Two friends who went to high school together recently started a clothing company in North Dakota called ROAM Wear 701.
Blake Kaul and Callie Wachendorf have known each other for years and stayed in contact as both navigated through life. A few years ago, they each started their own business ventures.
Blake is a graphic designer and Callie makes and designs t-shirts for events and a few other things for Bismarck Hockey Club. They started collaborating on some projects and realized they could do more in the fashion industry to resonate with Midwesterners.
“A friend of mine approached me about doing a popup shop in the mall – when she first mentioned it, I thought she was crazy, but the more I got to think about it – it made sense to at least see what could happen with it,” said Wachendorf. “Blake was the first person I thought of; we hadn’t formally been in business together – but he was totally on board and excited, which almost scared me more. So, we started a spreadsheet of our ideas and put in the hours, and hours and hours. Blake and my husband, Jordan print in the third stall of our garage. “
At this point, in November of 2019, they were still just creating designs. Blake designed the mosaic bison the fashion line is centered around and they kept coming back to him. So they decided it would be wise to join forces and officially start a business.
At first, the pair struggled with the name – nothing was coming to mind easily.
After about 50 failed name combos, they both lit up with they hit on ROAM. It made sense: we were all born to roam.
“We felt it. It resonated with us. We felt it was something that our friends, our family, and people from the Midwest could feel that they are a part of. Blake took off with the designs from there,” said Wachendorf.
She says she spends a lot of time vetting different products and ensuring that they get the best feeling, highest quality product for our ROAM family.
“Blake, Jordan and I are very intentional about the product we want to deliver; we don’t order a finished product from other vendors and post it – we create our finished product. We truly feel that this is something bigger than just another website, and it is so cool to watch it grow and for the support, we have received from the community,” Wachendorf adds.
At this time, ROAM Wear 701 does not have a traditional “brick and mortar” store since they all work other jobs, but they’re not ruling anything out. When the right place comes along, it will be an easy transition for them.
Wachendorf adds, “We may need a bigger space to produce as we grow, so we often discuss options to satisfy that need. We do take orders outside of our efforts for ROAM. We love helping other businesses with quality apparel. We really don’t rule any event, business or idea out when it comes to printing. We really feel like the niche we bring to the printing and fashion market around here will go a long way. ”
In addition to the ROAM line, they offer youth ROAM and accessories.
The website will launch Thursday, March 19th at 12 noon.
For more info go here.