DAFT Clothing: A New Age Style Started by FSU Business Students
Lee Eisenberg, the former Executive Vice President of clothing retailer Lands’ End wrote a book called “Shoptimism: Why We Buy Things.” He describes two types of buyers, the classic buyer who buy based on needs and rationality, and the romantic buyer who cares less about durability and more about emotional satisfaction and appeal. Even those who shop emotionally transform their wants into needs at times. Social pressure for instance, can induce the emotional need for material things to fill the void of happiness or acceptance.
Frostburg State University’s students aren’t immune to this fact or these types of buyers. Many students in the small town do most of their shopping online. It helps to have a campus filled with talent and creative minds, including entrepreneurs and business-oriented students with a passion.
Business Administration senior, Osirus Babb, who some know as Ben Danklin, is one of these creative minds. In 2010, his childhood dream of having a clothing line came to life when he created a brand called DAFT clothing. DAFT stands for Dangerously. Adventurous. Fly. Trendsetters.
The DAFT trademark promotes freedom of style and personality. It defies the stigma of the need to fit in and upholds the value of standing out. “Just do what you want to do. Accept yourself, because you are who you are,” says Babb.
Yarne White, also a senior business major, describes Babb as “sociable, loyal, outgoing, friendly, and debonair,” which speaks volumes on why they have such a huge support system at FSU and in the Baltimore/DC area.
Two of his business partners are also students at Frostburg; Anthony Velasquez (Bink Backwood) the graphic designer and Noah Majinnasola (El Plaga) the public relations representative and designer.
Majinnasola, who does some sewing and patch work, expresses how much he wants to influence the youth through his music and fashion sense in the next few years. He hopes that one day he can make enough money so that his son can live comfortably and come to watch him perform.
Velasquez, who prefers Bink, says though much of his graphic design knowledge was instilled in him before college, FSU gave him access to grade A equipment that has helped him on his journey of perfecting his craft.
Their merchandise includes limited edition t-shirts, hoodies, sweatshirts, sweatpants, shorts, and hats. They also have a collection of buttons,stickers and lighters. The breakfast tee and the hockey jersey that buyers can customize with their own name are among their most popular items sold. “We sell out of everything, like hot cakes,” says Majinnasola. The three are very well known around campus and often take suggestions and orders on the spot if asked by their peers. Over the summer they participated in various pop up shops and art shows including one called Art Undiscovered, coordinated by another FSU student Shawna Jones.
The month of October was a promotional celebration called DAFTOBERFEST where new designs and graphics were released everyday through their social media platforms. On Halloween they released a short film entitled Nightmare on Wavy Ave., to commemorate films like “Scream” and “Scary Movie” while also endorsing their fall collection.
During the Thanksgiving holiday, DAFT participated in Black Friday by having a 20 percent off sale for everything in their shop. With the year coming to an end the team focuses on the official release of their new website some time next week which will include more graphics, media content and a possible video game.
“It’s Christmas time. You got to get Kobe’s for the lil homies,” says Babb about their upcoming Christmas sale.
One day they hope to open stores worldwide, with the first hopefully opening in their hometown of Baltimore City. A move to Atlanta, a cartoon series on Adult Swim, and endless designs worn by the youth all over the states are in the future of these young moguls.
“All of this is a process, for real. Once you start it, you just got to keep it going. We are going to get where we need to. There’s no worries,” says Majinnasola.
For inquires visit Shop.Daftclothing.com.