1,000 COSIGN’s: Meet Ransford, Founder of Icyy Brand | COSIGN #155 of 1K
As cliche as it may sound, who is Ransford Nyamaah?
Ranz is a creative from Arlington Texas
What made you create Icyy Brand? What void did you see in the market that you wanted to fill?
Icyy was created to fill a void in my life to be honest. I needed an outlet to express myself creatively. I created Icyy for myself If people liked It or not I knew Id be fulfilled in what I was doing.
Tell us how you started Icyy Brand? What was the first design? How much did it cost you to launch? How many shirts did you print? How many did you sell? Tell us the story.
Icyy was an idea I had in my notebook back in 2018. I started out with the minimum the print shop would allow which was 30 pieces. I made the Icyy Logo tee with the bolt design on the back. One black and one white. I believe I charged 25 dollars a shirt then. To my surprise I sold out very quickly, maybe within three weeks. At that moment I knew I had something on my hands. I was very nervous in the beginning stages because I didn’t want to mess up. As time went on, I remain consistent and that gave me more confidence to continue to do what I have been doing. I manifested Icyy to where it is today, and we not done yet.
Where does the name Icyy derive from?
Icyy is an adjective used to describe someone appearance. Normally when you see someone who is Icyy they stand out of the crowd; they are unique and they express their true self through their appearance/fashion. This is what I want Icyy to embody.
Your tag line is “Creative self-expression at the highest level.” What does this look like for you?
Creative self-expression at the highest level looks like an individual who creatively, unapologetically themselves They aren’t influence by what the masses are doing, they move to beat of their own drum.
Some would say, fashion is art. What art were you intrigued with growing up? Who/what were you wearing and why?
I was heavily influenced/intrigued by people like Pharrel Williams & Kanye West growing up. Their style was so unique and true to Themselves. Also my brother, when I was in middle school I us to think all his gear was so fresh to me. I remember I use to steal clothes out his closet to wear to school, he hated that. Now he wearing/buying my clothes (full circle). They all had style that I wanted to emulate but with my own twist.
When I was younger I would wear: Miskeen, LRG, Evisu, Artful Dodger, Ralph Lauren, Billionaire boys club, Stussy, 10 deep and when I got a lil older CDG Play
What’s been the hardest aspect of building a fashion business?
Once I actually got started, I slowly realized that I couldn’t just make designs like I wanted. I had to learn things I didn’t want to like photography, graphic design, marketing, social media, modeling, I had to educate myself on clothing manufactures all while trying to the think of ways of how to put my vision on a shirt. I took multiple L’s in the beginning, in silence, which was tough but I turned those experiences into lessons for the next time.
How do you continue to learn and grow as an entrepreneur in the fashion industry?
I try to surround myself with people that I can learn from, people that motivate and inspire me. I ask questions all the time from people that are willing to help. I also search for useful information and resources, whether that be from social media or business partners
Who would you like to see wearing your brand and why?
A Dallas Cowboy (Zeke or CeeDee) or Dallas Maverick (Luka or Tim Hardaway jr). These are some of my favorite players. It would be a surreal moment for me to see them wear something that I created. I believe it’ll be a great look for the brand.
Who was the first person to #COSIGN your brand? And why was this important to you?
The first person that COSIGN my brand that was the most beneficial I would say was Rich at Xpress customs print shop (He may not remember this). He was the first person that told me that my designs were Icyy that wasn’t a family member. That gave me some early confidence. He also gave me a lot of gems on the business side. Since he was running a print shop, he probably worked with hundreds of clothing brands and saw where there was some area for improvement and gave me info willingly.
What piece of advice would you want to tell the next person who wants to start a fashion line?
Despite the doubts that person may be having internally about their brand, just start the business. Mistakes and Ls are part of this, take them on the chin and learn from them. Stay consistent.
Last but not least, who are 3 people in the fashion industry you #COSIGN.
BeBlessed – @beblessedshop
Elyon – @elyon.co
KeepGoing – @keepgoingstudio