Made in America is getting stronger and stronger, and there are plenty of young guns flying the flag for domestic design and manufacturing. Read ahead for the industry names you need to know.
10 MANUFACTURERS UNDER 40
1. Rosemary Robinson and Britt Howard at Portland Garment Factory
Would you like your prototyping and technical design with a side of installation art? The Portland Garment Factory can help you check those boxes. This creative playground with serious manufacturing chops is the brainchild of Britt Howard and Rosemary Robinson, Oregon-based apparel designers-turned-manufacturers.
2. Alex Snyder at The DNA Group
Heading up The DNA Group is Alex Snyder, a long-time player in the fashion industry who’s worked on both design and manufacturing teams. At The DNA Group, he’s created not just a factory, but a full-service hub that includes brand management and creative development.
3. Alexandra Ferguson at Alexandra Ferguson
Taking the reins at her eponymous company in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park, Alexandra Ferguson is a renaissance woman: a designer and product developer, offering sourcing, pattern-making and sampling to emerging and established brands.
4. Stephen Jones at Black Anchor Manufacturing
Former air force flyer Stephen Jones is at the helm of Tacoma’s Black Anchor Workshop, where canvas and leather bags and smallgoods are king. Devoted to producing wares that last a lifetime, Black Anchor’s in-house brand isn’t the only beneficiary of this – it’s available to outside clients, too.
5. Alexander C. Tschopp at The American Knitting Co.
Young entrepreneur Alexander C. Tschopp keeps things running at The American Knitting Co., a factory based out of Brooklyn, New York that specializes in – you guessed it – high quality knit garments. If it’s the latest in multi-gauge knitting technology that you need, these are your guys.
6. Jordan and Jensen Adoni at Modern Vice
Over at Modern Vice, you’ll find Jordan and Jensen Adoni. Among other achievements, we’re pretty sure seeing Beyonce stepping out in a pair of your shoes is a career highlight. Based out of New York’s high-energy Garment District, the team at Modern Vice take customer service and quality execution ultra-seriously.
7. Joann Kim at Johnny’s Fashion Studio
She’s started classes on Skillshare, forged a career in marketing and knows her way around a measuring tape. Joann Kim sinks her teeth into every facet of the apparel manufacturing business (started by her father Johnny), and the New York fashion scene is all the better for it. Johnny’s Fashion Studio offers ‘couture-worthy knowledge’, working closely with young and experienced designers for a fully realized garment.
8. Matt Rogers at Clean Air Woodworks
With a background in Earth Sciences from Penn State, Clean Air has always been on Matt Rogers’ mind. Add to that woodworking, industrial sewing and welding skills, and you can see how the Hudson Valley factory has grown a loyal client base on the East Coast.
9. Caryn Hsu at Hemsmith
In the bustling Queens neighborhood of Long Island City, Caryn Hsu heads up Hemsmith, a factory with household name clients, including Macy’s and DKNY. The family business has been on the manufacturing scene since 1989, producing anywhere from 60,000 to 100,000 garments every month.
10. Jennifer Diana at JLD Studios
On the west coast, JLD Studios is one of the most reputable factories you’ll find. Working with brands such as Chubbies and Cotopaxi on everything from print design to patternmaking and production with no minimums, powerhouse founder Jennifer Diana has created a full-service facility for all things apparel.
10 BRANDS UNDER 40
Despite no formal training in fashion, Rodolfo Ramirez and Andrew Cheung left their past lives behind to shake up the men’s apparel game with handcrafted accessories, each one a statement featuring vibrant prints and bold details.
2. Wyatt Little
In a nutshell? Not what it looks like. Wyatt Little’s products are the stuff double-takes are made of: hats doubling as wall sculptures, or shoes that are actually planters. It’s art with a sense of purpose – and a sense of humor.
Bonding over textiles, textures and to some extent textbooks, college buddies Jolie Signorile and Gabe Cohen make lively decor and grown-up games. That is, when they’re not remodeling themselves a houseboat to make the rest of us jealous.
Peg Woodworking is a one-woman show run by Kate Casey, a Brooklyn-based designer and woodworker. With geometric shapes taking center stage in her work, you’ll also find influences ranging from hand-cut joinery to Danish cord weaving, crochet and macrame.
5. Ink & Tailor
Memorable moments and lived experiences become wearable wraps thanks to Ink & Tailor, the brainchild of K’era Morgan and Maya von Geldern. Coming from PR and art backgrounds respectively, this venture is the result of channeling a shared passion for travel, art and nature.
6. Nikki Chasin
New York-based up-and-comer Nikki Chasin’s eponymous line plays with eclectic influences – preppy, artsy, vintage – yet comes together with a clean, cohesive look that’s entirely her own. Never taking herself too seriously, the Nikki Chasin girl knows how to have fun – without sacrificing style.
Ceramics take on curved forms in Michiko Shimada’s Brooklyn studio, where the Japanese-born designer makes everything by hand in small batches. Elegant, unusual and playful, her pieces make you think twice as you admire them.
Designers Rachel Gant and Andrew Deming started Yield Design in 2012, designing functional, modern pieces that are no slouches aesthetically – or ethically. Incorporating technologies like 3D and digital printing along with handcrafting techniques, sustainable production meets timeless design for products that never compromise.
An industrial design background and architect parents imbued designer Zara Dramov with a love of clean lines and organic forms – resulting in her handbag line, The Common Knowledge. Look closer, and you’ll see another inspiration: the way bone meets skin informs her sculptural shapes.
10. Future Glory Co.
Based out of San Francisco’s Dogpatch district, designer Theresa Lee makes stunning, high-quality leather bags, but it’s not just about good looks. Future Glory alsos work with women’s center Because Justice Matters, training up workers in an apprenticeship program.
Stay In The American Made Loop!
- 11 American Manufacturers Under 40
- Why Made in America?
- Checklist: Things To Do Before Meeting A Factory
- What Does Modern Made In America Look Like?