“Clothing is one of the most clear manifestations of what a person believes in and what we were seeing was that people were consuming faux tattoo prints and empty conversations.”
– Ross Papa (Creative Director)
We are bombarded with countless messages, all competing for our attention – whether from billboards, commercials, or even the clothing we wear. In fact, we spend so much energy deciphering these messages, trying to embody them within ourselves, that we don’t even realize they lead to nothing but empty conversations.
It was only after interviewing Pen & Paper Apparel – a homegrown T-shirt company established here in
Vancouver – that I suddenly realized this crucial matter: Why are we allowing ourselves to be dictated by all these messages, rather than creating the messages ourselves? Why do we passively consume what the world tells us to consume, rather than contributing to the world instead?
That is what Pen & Paper Apparel propels towards: the transformation from being mere consumers to passionate contributors to our society. And frankly, after hearing what this clothing brand is all about, I can’t imagine a T-shirt company that better exemplifies what it means to be engaged citizens, both in product and in action.
Every T-shirt design of Pen & Paper Apparel aims for one thing: to provoke a thought, a question, or a conversation – a rebellion against the aimless images that contaminate our everyday clothing.
Hence, Pen & Paper Apparel not only stimulates us with challenging designs, but also purposely puts forth ambiguous messages, which allows the wearers to create their own interpretation of what the shirt really means. Such was the intent for P&P’s “Ignorance is Over” line.
In short, our clothing no longer defines us. We define our clothing.
Click here to view Pen & Paper Apparel products.
In addition to promoting citizenship through its products, Pen & Paper Apparel has also taken concrete action towards active citizenship, locally and internationally.
Locally, P&P supports the talent in Vancouver by holding concerts, attending galleries, and collaborating with many local artists, with the goal of promoting what Vancouver has to offer in terms of art, music, dance, architecture, and fashion.
P&P has also taken active participation internationally. For instance, P&P’s #projectJapan movement was established to help rebuild Japan after being hit by natural disasters several months ago. Not only was a new T-shirt launched to spread awareness of the issue (see picture above), but P&P also held a concert to fundraise money to support Japan.
Good news! Pen & Paper Apparel will be holding a concert on July 30 to celebrate local and international talent from both Vancouver and the United States. Check out their Facebook event page for all the information, including ticket price, location etc.
Also, feel free to order Pen & Paper Apparel shirts so that you too can support this new movement, a refreshing change from the lifeless messages of today’s fashion. P&P is also selling shirts at various local events, so make sure you check out their Facebook page for updates!
Remember, you have the power to define your clothing, so don’t let it define you. Together we can make this leap from passive consumption to engaged citizenship. Ignorance is over, if we want it to be.
Make sure you check out this video featuring siniGang dance crew rocking Pen & Paper Apparel #projectJapan T-shirts to spread awareness of the fundraising efforts for Japan.
Questions or comments are welcome. Enjoy!
By Celine Diaz