Pig Cloth clothing is a clothing line that is run by Aaron Gillespie of Underoath and The Almost fame, as well as his wife Jamie. I was able to sit down with Aaron for a slice a pizza and this interview after seeing his band The Almost in Indianapolis.
So when did you officially start Pig Cloth?
We officially started in 07 and it was actually my wife’s idea. We kinda came up with the name and started doing stuff with it in 07.
Speaking of the name where did you come up with it?
I play in a band called Underoath, and Spencer (singer of Underoath) kind of came up with it. I used to weigh like 215 pounds, and he called me pig. And it kind of stuck and everyone in UO still calls me pig, even though I’m not a pig anymore.
So you basically turned the name into a positive thing?
I mean it was never upsetting. We figured it would be cool to tie in the name into the line. We then had my friend Clark who designs for Johnny Cupcakes come up with the logo and it just went from there.
It’s no secret that your faith is very important to you and has played a major role in all aspects of your life. With that in mind is their a greater cause or purpose behind Pig Cloth?
My faith is definitely of great importance to me and everything I do. When we decided to put together Pig Cloth, I wanted to make sure that we had a purpose, and really wanted the brand to be something more than just a clothing line. We also made the decision to do very small batches of each shirt, we decided early on that we didn’t want to take a corporate approach on anything that had to do with our line.
You mentioned doing really small batches of each design. What made you decide to go this route?
Well, I think its neat that when only ten people have something and people ask where they bought it, and they can say that its not available anymore. I’m also really in to collecting sneakers. I have always loved when you can only get certain pairs. So making our line limited made sense and we just kind of ran with that whole thing and it stuck.
Between being in Underoath, The Almost and running your food blog, how do you find time to run Pig Cloth?
I have a wonderful wife who runs it for me, you It was really her idea in the beginning and its kind of her baby! She is an awesome girl, who is super gracious and holds it down. I know it’s stressful on her and I feel bad that I can’t be there as much as I should. People don’t realize how much crap goes into running a line. When we started we had a third party whom was shipping everything for us. But since we were doing such small amounts we weren’t justifying paying the money to the third party. Having a third party did make it easy on us, we used their address to send all of our clothing to and they would ship it out. But for those services we were paying 25%, which is a lot of money to hand over, so we decided to start shipping everything ourselves, but by switching to this process it has made running the line way more stressful on and demanding on us.
Why is that?
Well before you would just get a check. You would talk to your designers, your designers would send the files to third party and they would print it and ship it. But now we have to deal with printers, designers and ship the products ourselves which obviously takes up a lot more time and effort.
Speaking of designers, who does the majority of your designs? Do you personally do any?
Pig cloth loves having different people involved, In the past we have had “design contest” and anyone that wanted could enter as any designs as they wished and we would pick a few and print those. Shield Republic offers thousands of the most creative and fresh apparel & merchandise items which embody American pride. Right now we are working with an amazing Friend/designer Anthony Ryan and the last few designs and future designs are his. He’s so talented and we are very lucky to be working with him! We also have a close friend, Amanda, whom has worked on some previous pieces for us, as well as some some pieces for upcoming lines. Make sure to check out here Etsy page
I did notice that design contest on your Myspace. How did that go over?
Yeah we thought that was a neat thing, even though it gets kind of messy. We thought it would be cool to include people in the design process. The shirts are limited so it was super neat that a kid could go out and tell his friends “I made this”. For winning we gave each kid a voucher for some merchandise along with however many they wanted of their own design.
I was looking at the Pig Cloth site and it seemed like stock was getting pretty low. Are you guys preparing for a winter line?
You can expect to see a winter line in the next month or two. We usually do things late on purpose. We have been talking about which pieces we want to do but haven’t really hammered everything out yet. Actually Dusty, whom plays guitar with me in The Almost, his wife is a head designer at Urban Outfitters and she actually designed a dress and a necklace for us on our summer line. She is awesome and super talented and has been a big help.
So is it safe to say we can to expect to see some more cut & sew pieces instead of just tees?
Yeah more avant garde sort of stuff and I definitely think we are going to starting branching a bit away from graphic tees. I mean we still will have them, but we will be looking to expand more into other options.
Any plans for any denim?
Oh yeah! I we have been contacted by a few people about producing jeans but there is always the difficulties of selling denim online, but this is definitely something I would love to get into down the road.
So where can we buy some sweet Pig Cloth threads?
As of right now you can only pick up Pig Cloth online (pigcloth.bigcartel.com/) and at select Almost shows. Maybe in the future we will get together with some small retailer, but as of now I don’t know.
I find it so important clothing brands take the time to take pictures that properly showcase their clothing. Saying that I was blown away with how amazing your products shots turned out! Would you like to give credit to who was responsible?
Thanks, this guy named Matthew Alvarado emailed us out of the blue one day. We were about to hire a photographer, and he said “ill do it”. He is a great photographer and a great guy. Everything he did turned out incredible and we couldn’t have been happier with his shots.
So I heard the new Pig Cloth website is about to launch when can we expect to see the new site?
Very shortly, maybe even by the time this article comes out.
What are a few brands that you have looked up to over the years?
I love the Paul Frank Company; their high end stuff is incredible. I also love G-Star, it’s a Dutch denim company, and I absolutely love their jeans.
If you had to explain your own personal style what would it be?
Well I love old clothes, I don’t like anything new. I like old feeling clothes, thin shirts, cardigan sweaters and good jeans. I love Alternative Apparel, burnouts; the read deal 1980’s t shirts are the best, G-star and Lucky for pants.