Made in the USA

While visiting my hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, during the first few weeks of summer break, I was so pleased to be introduced to the talented design duo of Sean Bilovecky (formerly of Wrath Arcane), and Dana Hardy. Sean and business partner Danielle DeBoe recently opened their new shop and clothing line, Dredgers Union and anyone visiting the city must put this on your shopping list.

Dredgers Union, the name of their private label and boutique, transformed an old department store from rubble into a charming historic storefront on E. 4th Street. This area of downtown is closed to auto traffic, and is lined with cafes, restaurants and retail. You will find The House of Blues, an outpost of my favorite Vietnamese restaurant Saigon, and a pretty famous spot Lola, home to Iron Chef Michael Symon.

Sean Bilovecky, a graduate of Kent State University’s fashion design program, has been working, in Cleveland, on design and production of menswear for over 5 years. From his design studio in the lower level, Sean and his team were working on the pocket and seam details of a Fall 2011 jacket the day I visited. The fit is exceptional. He offers a full men’s collection of well tailored shirts, suits under $400, and a great mix of knits and wovens.

Women’s wovens will incorporate the same silhouette each season, in both a fitted and boyfriend cut. I tried on three different shirts pictured here, and the tissue light fabrics won me over in part with casual roll-up sleeves. All of the dresses are classically styled, investment pieces. I can see wearing them layered, and changing the style of the dress to fit for work, going out or special events. At only $89 it’s an easy investment to make with the basic colors and fine fit. Dana Hardy, women’s designer, graduated from the textiles program at The Cleveland Institute of Art.

And before I forget, 100% of the private label Dredgers Union is crafted in the neighboring Midwest city, Chicago, Illinois. Sean emphasized the core values of the brand, are having the ability to design, make and sell things close to home. A refreshing and affordable concept, very exciting to see things in progress outside a major metro area in the US. While everything is available only in their store in Ohio, I have no doubts that this will be a brand to watch and wear for years to come. I look forward to a return for their Fall Collection, best of luck to the wonderful team at Dredgers Union!