WHO ARE WE?
My name is Nick and I am the founder of PRETTY UGLY. I started this brand just to make stuff that I simply wanted for myself. I like simple things... a perfect white tee, a great hoodie. These are everyday items that everyone wears but for me they need be done just right. A tee with an amazing fit, a great fabric and the perfect wash in my opinion can elevate an outfit so much and make it wearable to almost any occasion.
Growing up I was a huge Nirvana fan. I'm pretty certain Kurt didn't put much effort into choosing what he threw on, but to my eye everything he wore was so great. He coined some iconic looks by just being comfortable and creating that "effortless style". Kurt also suffered from depression and addiction and unfortunately chose to take his own life. This horrible disease we call ADDICTION is proven to be genetic and unfortunately runs in my family affecting myself as well. I know firsthand that living with addiction or depression can make living an everyday life extremely difficult for alot of people. It was a lifetime of ups and downs and not of work to get to where I am today but I'm currently happy, focused and motivated which allows me to do what I love... make clothes. But there are still TONS of people suffering from this ugly disease and I wanted to find a way to make clothes and help these people at the same time. How did I do that? Keep reading...
WHY THE NAME?
I remember when I was living in an inpatient facility I had a LOT of downtime and was only allowed things like crayons and a notebook. Being in a very weird state of mind at the time I would just write simple words down into this notebook I had. My brain was not functioning how it normally does. Months later I found that notebook and was actually moved by alot of the words and phrases I wrote down.... such as "Fuck Fear", "Im-Perfect", "GOD", "Help" amongst many others. But the one world that hit me was "UGLY". I just stared at this one page, with just one word on it and tried to understand what it meant. I must've written it down for a reason. "Hmmmm, well I can't create a clothing brand called UGLY.. that would be a little weird." At the time and for years I did feel... ugly. Not happy with myself... and really for no reason... I had nothing horrible going on... I just had this chemical imbalance in my brain that really sucked. That day, I said to myself... that's it... I got this... life aint so bad, I'm not ugly, I can beat this. I literally ripped out that page, turned it upside down and tacked it on my wall... as a reminder that I'm not UGLY. No one is. Everyone is beautiful. Taking an antonym of the word ugly... I fell in love with the phrase "Pretty Ugly". And from there it started to somewhat come together.
BUT NOW WHAT?
Ok I have a name that I love, but how is selling clothes going to help people with depression, addiction and mental illness? Being an art student and having a background in design I created a logo inpired by my favorite designer Yves Saint Laurent and started screen printing inspirational words or phrases having to do with addiction or depression (alot of them taken from that very same notebook) in just a very plain simple Helvetica font onto tees and hoodies. I put them up on my Facebook page, created an online store and people started commenting on them, and even buying them (not many, but some).
This now turned into the opposite of what I wanted to originally do... create clothes for myself (I don't really wear graphic tees). Here and there yeah or if it's simple and meaningful. I love good basics, great washes. So I started learning how to make the things I spoke about in the very first paragraph... great simple white tees, then some with awesome washed hoodies, etc. Pretty Ugly turned into mainly a basics brand, but I still kept that upside down UGLY print (since it meant so much to me) which has now become our staple, and how everyone recognizes the brand. But, I'm still not doing what I said I would do... HELPING these millions of people still suffering from mental illness, addiction, depression, suicide. So i found Project Semicolon. What is Project Semicolon?
Project Semicolon is an organization dedicated to the prevention of suicide while also presenting love & hope to the who suffer from mental illness and addiction. Their work is based on the foundation and belief that suicide is preventable and everyone has a role to play in preventing suicide. Through raising public awareness, educating communities and equipping every person with the right tools, we know we can save lives. Project Semicolon is a national 510(c)(3) nonprofit organization governed by our Board of Directors and operating under the nonprofit laws of the State of Colorado. Project Semicolon works at the international, nation, state and local levels to prevent suicide using a public health model in suicide prevention; concentrating it's efforts on education and awareness. Project Semicolon operates by the guidelines published in the Surgeon Generals Call to Action to Prevent Suicide (1999) and the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (2012). Over the years, Project Semicolon's Board of Directors, staff and volunteers have included survivors who bring a special affinity for suicide prevention, along with other skills, to ensure organizational growth, development and effective management and operational talents to the agency.
HOW DO WE HELP?
When I say we, I mean you guys as well. Every purchase made here at PrettyUgly.shop helps someone suffering by providing a 3% donation to Project Semicolon. Your generosity and support helps Project Semicolon to maintain, update and create trusted self-help resources and expand community programs.