For The Culture Clothing. Made by Jessica Boakye and Marie Smith for .....
For The Culture was created by Marie Smith, and myself. It was started in 2017 at the African American Heritage club at Bishop George Ahr High-school. The summer going into my senior year of high school, I decided I wanted to accomplish something big to leave my mark. I
intended on leaving my mark by changing the perception of others about the club- that we were not just a name, but an embodiment of talents, commitment, and diversified uniqueness.
I had promised the members of my club that our voices would be heard. As Margaret Mead famously said, “'Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Although I believe a few people could make a difference, I needed a way for us to advertise ourselves, so I decided the best way to accomplish this was by having a T-shirt made to spread the word about the club and black people as a whole. I got the inspiration to make the shirts from a Tom Williamson's "Rise and Thrive" videos on getting up in the morning and changing the world one day at a time.
I made three attempts to get shirt approved by the principal and she denied the first two claiming they were "too offensive" to some people. It wasn't until the "for the culture" design with the quote on the back that she approved it. With a few bumps in the road, we were still able to get the shirts made and sold. The first order arrived October 27, 2017. These shirts were created as a symbol of black pride. They remind people of color and the rest of the world that being black isn't a badge of shame rather a sense of pride.