These are just a few words that I kept hearing during my interview with the guys from Detroit’s hottest clothing company, SOLO Detroit. SOLO, which stands for Stand Out Live Original, was a vision that founder and designer Zack Silver had in the fall of 2012. With creative minds of Jake Leider, Jordan Benghiat, Ben Workman, and Marcellus Wilford, SOLO Detroit has become a brand to be reckoned with. I caught up Zack, Jake and Jordan, and asked them a few questions about their brand and the great city of Detroit.
What is SOLO Detroit?
Zack: SOLO Detroit is a clothing company inspired by the belief that you should always do what makes you happy. In college, I knew that I wasn’t going to be doing what I loved if I continued to pursue a degree in marketing, so I decided to take some time off and focus completely on SOLO. To me, this is how I “Stand Out and Live Original.” I want to inspire others to “Live Original” and do what makes them happiest. So to put it simply, I guess the inspiration behind SOLO Detroit is just being happy in what you do with your life, however that may be.
Jordan: Not only is SOLO about being yourself, but it’s about doing whatever you need to do to achieve your goals.
What drew you to the city of Detroit?
Jake: There was a niche that needed to be filled in the city. There is a lot of Detroit apparel out there. But the difference between SOLO Detroit and the other clothing companies is that SOLO aims to give its consumers an emotional and physical upgrade. Our clothes are meant to not just make people look good, but also feel good.
We want our clothes to inspire the people of Detroit to live original. We saw the great changes happening in the city and jumped on the opportunity to offer a product that parallels the positive changes Detroit is seeing.
Zack: I was drawn to Detroit because this is where I am from. It’s the same city my father has been taking me to for as long as I can remember. I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.
What is SOLO doing in the community?
Jordan: We just had our first of many “SOLO Live” events at New Dodge Lounge in Hamtramck. SOLO Live is a summer concert series that brings people together to celebrate art and music, while offering a great place for young people to network. We really want to get people who live in the suburbs to come experience the city.
Jake: In January, we helped put on a fundraiser for the Heidelberg Project that raised more than $1400. We are always looking for opportunities to give back to the community.
What does the future look like for SOLO Detroit?
Zack: In the future, SOLO would love to be able to own its own storefront. That has been our goal since day one, and with all the exciting new renovations coming to Detroit, I could see it happening in the near future!
With a humble beginning, an impressive start and a bright future, SOLO Detroit is only looking upward and onward. They just released their spring 2014 line that is available for purchase on their website, www.SoloDetroit.com and at Double Up in Ferndale, Birmingham and East Lansing. Look out for SOLO Detroit at local events and concerts, and be sure to check them out on Facebook and Twitter. And I guarantee, it won’t be long until you see someone walking around with some SOLO Detroit gear on.