeable performance fiber.
Just so happens that area needed something more than cotton and polyester to showcase its talents and business interests, so we want to get hemp production up worldwide, especially in America, so that we can compete with companies to mass distribute higher quality hemp apparel for printing and promotional opportunities.
We are an active lifestyle brand with influences from street wear, skate wear, and performance apparel. Our gear is made to challenge fashion and industry at-large to take on more responsibility about resources and ecology; it’s rare to find organic cotton garments made in America (where basic environmental standards for textiles are more controlled than China), much less hemp offerings in casual wares.
We use social media to spread the word on all things hemp news: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram if possible. Our blog will feature Recreator coverage of hemp news and channels by which one can get involved in the hemp movement, most of it thanks to the folks at Vote Hemp.
In November the Recreator team harvested hemp in Colorado with Ryan Loflin and some other beautiful volunteers. What a gnarly experience!
Soon after, we went to the HIA Conference in Washington D.C. to learn, network and lobby on behalf of the hemp industry. Recreator met with the offices of Senator Barbara Boxer, Rep. Xavier Becerra, Senator Dan Coates, Rep. Thomas Massie, and Tennessee Senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker.
In December we hosted a Hollywood screening of Bringing It Home, the hemp documentary.
We are currently organizing a chapter for a hemp trade group located in our home state of Indiana. There we have a representative helping push state legislation on our behalf alongside a growing list of industries and farmers. We hope to legalize hemp research and small-plot cultivation in Indiana in 2014.
The Emperor Wears No Clothes by Jack Herer:
Jack Herer’s rabid, omnivorous collage of hemp news and factoids was as schizophrenic as it was enlightening. Jack’s passion and ambition will live on forever inside every cannabis plant being grown in America, no matter how illegal you think it is in your state!
Stick to sci-fi and anime, for the imagination mostly. Miyazaki makes me want to make movies. John Carpenter’s They Live is becoming a more accurate cultural critique every year!
It was the best natural fiber we could find for human and Earth.
One Message From The Recreator team?
Sow the Seeds,
Restore the American Hemp Trade!
Recreator’s lastest release video defining Recreator Art & Lifestyle brand: