There's a new designer in town and he's encouraging locals to take their shirts off for a good cause. Less than a year ago, graphic designer John Kenney realized he was part of a consumer niche that wasn't being addressed -- late twenty- to early forty-something middle class and upper middle class professionals that have "outgrown the action sport brands but aren't quite ready for their dad's Tommy Bahama clothes."
So he created a line of casual, locally made menswear called Soul & Spirit
that's inspired by music and culture.
Kenney will officially unveil the line at a "The Shirt Off Your Back" Launch Party from 6-9 p.m. on Wednesday, June 30 at 5th & Wine, 7051 E. 5th Avenue in Scottsdale. Before you start drooling over the idea of dozens of hot girls stripping down to their bras or pasties, let us be clear: This event is specifically tailored for dudes.
|Courtesy of Soul & Spirit|
|Soul & Spirit's "Vintage Vinyl" tee.|
Women are welcome to attend the happy hour, but the first twenty guys through the door will receive a
Soul & Spirit t-shirt. Any guy who decides to take off the work shirt he's wearing and donate it to Career Gear
(a national charity providing upcycled business wear to men who have completed job training) will also score a complimentary tee. 5th & Wine will offer $5 drinks and happy hour specials during the bash.
Kenney is currently offering nine tee shirt designs through fashion store Local Talent AZ, though he says not all of the styles will be available at the Take Back Your Shirt event. If you're looking for a design that isn't on the freebie list, you can wander across the street to the shop and buy one. All of the purchases there help local up-and-coming designers.
"There's some talent in Scottsdale; some really good artists," says Kenney. "We really want to put Scottsdale on the scene as far as becoming a fashion area. It has beautiful people, beautiful golf courses, resorts." He plans to add a women's line in the future, though don't expect any shirtless events for that launch.