The idea for PINAY Clothing was born in October 1995 at a Filipino event in Los Angeles, CA (FPAC - Festival of Pilipino Arts and Culture to be exact). I was at a friend’s booth who was selling “pinoy”-inspired shirts at the time and I politely suggested he should also make “pinay” shirts. After some (possible annoying?) pestering he finally suggested that I should just make/sell PINAY shirts myself.
Although my initial decision to sell shirts was born out of my need to wear said item, it became more than that. My business partner and I followed festivals, so we got a chance to travel and meet fellow Fil-Ams from around the country. In many of those events, many told me how wearing a PINAY t-shirt (along with other Filipino themed/branded gear that existed at the time) was a simple yet strong way for them to represent their pride through fashion. I noticed it was extra special for those who lived in areas that had little Filipino representation.
After I graduated college (hello, LMU), I let PINAY taper off into non-existence. I decided to follow other passions, including working with young people. By sheer luck I found a job that brought my love of business and helping kids together; as Assistant Director for an entrepreneurship program run by students at Crenshaw High School (Food from the Hood). It was and still is one of the most gratifying experiences of my life.
I’m bringing back PINAY because I'd like to do my part in highlighting our beautiful and complex P/Filipino/a/x culture. This time around, I plan to mix business with social responsibility and use this as a vessel to give back to my/our community.
Pinay Clothing is not just about t-shirts or apparel to me. It never was. All I ever wanted to do was show people how proud I was/am of being a Pinay. That's how I felt in 1995 and how I feel now.
I'm ecstatic about PINAY's new chapter and the things coming up.
Thank you for your support!
- Haydee Vicedo