AP NEWS

Oklahoma City artist finds success starting clothing line

June 17, 2019

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Haley Griffin is much like the clothes she makes — cool and comfortable.

In late 2017, the Arkansas transplant started DuBeck & Co., a clothing brand with threads created in south Oklahoma City and sold online, and at local fairs and events.

An artist at heart who wears her own designs, Griffin sees clothing as expression of oneself.

“I always had an interest in clothing,” Griffin told the Oklahoman. “I just want to spread a positive vibe through clothes.”

DuBeck & Co. came about after a little epiphany. A couple of years ago while working a management job at a telecommunications conglomerate, Griffin decided it was time to clock out of the corporate world and follow her passion.

“I knew that’s not what I wanted to do,” she said. “I woke up when I was 30 and was like ‘you gotta make a move.’”

She’s not alone. Contrary to stereotypes about millennials — those born between 1977 and 1995 — being lazy and less aspirational than previous generations, Griffin’s cohort is more likely to make their own hustle.

Nearly a third of millennials have started a business, compared to 22% of those in Generation X, and 19% of baby boomers, according to a 2017 survey released by America’s Small Business Development Centers, a network that supports entrepreneurs across the United States.

The survey was released the same year Griffin decided to strike out on her own. Named after Griffin’s nephew Duke, and niece Becca, Dubeck & Co. is more than a T-shirt company.

Griffin also creates hats, jackets, hoodies, sweatshirts and more, with many designs featuring a nod to her Arkansas roots and her Sooner State home. An “Okie Homie” cap or a limited edition shirt featuring the Arkansas pines and a hog come to mind.

She’s designed overalls and fedoras. Baby onesies and military-style coats. At her work shop recently, Griffin said she is designing a tomboy swimsuit.

“I want it to be clothing that everyone would wear,” Griffin said of designs. “I want people to do a double take when they see it.”

Her products can be browsed on the business’ website, and major social media platforms.

As brick-and-mortar apparel stores continue to close their doors, fashion e-commerce continues to grow. By some estimates, online fashion revenue will grow from about $545 billion in 2019 to $713 billion in 2022.

DuBeck & Co. has attracted more than 2,500 followers on Instagram. But flesh-and-blood interactions indicate how popular the new clothing line is starting to become.

At a festival in Norman, Griffin heard a stranger yell out: “There’s Dubeck!”

There she was and here she still is, designing her own life, one shirt, one hat, one tomboy swimsuit at a time.

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Information from: The Oklahoman, http://www.newsok.com

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