Two models pose in Creamy apparel.

Fashion pitch competition winner focuses on individuality, environmental friendliness

Alexis Eichelberger
February 11, 2019

A pair of brothers earned $1,000 in December by winning the Ohio University Center for Entrepreneurship’s fashion pitch competition with their vision for their innovative clothing brand, Creamy.

Creamy transforms thrift store clothing with unique designs. The brand was founded more than a year ago by Stephen Barrett, a senior studying retail merchandising and fashion product development, after he felt motivated to create a source of income by pursing a goal he felt passionately about –– a career in fashion. His brother Peter, a sophomore in the College of Fine Arts, soon joined in, helping Stephen create designs and paint them on T-shirts and hoodies. Many of the brothers’ OHIO classmates and friends are now part of the Creamy team. 

Stephen is unsure what set Creamy apart in the eyes of the pitch competition judges, but he believes it may have been his emphasis on both the individuality of each piece produced and the authentic from-the-ground-up nature of the business.

“We really just want it to be a collaborative environment and use the brand as a platform to help other people build their art careers,” he said. “I really tried to put a focus and emphasis on the brand being very unique or individual driven. Each piece we make, we’re never repeating that same design.”

With the pitch competition prize money, the Barretts plan to hire an environmentally conscious printer to produce their designs more quickly. The profits from sales will be invested back into the company, helping it to continue to grow.

Stephen and Peter’s long-term goals for the brand include turning their start-up into a full-time career. Currently, Creamy products are sold only online or to friends through word-of-mouth, but the brothers hope to own a storefront to sell their products in the future. 

The Barretts also hope to expand their brand to become a kind of artistic community that does more than simply sell clothing. They foresee Creamy evolving into a platform that showcases artwork, produces video content, hosts concerts and more.

“Just a place for people to collaborate and be creative,” Stephen said.