American Apparel

American Apparel

Created in 1989 by designer Dov Charney, American Apparel has grown over the years to become one of the largest scale manufacturers of clothing in North America.

 

The Basics

Founded in Montreal, Canada, the company moved to L.A. in 1997, where it continues to produce active wear and casual wear designed in Los Angeles and manufactured in the United States. The company’s best sellers include classic wearable such as denim Sherpa jackets, oxford shirts, fleece zip hoodies, and T-shirts. Among other things, American Apparel is one of only a handful of clothing manufacturers to export large quantities of clothing made in the USA.

 

American Apparel’s corporate culture includes an absolute ban against using any goods or materials derived from “sweatshop labor,” The company’s factory is fully compliant with U.S. labor laws, with four thousand American factory workers averaging above twelve dollars per hour. The manufacturing plant itself is a seven-story affair in downtown L.A., producing well above fifty thousand different types of garments and accessories throughout the year.

 

The Marketing Pro

With its edgy marketing, American Apparel has often been considered “avant grade” in marketing as much as in fashion, even scoring a “Marketer of the Year” award at the first annual L.A. Fashion Awards.

 

 

The brand has bagged “Label of the Year” by The Guardian, and the Intelligence Group (a firm researching markets and trends) listed it as second only to Nike as a Trendsetting Brand, single-handedly starting fads among Americans.

 

The company has also assumed a key position on reforming immigration laws, and its outspoken stand on gay rights, featuring campaigns dubbed “Legalize LA” (supporting immigration reform) and a “Legalize Gay” campaign featuring the country’s first openly transgender fashion model, Isis King. American Apparel has been a pop culture favorite for decades, eminently recognizable to Americans and international audiences alike.

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