Inside Premium Co. with Co-Owner Davin Gentry
Premium Co. has come a long way in just a short amount of time. Starting from making bracelets, to now releasing multiple clothing products per year. Davin Gentry, the co-owner of Premium Co. was so generous to give us a little insight into his brand. Here is the full interview.
"My name is Davin Gentry, I'm Designer & Co-Owner of Premium. I'm 30. From KY. Based in Washington DC. "
How has the process (transition) from making bracelets to now making technical clothing pieces been for you?
"My partner Tyler Hundley and I started the brand in 2011 with $300. We really didn't expect much, so the initial response from people was shocking. Getting 10 orders a day felt like we were really killing it. Looking back, obviously that was nothing, and as cliche as it is, everything was so simple then. Making bracelets was as easy as finding beads, coming up with a layout, taking product shots, and selling. We could release new bracelets daily. But we quickly realized that quality was key to not only long-lasting product but long-lasting customer relationships. It was always about improving the product and bringing something new to the table. We progressed from Gemstone Bracelets, to designing and casting our pendants and links. Clothing was always on my mind. Our introduction to clothing started with a photoshop mockup of a Sublimated Tee design. I posted the mockup on Instagram and it was undeniable by the response that we needed to release that tee. The Perseus Tee, the depiction of Perseus cutting off the head of Medusa. At that time, EVERYONE was using Medusa in their designs. It was basically us rebelling against the crowd. After that release and numerous consistent jewelry manufacturing issues, our clothing just pushed jewelry aside. But that whole process gave us a great foundation. "
Tell us about John Geiger and what it means to have his full support behind your brand
"John is one of my best friends. Obviously, it means a lot to have his support. We all support each other, that's what friends should do. People often confuse his support for ownership in the company, but he genuinely just likes our product. And if he doesn't like it, he doesn't like it. "
How was Vegas for you guys? You guys had a great setup at Liberty Las Vegas.
"Vegas was great. It's my home away from home, but I enjoy exhibiting and showing off the new product. We take pride in the work. With our new production team, we're all excited about the upcoming collections. And we're still a new brand, so there's still a lot of stores that we want to house Premium. So it's an achievement when we exhibit and lock in new accounts. It's also the first tradeshow where our entire team of 4 was in attendance. "
What is one of the most important aspects when you guys are making clothes, what do you focus on?
"The most important aspect is comfort. You could have the best quality item out, but if it's uncomfortable, you're not going to want to wear it. Comfort. Quality. Functionality. Those are all key elements, especially functionality. You won't see details that do not serve a real purpose from us. We also try to educate our customers along the way. Introduce them to new fabrics, techniques, washes, etc. "
How has the D.C. area been for you guys as a brand? Does it affect it in anyway?"
"D.C. is great. Even though fashion is a little slower here than NYC and LA, it's still one of our top 5 markets. We've had the whole area's support since day 1. The main downfall is that there isn't really a production scene here. That puts an extra strain on things compared to a brand who can be at their factory in 30 minutes. I'm a 4 hour flight from LA. If we could move our production team to DC, life would be swell. "
When can we expect new products- give us a glimpse into the near future.
"We have over 100 items set to release between now and Spring. We just released a few quick strike flannels and our new Classic Tees. Implementing a lot of new fabric this season. Revisiting some previous fabric on new silhouettes. Working in a new custom color story that I'm excited about. And launching our Brando Jacket, our take on the classic leather biker jacket."
To follow that, what is next for your brand, what is the next evolution?
"We're working. About to start Fall 2016, getting our studio set up, working on dates for our pop-up tour and just trying to keep putting people in great clothes. "
Lastly, what style advice do you have for our readers?
"My sense of style is my own. Clean and simple. Nice shoes, nice denim, nice tee, nice jacket. And a beanie. Pretty much daily. But that's my style. My advice would be to be true to yourself. Wear what makes you happy. Putting on clothes should make you feel good. Just like when you get a haircut, you feel like a new person. You should feel the same about clothes. "
Be sure to shop-premium.com
Follow Davin here!