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Thursday, May 10, 2012

My new visor and some Q&A with State Traditions

As I wrote in an earlier post, I ordered and received a new visor from State Traditions.  The entire process, especially their communication and shipping speed, was flawless. 

First off, here's the visor:




I'm really pleased with the quality of the visor.  100% cotton and well-constructed. Not thin or flimsy - very well made. What more can you say about a visor?  Well, for starters it has a great logo and it's made right here in the USA!  It's very comfortable, with the adjustable strap providing enough width for an adult head of even the largest diameter. As you can see from the picture, it has a stainless buckle, not velcro, which is something I prefer.  I washed it twice (in a hat washing cage) and not even so much as a frayed string or a blurred color!

When I find a company I like, I generally want to know more about them and State Traditions is no exception.  After I received the visor I reached out to Maury at ST with a few questions that he was gracious enough to answer:

Q: So what made you decide to start State Traditions?
A: We started State Traditions because we wanted to provide customers apparel and accessories with imagery they already have a deep seeded connection with. Different from other lifestyle brands, we wanted to produce classic, quality products for people wanting to show their state pride and look good doing it. Our state flag “Traditional” logos started with Alabama and grew from there. 

Q: What was more important first, the products or that they were made in America?
A: To be honest, the products and the imagery were first. The reason for that is, in the beginning we weren’t able to leverage purchasing to get American made products and be able run a sustainable business. Now, we are better positioned to provide high quality products, and try whenever possible to have these made in these United States. 

Q: How much have your products changed over time? What drove those changes?
A: It really depends.  Some products that have been popular have stayed very similar for a long time.  Some we've refined and some are new.  There's always opportunity to develop a new product to offer our customers, and we strive to do that.  But any products we release will always reflect our initial mission of providing the highest quality products to highlight the pride in one’s state. Staying true to this mission is part of our brand identity. 

Q: Do you find that State Traditions has a following only in the southeast or have the products done well across the country?
A: We’ve been very fortunate to have a great following across the country, but starting in the South, naturally that’s where we’re most popular.     

Q: Do you feel that ST is identified as a southern brand?
A: I believe that State Traditions has been identified as a southern brand to date but that is because our product offering have been geared toward the southern states.  By no means are we limited to the south or plan to offer products geared toward the south alone.      

Q: What can you tell me about the process of making of ST products that makes them unique? 
A: Most apparel brands have one singular image they create as their logo and put it on everything.  We don't.  We have images for each state, multiple images for each state even.  But juggling as many images as we have on a variety of products, all while maintaining consistent branding, and efficient processing, is what we do and we think makes us very unique in our market.   

Q: As an American clothing manufacturer, how do you view the future of American clothing manufacturing?
A: Unfortunately, the additional cost that comes with manufacturing in America is difficult to balance when you're trying to create a sustainable business model.  For American manufacturing to have any chance of gaining traction there is going to need to be more American clothing manufacturers to create more competition which will allow the pricing to be more competitive.  

Q: Do you plan on adding to your lineup anytime soon and what can we look forward to from ST in the future?
A: ST has big plans for our lineup and we look forward to revealing each of our new items as they are ready for release.  There will be something for everyone in the ST lineup in the near future.

Thanks again to State Traditions for answering my questions and I certainly hope this helps readers understand the company and the brand a bit more.  Personally speaking, I will be ordering some additional visors and a polo.  I had a chance to see the polos in a store here in GA and they're very nice.  You can find their website at http://www.statetraditions.com/ or follow them on Twitter: @StateTraditions

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