After the grand jury verdict in Ferguson, MO, many have participated in #BlackOutFriday, an economic protest to show that black dollars, which make up about $1 trillion of the country’s revenue, isn’t worth more than black lives.
We’re past #BlackOutFriday, but the protests aren’t over. Today is Cyber Monday, so there’s #CrashCyberMonday and after that is the long-haul hashtag #BlackOutEveryday. Yes. Everyday. Remember how long the Montgomery Bus Boycott was? It took 13 months.
Several sites, including Afrobella, Fly Girl Blog, Black Owned Businesses and The Huffington Post have posted links to site owned by black business owners. Since we’re in the heart of the holiday shopping season, I’m taking a look at the sites suggested and I’ll give you my recommendations for sites that are great for everyone on your gift list. First up are five sites for the men in your life.
Mo’s Bows is a Memphis, TN-based bowtie company started Moziah Bridges when he was just nine years old. The company started when Bridges, who couldn’t find bow ties that fit his style, asked his grandmother to teach him how to sew. Using his grandmother’s scrap fabric, he made and sold his first bow ties. Mo’s Bows has been featured on Shark Tank and outlets such as The Huffington Post, MSNBC, The Steve Harvey Show, O Magazine and many others. Apart from bow ties, Mo’s Bows also sells pocket squares and T-shirts.
Price point: $49-$850
The Brooklyn Circus is a new-wave all-American heritage brand seeking to reinvent the styles of the past. The menswear line includes varsity jackets, sweaters, cardigans, footwear, bow ties, hats, pins, and more. If the man in your life likes cooking, The Brooklyn Circus even has several specialty knives to choose from.
Price point: $65-$75
William + James is another brand aiming for heritage brand longevity. The menswear brand features tailored button-up shirts, jackets, cardigans and blazers named after black trailblazers like Langston Hughes and Marcus Garvey. The company’s name itself comes from historian and civil rights activist William Edward Burgdhart DuBois (W.E.B. is how we know his first name) and novelist/playwright/esssayist/social activist and civil rights icon James Baldwin.
Price point: $17-$30
You might know Blk Proverbs from its hilarious Tumblr page featuring sayings you or family members might have used growing up. But Blk Proverbs is also an online fashion store with a message (pun intended). The shirts feature sayings that are playful, like “Girl bye” as well as more serious statements, like “Can I Live?” and “Black Lives Matter.” Even though Blk Proverbs is featured in this male-centric post, the shirts, hoodies and wristbands are actually unisex.
Price point: $25-$50
Just Be Dope, also a unisex brand, features unique beanies, paisley bucket hats, and studded backpacks. If the man you’re buying for is an accessories fiend, they just might love having one of Just Be Dope’s backpacks slung over their shoulder or a hat that separates them from the pack.
There are, of course, more sites than just these you can shop from. Take a look at the links listed at all of the sites listed above to start your virtual shopping.