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Rising Stars: Meet April Rogers

Today we’d like to introduce you to April Rogers.

Hi April, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I started as a punk rock rebel with a small cause. It escalated to realizing that I wanted to do something creative with my life and that was sustainable yet would make me happy. I got my bachelor’s in fashion design and shortly after graduation, I was not happy with how the fashion industry ran and didn’t want a part of it. I really wanted to make better for the world, yet I still had to pay the bills. Being brought up from an economically deprived family, I didn’t have any privileges and needed to support myself immediately after turning 18. I supported myself through college (paying for my tuition and working full time while being a FT student) and it certainly wasn’t the easiest. After graduation I got a taste of what the real fashion industry was and it disgusted me. I set out to make a small difference, but mainly hopes of educating people of the truth of the fashion industry and how to change it. Now I run my business mostly from Instagram and Etsy, and all of my garments are made with the environment as a priority. I do have a regular job to “pay the bills” mostly because my cause is more for what it CAN be, instead of making a quick buck. I pride myself on the fact that all my garments are handmade in the US and made with quality to last a lifetime. I take every effort to recycle, reuse, upcycle and do my part to make amazing garments without harsh effects to the environment. I mean…. they’re not all hippie hemp plant-based stuff, it does SOME harm, just as ALL fashion does, but I set out to not only make clothing that makes a small impact but educate my customers about the harms of fashion on the environment, and did I mention its metal af and hella comfy? It IS possible to make clothes that are sustainable, humane, and god damn cute/sexy/punk rock… and if I can eventually make a living off this, that would make me happy. Bottom line– I must be happy and proud of the product I produce. I take a lot of pride in my brand and any garment I create for others.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
I grew up from a “poor” background. We didn’t live off the streets or anything, but knowing my entire life growing up that IF I wanted to go to college, I’d have to go into years of debt for it while working and paying my bills. To top it off, after I turned 21 (my last year in college) I got a DUI ad lost my license. The shitty part was that I didn’t even blow the legal limit, yet the new training officer was just eager to get that arrest down (I got an attorney and everything). So while commuting to college (which was 55 miles away) I lost my license and had to take the train and a few busses to and from school. Sure it took a lot of planning and time away from when I could be working, but when you’re in design college you carry SO much crap (“supplies”) with you, and it was literally a struggle just to get to and from school. Aside from that, after graduating, I realized that everything I wanted to do was never gonna happen unless I took the long road. If I wanted to support myself and live, I needed a “desk job” but I knew that would make me more than just depressed, it wasn’t me. I had to accept that the “8-5” job model wasn’t for me. That some months would be more difficult than others and that I would have to work much harder to achieve the things I believed in. I’m still not there, BUT I’m not ready to give up yet.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I am a designer/seamstress. I design and personally create all my designs. I specialize in custom one-off garments; I don’t like mass produced items and I feel that everyone has their own voice and expresses it in their own way. I’d like to say I’m most known for my attention to detail. Even if no one else will notice, I will, so I won’t ever produce a garment that isn’t up to my standards. I’d like to believe that is also what sets me apart from the crowd. It’s never money motivated, it’s pride motivated. I must be proud of what I do, or it’s not worth doing.

Before we let you go, we’ve got to ask if you have any advice for those who are just starting out?
Any advice I would have for others is to just take your time. Really understand who you are and your cause. See what your motivation is and what your true goals are. And if you don’t have goals, that’s okay too. Oh yeah, be organized (or try to be at least). I kick myself in the ass everyday for that one.

Contact Info:

Image Credits:

Marijuana bodysuit: (IG) @asensualportrait (unsure of speific photographer) Girl in forrest bodysuit: (IG) @oakmist_photography (no name listed) Titled “favorite dress” photo: Matt Corkill

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