Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in clothing but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Murphy Paschall, Founder and CEO of Black Paper StreetWear, located in Baltimore, MD, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Black Paper Streetwear is a clothing brand that brings attention to the spending power of African Americans. Our customers are streetwear enthusiasts between the ages of 15 - 35 years of age.
Tell us about yourself
Growing up in Baltimore city, I saw my fair share of the urban plight and how it affects the people that live in certain environments. With a burning desire to get involved in community activism, I joined a group of high school friends to create a 'rights of passage' program to provide manhood training for African American males. After having sons of my own, I joined the Baltimore city police department as a way to provide for my family and serve as a role model for other young black males. During this time, I also became involved in youth sports, coaching football and baseball teams.
After an eight-year stint on the police force, I decided to dive headfirst into my first passion, which has always been business. Attempting to combine my love for business and my desire to uplift people in my community, I created Black Paper streetwear.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I have a partnership with Shoe City stores in Baltimore, where we carry Black Paper streetwear in six different locations. In my spare time, I love to teach young African American students how to create their own clothing businesses that they can operate directly on their cell phones. My next venture is to formulate a structured program called T-Shirt University LLC in an effort to teach future groups of students. I plan to partner with Omar Muhammad (EDAC) of Morgan State University to make this happen.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
Raising funds to operate the daily responsibilities of operating a clothing business. Constantly receiving a request for gifting garments has a cost all within itself.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
First and foremost ... Start. Most people keep waiting for the right time to start a business; my suggestion is to start where you are right now. Don't take it personally when family and friends don't support your brand. Thirdly, learn to enjoy the journey. Getting to your dream goals takes time and perseverance.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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