Published on September 11th, 2015 | by Marshall Samuela0
Fix up, look sharp in six of Tacoma’s freshest streetwear brands
Over just the past few years, Tacoma has seen impressive growth in the development and availability of local streetwear brands.
Thanks in large part to trailblazers like Fice, PolyRev, and eTc, Tacoma is fast becoming a mecca for creative entrepreneurs.
Here is a round-up of some of the stand out, must-have local brands:
Striving to better the community, Poly Rev continues to do so by reaching out and inspiring the youth, participating in local festivals, and unifying the brand’s participants under one root cause of change.
Best known for the original Tacoma Dome umbrella tee and the three equally attractive sub-brands; Loyal O&P, Adventure Supply Co, and Born & Bred, Poly Rev says, “it’s more than just a brand, it’s a lifestyle.”
Where to find Poly Rev: polyrev.com
5435 S Tacoma Way, Tacoma WA 98409
Perris Wright and Umi Wagoner of eTc Tacoma sell more than just select brands like PhreshCru, Above Average, and their own by the same name; they sell a lifestyle. These culture cats’ endorse more than hats, tees, and other accessories – they nurture performance arts and orchestrate their influence in Tacoma’s street culture and urban community.
Wagoner well articulated the eTc vision when asked about giving Tacoma’s youth a platform, he shared that eTc believes that “providing opportunity produces progression.”
Where to find eTc: etctacoma.com
907 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402
There’s something to be said about exclusivity in the realm of street wear and the Gallery of Ambition consistently demonstrates this effect. Usually producing only a limited run of designs, the curator, Dion Thomas has immortalized his brand’s’ presence in the downtown Tacoma community and culture.
The Sides of the Town tee and the recent African-American? tee contribute to the city’s thriving diversity and the Gallery’s legacy.
Where to find Gallery of Ambition: galleryofambition.bigcartel.com
Tacoma Apparel Co., better known by its initials T·A·C, pulls influences from sports, media, and street culture for its designs.
The brand’s reputation comes from mastering the minimalist art of flipping logos and cleverly referencing their aesthetics to the City of Destiny where T·A·C’s originality transpires. A part of that effect includes unifying individual pieces of the line with a narrative through line.
Where to find T·A·C: tacomaapparelco.tumblr.com
eTc regularly stocks T·A·C: 907 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402
With a design aesthetic as clean as the music he produces under the same name, Fice offers original material in every form.
Conceptualizing graphics since 2005 and producing the first run of Tacoma Tiger tees in 2011, Fice pulls his primary inspiration from Tacoma. Retaining a limited run of designs yields a high demand for Fice’s quality product and contributes to the brand’s growing popularity.
Where to find Fice: ficemusic.com
With ten years of graphic design experience, Fame Takers is a Tacoma-based streetwear brand bridging the gap between fashion and the anti-establishment aesthetic of street art.
The brand is guided by graffiti artists operating as individual brand ambassadors, each given the freedom to express their unique vision. With this sort of mindset and so much continuous growth in Tacoma’s art scene, Fame Takers said it best, “it’s time to cultivate a better relationship between art and the people”.
Where to find Fame Takers: fametakers.com
Find more, learn more
Looking for more places to shop? Many of these brands and more can be found at eTc as well as at Bleach (1934 Pacific Ave Tacoma, WA 98402) and Grit City Grindhouse (311 S 7th Street Tacoma, WA 98402).
Want to learn more about streetwear, brand development, creative direction, and the history of hip-hop and street fashion?
Join many of the brands featured here on September 24 for a special film fashion event at The Grand Cinema.
The evening, hosted by Tacoma Surf Club and eTc, will include a film screening of the new documentary Fresh Dressed, a panel discussion from local designers and brands, and an after party featuring DJ Sean the Shaman.
Featured photo by Léa Godoy.