After several months of relying solely on online sales due to coronavirus, Detroit-based luxury streetwear company The Wealthy Brand is eager to open its doors for what owners Kuddles Hopkins and Rashad Hosea are billing as a relaunch and reimagining.
“We have to do a lot more work ourselves now,” Hosea says. “It's been tough, but we made it through.”
Started in 2016, the brand originally went by the name Mentally Wealthy, but is now known for its signature emblematic “WEALTHY” graphic that runs across their selection of T-shirts, sweatshirts, and athletic gear. Upon first glance, the branding might call to mind skateboard-turned-Hypebeast bro brand Supreme, but the homegrown streetwear company says Wealthy has a deeper mission to promote the idea of generating generational wealth within Black communities.
“With our brand, we try to make it the people's brand,” Hosea says. “Like, when people think of wealth, they think of money, but I think of legacy. I think of passing knowledge. I think of helping the community, inspiring the community. There are people that look up at us. We try to change the narrative for real on how people view young Black men from Detroit.”
Wealthy first opened its 1,000 square-foot Oak Park brick-and-mortar in 2018. Hosea says they have more support now than they did when they first opened, due in part to the growth in popularity of the brand online, adding he's certain they've shipped Wealthy gear to nearly all 50 states, as well as throughout Canada. The week of its reopening, the brand's Instagram account surpassed 30,000 followers.
“Of course I want it to grow as a quality clothing brand, but I want Wealthy to grow just as a brand,” Hosea says. “We're more than just fashion, we're into art, music, and into the community.”
He views his mentorship as being an obligation, which stemmed from not having a lot of influences outside of his household that put energy into guiding him. Hosea is also the first entrepreneur in his family, and wants to start his family on the path to generational wealth, citing inspiration from Hollywood's Wayans family. He and Hopkins also hope to start a Wealthy scholarship program, “even if it starts with just two or three kids,” with dreams of getting Wealthy gear on the backs of Jay-Z, Meek Mill, or Lil Baby.
“I have a son, so I try and teach him as I'm going,” Hosea says. “He's seen it all. I had to prove to my son that this was going to work. That's what we've done.”
Wealthy's flagship store will celebrate its reopening Saturday, June 20 through Sunday, June 21 starting at noon.
The Wealthy Brand store is located at 8126 W. Nine Mile Road, Oak Park.
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