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Stripes is a Dutch clothing brand, made in prison. Team Stripes formed three years ago, and consists of four friends; Dave, Sascha, Roy and Said.
Our goal is simple: create high quality garments with inmates, a group sometimes forgotten by society. By teaching new skills in prison we offer a better chance after a prison-sentence. We produce authentic products that have a real story, reminding you how valuable freedom actually is.
Together with you we can take Stripes to the next step. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, we can produce our new collection in three prisons; in Belgium, France and the US. We can also increase our social impact for inmates working on our products.
You can support us by pledging for one of our rewards on the right hand side of your screen. If we meet our target goal we’ll start producing the rewards you pledged for. If we don’t meet our target goal, the pledged money will flow back to you.
In 2012 we started with one idea, nine screen-print frames, two buckets of ink and a prison workshop based in Utrecht (The Netherlands).
Our first collection consisted of printed t-shirts and pocket t-shirts. Printing was done at the prison workshop Wolvenplein (The Netherlands), while the pocket-shirts and labeling were done in the prison workshop of Nieuwersluis (The Netherlands).
Collection II consisted of another range of printed shirts & pocket t-shirt. During this time, we came in contact with prisons in Belgium, France and the US and saw the potential to grow into a mature clothing line made in prison. In close cooperation with the prison workshops we drafted patterns, selected the best fabrics and started producing our first basic cut-and-sew items.
So now we’re here. Our patterns have the right fit and several small badges have been sampled. Collection III is ready to produce. We want to take Stripes to the next level; increase production volume, produce more complex items and do more for the people that work on our products. We’ve teamed up with legendary tattoo-artist Henk Schiffmacher, who designed the flagship item of this Kickstarter campaign.
Our vision: Made in prison, inspired by freedom
Together we want to produce raw items for people who value young, creative and conscious companies. Companies with value expressed in social outcome. Stripes Clothing is born out of the vision that prison is a place where life, for inmates who are willing to work on this, can start over. We are proud of the quality inmates deliver and are driven to increase skill creating a real chance after a prison sentence.
After two collections we are now on the verge of producing our first cut and sew clothing line. Made in two European prisons (Bruges and Moulins) and one in the US (Pendleton State Penitentiary). By supporting Stripes Clothing you can make sure our brand is here to stay.
Once out of prison, it’s often hard to get life back on track. We want to contribute to this transition, allowing ex-inmates to adapt to society faster. That’s why we want to empower the people who want to work on our products by offering creative classes and work-related certificates. It’s not only beneficial for people who are released from prison, society as a whole benefit from this too.
- Creativity Classes: Creativity is not bounded by fences and bars. We know a lot of inmates have a story to tell. Aim of this program is to learn how to put inspiration into expression through art, writing and music. An one month creativity class will be given in Bruges prison when we meet our target goal. For instance, we want to combine a graffity class with painting the inner walls of the textiles workshop to establish a creative environment.
- Work related certificates and diplomas: Stripes wants to contribute with courses that are useful in finding a job after prison such as; computer programming, graphic design or business classes. Work-related certificates can be earned by inmates that are passionate about their work and want to increase skill on the job. But we have to cover the basics; We know from Bruges prison personnel that illiteracy is more common than you’d expect. That's why we want to give an one month basic illiteracy course in Bruges prison after this campaign.
Below you’ll find detailed pictures of our rewards. To pledge on one of our rewards, scroll back to the top and click on the reward you want on the right side of your screen. If you pledge on The Creative associate or The Saint you will fund an entire one month creativity class and/or work related certificate program. Set-up of these programs will be in close collaboration with you.
The rest of our rewards are tangible items we send to you once we meet our target goal. Henk will personally tattoo you in his own world famous Hanky Panky shop in Amsterdam!
- Handcrafted in custody - Every item we make is handcrafted in one of our prison workshops.
- High Quality and durable fabrics - We use high quality fabrics and the best finishing we can get. Inmates have skill, they prove this with every high quality item produced.
- Documented updates on production of your item - Live updates will come your way once we start producing. We will share photos, background stories and the actual production process.
- Increase creativity and skill of inmates - When we meet our goal, creativity classes and courses can be offered to inmates.
- The wall of fame - Grab your camera, a white background, write your name (or nickname) on a piece of paper/ cardboard/ whatever you want and send us your mugshot. At the end of the campaign we will create a wall of fame on our website, which will last 25 to life.
This means a lot to us, thanks! Together, we set up a one month creativity class in Bruges prison.
- Design a creativity program with us in art writing or music
- Creativity program will be named after you
You are a SAINT. Together we set up a one month creativity class and a basic literacy course in Bruges prison.
- Design creativity program with us in Bruges prison in art writing or music
- Set up basic literacy course with us
- Both programmes will be named after you
Risks and challenges
We identified risks and challenges on production level and how to effectively contribute to inmates future perspectives.
On production level the biggest challenge we face is getting the critique volume we need to be competitive with other brands. Cost-price of raw materials decrease fast after buying in greater quantities. Next to the right volume, exposure is a challenge Stripes faces. Getting a small brand to the stage it deserves is hard. With the Kickstarter campaign we can achieve the right production volume and present the brand to creative people.
We identified several challenges in how to effectively contribute to inmates future perspective. First, we have to identify and select inmates who want to grab every chance and are keen on a different life after prison. After that, we need to work closely with prison personnel to create a custom-made program that addresses the needs of the selected group of inmates. Every prison is different, every selected group of inmates is different.
We want to set up Stripes in as many textiles workshops as possible. This will be a challenge. However, local production means local social impact in every country we operate in. More textile workshops also means more products, collaborations with domestic brands and local authenticity. Stripes continues to be truly different from other brands. Our products are raw, are of high quality and have a vision. Unlike other brands, our products and vision are inseparable from each other.
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