Denver Flea Blog - "Meet the Maker" (This is an interview with our owner, Jeremy Dougherty)
- Article by Devon Klug (November 18th 2017)
A first Holiday Flea vendor, Maroon Bell Outdoor is a fashion-conscious outdoor apparel line started by Jeremy Dougherty, a fourth generation Coloradoan. Launched just over six months ago, Dougherty was inspired to start Maroon Bell Outdoor out of his love for fashion and the outdoors, paired with his goal to create the next great American company. Whether you're hiking in the morning or meeting pals for a drink downtown, Maroon Bell's t-shirts, hats, and accessories will make for the perfect outfit. Best yet? 3% of the company's sales are given back to non-profits who are helping to make the world a better place.
WHAT DOES YOUR BRAND MEAN TO YOU?
Maroon Bell Outdoor is the embodiment of what can exist by visualizing your dreams for long enough. Eventually those dreams become your destiny and that destiny morphs into a reality. Maroon Bell Outdoor is what is possible.
FIRST PRODUCT YOU CREATED?
Our first product was a 70% Bamboo T-shirt with our logo on it. My uncle was in town that night and the whole family was at my parent’s house for dinner. After dinner we all put the shirts on and played pool. It was a pretty exciting night for me.
HOW (OR, HAS) YOUR PROCESS EVOLVED?
Every single process has evolved. I started from scratch and didn’t know anything about this business. I was spending money blindly because I didn’t know what I needed or how I needed it. Every single thing was brand new for me and every day I learned something else. I barely knew what a success or failure looked like. Now I am actually analyzing data and making strategic business decisions. I can see over six months what good decisions looked like and what bad ones looked like so I can map out a more effective process in the future. What is interesting about this evolution is that today, even after everything I have learned, the company is in a brand new space so in this place I am at ground zero again. You have to constantly learn and do everything you can to make good decisions by using your past actions as a guide. Sometimes I feel like I am playing chess and every day the rules change so I have to figure out what those new rules are.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE PRODUCT OR COLLECTION YOU'VE CREATED?
For sure the Campfire Flannel. We worked on that for almost 11 months and my neutral opinion is that its perfect. I shops a lot and love clothes and I wear this flannel every day. The fit, color and structure of this garment is incredible. On top of that it has intricate findings and leather patches around it. This was one of the first things I had ever created from nothing and it was a really incredible feeling opening up the box for the first time.
WHY DO YOU DO WHAT YOU DO?
First off I never wanted to work for someone else forever. Secondly, I believe we all have a piece of gold inside of us that if exploited will make us the greatest there ever was in our own right. The trick in life is finding out what that is for you. Everyone is different and everyone’s piece of gold is different. I set out years ago to try and find this gold, try to achieve my own greatest potential. Sometimes you have to look in odd places, or climb deeper into the crevice as they say. I got a degree in accounting and was a financial analyst when I decided to start Maroon Bell Outdoor. A lot of people thought it was nuts but I love fashion and followed my gut instinct. I am doing this because I love it, I am passionate about it, and for this time and place it is my journey to achieve my greatest potential.
WHAT'S THE BEST PART OF YOUR DAY
I have a lot of best parts of days but one in particular is on Thursdays; my wife and I work out at Orange Theory at 5am. The best part is at 6:30 am, after I get home, take a shower and sit at my desk with a cup of coffee and read the front page of Google news. It’s a really incredible feeling.
BEST PART ABOUT BEING A COLORADO MAKER?
Colorado is the cool place to be in the country right now and our city is achieving its greatest potential. I feel like so many folks want to be from here and I am. There is a certain pride and ownership I feel for Colorado because of the fact that I was here before all of the excitement. I feel like Colorado is one of my family members or a best friend. I am so proud of it for achieving so much! Having said all of that, being an entrepreneur in Colorado is almost as brand new as the new phase of the city. I go to these events around the state and I see so many young entrepreneurs. Sometimes I feel like we are pioneers just starting out with a brand new city. We will always be the first ones in the new lights of the future Denver.
ON THE DENVER FLEA WISH LIST:
The new tri-blend red Maroon Bell t-shirt to add some color under our black North Face puffer jackets!
QUICK FACT #2
After I set up the company I had no idea how to start a fashion line - one day I was talking to my barber about the company and he connected me with a former Ralph Lauren designer, who stemmed to four other connections that led to the designer I'm working for today.
QUICK FACT #3
Last summer I started a T-shirt company called Peak Shirts so that I could learn about supply chain as well as how to run an e-commerce business. We made $5 the entire summer.