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Meet Jalen and Grace Harris of Sleeves Of Success in San Diego

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jalen and Grace Harris.

Jalen and Grace, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Sleeves Of Success started when my wife and I were trying to figure out how we would leave our mark on the world. Loving fashion, having a desire to tackle social issues and wanting to deconstruct stereotypes we came up with Sleeves of Success. We are both covered in tattoos and constantly feel scrutinized by older generations who think tattoos mean you won’t succeed in life, that’s where the name comes from. It also Doubles as S.O.S. because we use 10% of every purchase to help fund our monthly outreach projects for the homeless community. It started with a couple of people and a grill and has transformed into a mini block party. We pass out clothes, hygiene kits, food, free haircuts and we have a live DJ. The clothing aspect has grown exponentially too, we started with a couple of t-shirts and now we sell shirts, crop tops, hoodies, crewnecks and hats.

Has it been a smooth road?
We are grateful for every pothole and speed bump we’ve hit. Our mantra at sleeves is that “failures are precise instructions on how to improve”. We have had our site crash multiple times, designs come in late and or incorrect, clothing be the wrong material, models and photographers cancel shoots last minute. As for the outreaches we’ve had hostile attendees ( drugs play a big role into the mood of the homeless community depending on the day ). We’ve had technical difficulties with barbers and stylists and their generator. One month someone literally OD’d down the street and one of our team members was able to get his heart beating again and stabilized until EMT arrived. With all of that said with each obstacle, we’ve had the opportunity to grow and learn from them.

We’d love to hear more about your organization.
We are a streetwear company that uses a portion of profits to provide immediate relief to the homeless community. Were most proud of our ability to bring all different types of people together through our brand every month to pump love into the community, what sets us apart is we aren’t just a clothing brand and we also aren’t just a charity event. We are most proud when we are able to use what we make each month to not just help others on the street but make them feel valued and seen. Our outreach projects turn into little parties with people singing, dancing and having a good time. so for a couple of hours, they have the chance to escape their surroundings without the use of drugs but just positive vibes.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
As high fashion continues to blend with streetwear the effect on the global economy shows nothing but growth. you see more and more collaborations with Gucci and Louis vutton with brands like Supreme. these shifts have a lot to do with hip hop, skate culture and the exposure in media.

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