Ribbon Wear Company was created in November of 2005 by husband and wife team, Stephanie and Richard Roldan in Germantown, MD, a suburb of Washington D.C. It was formed as a division of Focal Element, Inc., a company owned and operated by Rich. Ribbon Wear Company is primarily a web based business, though Rich and Steph also participate in local community events as part of their passion for the business.
A personal story
Over the period of a year, we receive countless mailers with donation requests that include pads of paper, pens, and labels, all with the hope that we donate money in return. We often receive phone calls in the evenings from solicitors asking for charitable donations. As far as we know, all of these approaches work at getting us to donate our money since we are bombarded every year with these solicitations.
For us, the missing part was that we could never show we had donated. We didn’t get any feedback, except that we noticed we were constantly being added to more charity databases. It’s not that we needed the recognition, but the continuous increases in requests made us want to show something in exchange for our contributions.
We are not any different from you, we always want to help those in need but we never felt the method to provide funds made sense. It’s like going on a field trip and returning home empty handed. We felt a contribution should be less wasteful, more recognizable, should be one which allows us to choose where our earned dollars would be donated to and should leave us with a good reminder of our good deed.
On a personal note, we needed a change. We wanted more than just a job that provided. We wanted a career that would benefit our family and friends, our environment and was good for society.
An Idea is born
What value would you give a shirt? What do you think its price should be? How much are you willing to pay to wear a popular name such as Polo, Izod or Tommy Hilfiger? Is image everything? Would you pay for this shirt and wear it occasionally or seldom, or would you prefer to pay for a shirt and get something back besides the shirt? Let’s say, good will?
We realized this is a way to show our contribution! We buy and wear clothes every day; why not have our clothes make a difference?
Brainstorming was fun. Rich wanted to create an apparel line of quality; Steph wanted to have a compelling line. Thinking about popularity and quality we both thought about a symbol easily recognizable and widely appealing. It was Steph who thought about the ‘ribbon’, a universal symbol of social and worldly consciousness.
That’s where the Ribbon Wear Company comes in. We wanted an apparel company that contributes to organizations that assist others, something for the greater good. Now the question was, where do we begin? We had no money. How could we start an apparel company without a store? Our first instinct was to forget it. And because of our situation we did just that, we allowed six months to pass without accomplishing anything towards an apparel business. Finally, we decided on a virtual, web based store. A store providing the highest quality apparel but with one ingredient that sets us apart from other apparel lines. All Ribbon Wear Company items are not any more expensive than what you expect to see at another site, and Ribbon Wear Products donates 10% of every sale to a cause selected by you.
Our business began in November 2005 as an idea. We set out to contact the world and spread our vision. In the end, we started slow with a small product line, but with a list that is continuously growing. We offer shirts, jackets and hats. But remember it means something more than a shirt or jacket when you buy through us. This apparel means something good. Not only does it look good on you, but it’s a product that helps those in need. You can feel great about your purchase because it is your apparel, your design, your cause - you are making a difference!
We will leave you now to check out our site, we hope you enjoy your stay and contact us whenever you like.
Steph and Rich Roldan