Cotton the First™ makes reasonably priced and high quality men’s slim-fit shirts, following a simple philosophy, fewer but better. Designed in San Francisco by Charles Suwannaporn, the company pushes the Silicon Valley tech crowd slightly over its fashion boundary, in a good way.Read More
Sheeva Van Gemeren, is co-founder and designer of Lo Swim. Lo Swim is a Northern California based swimwear brand designed by former competitive swimmers with the goal of enhancing competitive training swimwear. Sheeva is a former Davis competitive swimmer, who set out to create something she never had during her collegiate career, a fashion forward suit that stood up to the intense demands of training. One of the components of her design process is to distribute samples to the Davis and Cal swim teams, so each piece is rigorously tested and perfected before going into production.
Her company designs a hydro-dynamic, fashionable alternative to Speedo, and provides competitive swimmers and triathletes with suits that combine ultra-durable fabric with adjustable elements to ensure a custom fit—while incorporating unique style elements unlike any other training suit. Sheeva would like to explore the possibilities of using the Intel Curie to track performance.Read More
Jeff Ladra grew up on the San Francisco peninsula, but became an outdoorsman at an early age. Learning to fly fish at 8 years old, he spent every summer vacation with his family exploring the rivers and streams of Northern California, Oregon, Wyoming and Montana.
His love for the Outdoors led him to attend college at the University of Oregon, where he earned a degree in political science ... while truly majoring in fly fishing for steelhead trout. After graduating, Jeff moved back to the Bay Area where he worked in sales for a subsidiary of Pitney Bose.
While successful in sales, Jeff always dreamed of working in the outdoor industry, so he enrolled at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) San Francisco and focused his program towards outdoor apparel. His program emphasis was in product development, which led to a job at VF Outdoor where Jeff worked for the JanSport brand.
Jeff spent seven years at VF climbing the corporate ladder from a specification technician to a developer. He then landed the position of product line manager for the entire Outdoor/Outside category of technical backpacks - a category he grew in 2 years from $2MM to over $10MM globally.
During his free time, Jeff created a line of outdoor flannel shirts that would eventually turn into the Pladra brand. Jeff and his business partners spent over four years working on Pladra as a side project, until the company gained enough traction for Jeff to take the leap of going full time. Jeff is now committed to creating and manufacturing the highest quality of outdoor apparel in San Francisco.Read More
Peter Papas has spent nearly two decades in fashion design and merchandising, working with global brands ranging from outlet and mass merchandise to high-end luxury. A graduate of the New York University Stern School of Business, Peter has worked in the fashion industry on the East and West Coasts.
In 2013 he launched his own line of heritage-inspired men's apparel under the name Blade + Blue. The line was inspired by the element of timeless style captured in old photos of Peter’s father and grandfather from the '50s and '60s. Peter designed Blade + Blue to reflect how men are connected through time by traditions - like mixing a martini, achieving a close shave & knotting a tie.
Blade + Blue merchandise is available in retail stores in three states as well as online.Read More
Originally from South Korea, Dahae Kim is a contemporary menswear designer, creating unique, asymmetrical, and complex designs for her menswear brand, aDiKtion.
After receiving a BFA in Menswear Fashion Design from the Academy of Art University, Dahae received a portfolio scholarship from the CFDA and was named as a best emerging designer of 2011 from the San Francisco Fashion Award. She also taught fashion design at Raffles International College in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Dahae draws inspiration from contemporary music, industrial architecture, and dark, psychotic concepts to create alchemical interpretations of modern life in each of her designs. The aDiKtion collection is structured on Dahae’s strengths: Pattern manipulation, the subtle mix of flowing drapery and architectural tailoring.Read More
Artful Gentleman’s Co-Founder, Chief Designer and Style Curator Jake Wall comes from a marketing background, with a bachelor’s degree from University of California, Berkeley, as well as a master’s degree and an MBA under his belt. However, in 2010, Jake rebooted his career, becoming a sewing apprentice with classically trained bespoke tailors in Hong Kong.
Soon after, Jake founded the Artful Gentleman. Artful Gentleman produces custom-tailored suits, tailored shirts, separates and tuxedos that address the fashion needs of men and women of all sexual orientations. The customization process offers up to 500,000 combinations so that no two suits are alike. It is Jake’s personal mission to inspire others to express themselves through well-fitted, stylish wardrobe. He is committed to the city’s LGBT community’s fashion sense and is a published author on gender construction, with a focus on gender roles in modern comic books.
Artful Gentleman suits were worn by a folk rock band The Lumineers to the 2013 Grammy Awards and featured in Bay Fashion Magazine and Bay Area Reporter. Jake also participated in San Francisco Fashion Week in 2012. Artful Gentleman is the style curator for the nationwide 2013 “Modern Man: Art of the Suit” event, part of the Chivas Regal “Brotherhood” marketing campaign.Read More
Born in San Diego, California, Justin found his passion for the arts at a young age. His influence stemmed from his grandmother, with whom he spent his childhood and early adolescence creating crafts and various works of art. At the age of 20, Justin moved to San Francisco, California, to further his knowledge of the arts and to pursue his dream of fashion design. A trip to Tokyo, Japan, gave Justin insight to a new and diverse world of fashion, which holds as a solid inspiration in his designs today. Justin graduated with honors from The Art Institute of California - San Francisco and holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design with a focus in Menswear.Read More