Created in 2004 as an alternative business model to traditional fashion lines, Blood is the New Black sought to propel the careers of emerging artists and support the underground community, all while creating wearable, stylish clothes with a point of view. I worked with every artist to open up their unique vision to fans of both fashion and the arts who might not otherwise be exposed to their work. This was accomplished in a number of ways: - Allowing artists total creative freedom to design their tees however they want, right down to the tag that bears their name. - Directing a portion of sale of each shirt right back to the person that designed it. - Exploring various printing and dyeing techniques in order to fully accommodate the range of styles and mediums that the artists engage in.
From illustrators and photographers, to sculptors and writers, the unique works featured on the soft, well-fitted tees cover the gamut of design trends and were sold in stores all over the globe like Colette, Isetan, Urban Outfitters, Nordstrom, Zumiez, Pacific Sunwear, ASOS, among others.
Artists under the umbrella include but are not limited to Todd Tourso (Beyonce's Creative Director), Cali DeWitt (Kanye West Pablo tour), Lisa Hanawalt (Bojack Horseman), Pamela Love (CFDA award winner), among over a hundred others.
"Founder Mitra Khayyam was one of the pioneers of using artists' work on T-shirts, before big brands such as RVCA and Quiksilver got in on the game." - Los Angeles Times
Blood is the New Black Bio
Directed creation of original Midnight Rider graphics by designers on a seasonal basis since 2012. Researched vintage wash and grinding treatments to create the perfectly worn-in vintage look and feel tees.
Midnight Rider by Mitra Khayyam brings together the various inspirations of fashion industry veteran and good-hearted woman. With her deep-rooted love of music as a starting point, Midnight Rider offers classic American iconography refracted through a modern sensibility, resulting in designs that reflect an earnest enthusiasm for all things Americana. Proudly made in Los Angeles, the line is a wearable tribute to Austin, Nashville, Bakersfield and beyond. Pulling inspiration from (and featuring licensed apparel including) icons like Waylon Jennings, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Bob Dylan and The Band, Townes Van Zandt, Janis Joplin, Nudie's Rodeo Tailors, and Woodstock - the brand encompasses the vagabond dreamers and rhymers of song.
About Midnight Rider
Sol Cal gears up explorers for an unconventional future. Reminding us of human-kind's capacity to overcome the impossible. Materialized in California and realized in the cosmos, Sol Cal is the brainchild of Gabe Gault - artist, explorer and product of the final decade of the 20th century.
I built a team to bring Gault's vision to reality - managing an apparel designer, graphics team, and copywriter to create the brand's sample collection and deck.
The Wall is led by mastermind celebrity fitness guru, Jason Wimberly. With over a decade of experience in the industry, and after having taught over 5,000 classes, his dream was to create a fitness experience that knocked down the walls that separate us. To bring like-minded people together to generate a force bigger than their perceived limitations, The Wall propels us forward, resulting in personal success and growth.
Creative direction, design management, and production of The Wall's first collection of branded apparel sold in their fitness studio as well as their website.
Launched in 2010, Little Warrior created infant and children's clothing made in Los Angeles using imported Japanese textiles, Mexican blankets, and overdyed flannels and other fabrics. The line was available at stores like TenOverSix, Mohawk General Store, and Tomboy in Los Angeles - and despite no longer being in operation still has requests for archival pieces to be reproduced.
"If "mini-me" Juicy Couture tees and Levi's skinny jeans aren't your idea of stylish kids clothes, try this concept on for size: edgy, Southwest-inspired baby and toddler clothes.
Little Warrior -- a line of costume-y toddler clothes that boast Chimayo-inspired graphics -- launched Wednesday morning with its own website.
And it's so hip, it hurts. There are six styles in total, including a hand-embroidered hooded poncho of the ilk that might have cloaked Robert Plant in his Led Zeppelin days; T-shirts with bold graphics including a fang-filled mouth; and an ultra-baggy pants romper with a Chimayo-inspired print on the back that would fit right in at cool-kid cafe Casbah in Silver Lake.
Of course all this coolness will cost you. Prices range from $22 for tiny little athletic shorts to $72 for the cape-like poncho and $74 for the romper -- which you just know your child will outgrow within three months.
But the designs, which are manufactured in L.A. using overdyed cotton blends, make for killer baby-shower gifts -- and range in size from newborn to 4T.
The line is available online now but will hit stores, including Clover in (where else?) Silver Lake, on May 15." - Los Angeles Times
The New York based fitness company and division of Equinox needed to build their merchandise division for both their studios and website. Working with their buying and merchandising team, I developed new washes, bodies, and prints for coveted SoulCycle tees worn by stars like Kelly Ripa, Olivia Wilde, Vanessa Hudgens and Reese Witherspoon.
Took concepts from a Led Zeppelin pitch by a globally recognized celebrity licensing company and turned them into physical samples in less than four weeks. Styles ranged from a wool vest, complete with custom cast buttons and jacquard liner, an intarsia knit sweater, to vintage army jackets emblazoned with chenille, chain stitched and hand-embroidered patches.
Black Standard, a stand-alone knitwear collection was developed to show hand in hand with Blood is the New Black featuring separates that could be mixed and matched within the line or with graphic tees. Employing unique dye techniques, the line featured not-so-basic basics. Black Standard later developed into a private label division offering quality garments at competitive prices for fashion driven clientèle.
Partnered with Nylon Magazine to celebrate their 11th Anniversary. Choosing 11 covers (one from each year) and 11 artists to reinvent them, the designs ended up as tees available through ASOS and select Japanese retailers.
Nylon 11th Anniversary Tee Shirts
Partnered with Silva Artist Management and Beck to produce an original Beck tee design. Shirt was given away to VIPs at Magic Tradeshow, sold on Beck's US and Japanese tour, and available boutiques worldwide. Beck's "Gamma Ray" video was debuted as part of a video installation I designed for Magic Tradeshow concurrent with the album's release during the summer of 2008.