Freshman runs her own brand, New Retro Clothing – Marquette Wire

People create art for others to enjoy, so when Joey Falcus saw someone wearing his designs to school, he was overwhelmed with emotion.

“I would come to school and see a random person in the theater wearing the Banana Boy sweatshirt and it was like, ‘Oh my God,'” Falcus said. “I designed this, it’s something I made and they spent money on it and wore it to school, it was kind of crazy.”

Joey Falcus, a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences, runs his own clothing brand with merchandise featuring jokes from his friends.

The new retro clothes were those of Falcus quarantine project, occupying it while the world learned to navigate the pandemic and he couldn’t share his artistic passions outside the home.

“I’ve always been the kind of person who needs a creative outlet that I keep coming back to,” Falcus said.

His friends encouraged him to make the clothes, inspiring him with stories and jokes. There is a collection of clothes that bear the words “Banana Boy”, a term that Falcus said originated from a theater performance. It also sells tops with a slice of pizza on them, titled the “Pizza Thursday” shirts.

“Some of my favorite pieces are based on [Dungeons & Dragons] campaigns I was in with friends, and it was fun because I was able to incorporate all these different inside jokes. We always wore them to sessions, and it was a lot of fun,” Falcus said.

Apart from purchases from his friends, Falcus also received online orders through his website. Falcus worked with TeeSpring to create the clothes, a platform that helps designers sell their merchandise while sharing the profits.

“I’ll design the shirts in Photoshop and then upload them to TeeSpring, and they’ll have them printed and shipped, and take care of all of that on their back-end,” Falcus said. “I just wanted to create my own website to present it a little easier.”

Falcus’ designs and shirts were so successful that his teachers even noticed.

“People at the theater started carrying the designs, and my manager actually gave me the task of creating the official merchandising for the shows,” Falcus said.

Despite all that Falcus has achieved, he said he needed to get away for a while.

“I tend to obsess over a creative work in progress, so I went really hard and produced several designs a week. It was a lot of fun, but it was so much and I got burned out,” said Falcus said.

But with the university starting a new chapter in its life, Falcus said he may return to the brand, updating every now and then with new designs.

Falcus’ main motivation for the clothing brand was his relationships with others and how they influenced his life.

“I think there’s a lot to be said for the idea of ​​creating creative work out of personal things between you and the people you love in your life,” Falcus said. “I always love making pieces that show all of these connections between us. Fueling your creative passion with love for yourself and others is how you’ll get the most out of it.

Falcus’ friends and family supported him throughout the process and were there to celebrate when he was successful. A shining moment for Falcus was when he said he had a photo shoot for his clothes and some friends modeled the clothes.

“It was one of the coolest days of my entire life. Seeing so many real things come out of these clothes that I created that all these people already had, it’s such a rewarding feeling,” Falcus said.

Another of Falcus’ proudest moments was the creation of his Pride collection. With rainbow stripes along the shirts, the clothes celebrate loving yourself and being who you are.

“[The Pride collection] was my first real project besides inside jokes, like branching out into regular designs,” Falcus said. “It’s something very important to me. and June rode and it went well.

While Falcus had taken a break from New Retro Clothing, he may be making a comeback.

“I might like to go back and do a bit more, but I’ll never go as hard as before,” Falcus said. “I got better at actual art as opposed to graphic design, so maybe I could incorporate some of that as well.”

Stay up to date by following @newretroclothing on Instagram.

This story was written by Izzy Fonfara Drewel. She can be contacted at [email protected]


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