Jamaican culture inspires clothing line
Dreemz Apparel, a Jamaica-made street clothing collection, is taking inspiration from Jamaican slangs and music to originate eye-catching designs for everyday wear.
"Anything that has to do with urban wear and the street lifestyle overall has influenced the designs. It is Jamaican life, but not just focused on culture," said Kirk Williams, the creator of Dreemz Apparel.
Over the summer, Williams discovered that some copycat Dreemz Apparel designs were being sold in downtown Kingston by streetside higglers and a few wholesales, so he had to find innovative ways to make a difference with the street collection.
"The 'My Dawg Dem Affi Live' designs were being knocked off. While the slangs or lyrics are not owned by Dreemz Apparel, everything printed had a unique look that separated the street collection from any other Jamaican-made T-shirt or clothing designs," he said.
"In a sense, it is no way good to see your hard work and creativity used like that, without even making changes to it. Instead, they used the exact designs. Other designers I know may use the same phrases, but at least come up their own ways to present them. Persons bootlegging the designs could easily have made direct contact with me."
"I am always open to working with others for the goal of sharing my work and inevitably, a piece of Jamaica," Williams added.
Dreemz Apparel uses various applications, Photoshop and Illustrator, to create various characters and text styles, and the artwork is usually posted on the brand's social media pages for interested persons to make orders. Designs can also be customised by Dreemz Apparel, based on the needs of the customer.
Without a physical store, persons can buy from the clothing line through its Instagram page, email and ambassadors, many of whom attend local tertiary institutions.
And, Williams said the success so far "would not have been possible without the help of the ambassadors".
Dancehall artistes and various corporate businesses, including Jamaica National (JN), have since then caught on to the Dreemz Apparel street collection and have used it for promotional purposes. In less than a year, total number of followers increased from 4,000 to 24,000.