Our Modern Market series looks to highlight some of the best makers and artists from the Twin Cities and beyond. Each one of our vendors embody the Midwest’s unique take on modern living. These artisans are woodworkers, jewelry designers, leather workers, culinary artists and graphic designers.
Sota Clothing is all about celebrating the home that all Minnesotans share. This wonderful, beautiful freezing state is where we all choose to make our homes and it this community that lives in each and every piece that Sota Clothing produces. We at Modern Midwest are proud to call Minnesota home and are glad we can show off our home state love with all of the Sota Clothing apparel.
Tell us a little about yourself. What’s your background?
I grew up in Eden Prairie, Minnesota with six siblings and parents who encouraged us to take action on our strengths and creative ideas. The idea of Sota clothing started back in college as I was majoring in graphic design, which was about six years ago. And about two years ago is when I really looked back at what I started and decided to go all in. Before going full-time with Sota, I worked for Spacecrafting as a photographer. Having the variety of these backgrounds, I was able to do a lot of the different aspects of starting an e-commerce business myself regarding the marketing, photography, and graphic design. Once the company started to grow, I was able to bring on two of my sisters. One in which is now the director of merchandise and wholesale accounts and the other is specialized in shipping and customer care.
How do you go about creating new apparel design ideas?
I look at things that I like to wear. I also like to look at current trends and I try to find voids within the market or apparel items I would like to see and wear, but also have them align with the Minnesota lifestyle.
Where do you go to get inspired?
I look at other businesses my size that are doing really cool things and think of what Sota can expand to do.
What makes the Midwest, and specifically Minnesota, unique for makers?
The community of small businesses and the entrepreneurs that started these successful start-ups. I met an awesome group of entrepreneurs when first starting out that I can say who contributed to a lot of my success. We all look to each other for support and advice.
What makes shopping local special?
Buying something for someone that is crafted with so much effort and caring behind it makes the gifts you’re giving more meaningful.
Who are other makers in your community that we should know more about?
Solid Manufacturing and Sip Dark
What’s one thing a non-Midwestern native should know about the region?
The people and the community within Minnesota is what has really helped me get to where I am today. The support never lacks and seeing people get really excited about my brand is instant gratification.
What’s something exciting for Sota that we can expect coming up?
We are creating a new product line, Superior Goods, which is designed in Minnesota and made in the USA. We will soon be releasing a henley and puffer vest. We have recently released our Kickstarter sweatshirt and a variety of Superior Goods graphic tees. Stay tuned to see what we will continue on crafting. ‘