Back in 2018 I was off sick from work for the best part of 2 months which of course gave me an awful lot of time to think. Like properly ill to the point I had to see a Professor who eventually signed me off in February 2020, then of course a global pandemic hit the next month.
Anyway back to 2018. Early in that year a thought popped into my head about starting a basketball clothing brand, thoughts like this were always appearing in my mind but this was one I couldn’t stop thinking about for days at a time. I’d always wanted something I could call mine and thoughts like these would always pop into my head but never last more than half a day. One idea for example was starting Gym clothing, I enjoy weightlifting but don’t know it and love it like I do basketball so would have eventually been outed as an amateur by a load of Bro’s.
For the first time ever I started to jot down my ideas and the more I wrote, the more ideas were filling the page, to the point I would become overwhelmed. So to make things easier I did one small job at a time, the first was coming up with a name.
The first name was Basketball Connection, the reason for this initial idea was I wanted the brand name to connect players up & down the country. Although the ethos was set I felt the name lacked imagination so thought I’d go with something that represented me as a basketball player so the next name in line was Chain Net. I remember when I started to go to College Park in Portsmouth and they had chain nets on the hoop and I honestly couldn’t believe it, I’d seen these in films as a kid but never thought I’d be able to play on one.
So I decided Chain Net would be the name but felt by adding ‘Apparel’ it would be better recognised as a basketball clothing company.
Next job was designing a logo. I didn’t have any budget to hire somebody so I knocked something up on Canva and managed to find a production company online who sent me my first mock up and it looked horrible which was nothing on them but based on the logo I sent them so I amended and we had something respectful enough that we could print.
To cover the cost of the first batch of t-shirts I received a refund from a holiday I wasn’t able to attend due to being long term sick and I also sold some unwanted stuff on Ebay. At this point I hadn’t uttered a word to anyone close to me in case it failed and if it did, nobody would know also I wouldn’t have used my wages to fund so win win, kind of.
Bear in mind everything up to this point was completely outside of my comfort zone but where I believed in my idea so much I just kept going.
Whilst the t-shirts were in production I didn’t do much as I was just waiting for the tees to arrive before taking photos etc however one day during this period I found something out that I should’ve researched earlier and thoughts were racing round my head about quitting.
Part 2 soon.