Thursday, June 30, 2011

Are We There Yet?

In August 2011, both of our companies will officially (legally) be 3 years old. In general, we started printing t-shirts in December 2005. Since we've been doing this for some time now, we tend to forget how much we've been growing. Sometimes it just feels like such a natural progression that we don't notice that our warehouses are getting larger, or that the amount of jobs we print are increasing, or that we are steadily becoming more and more efficient.

Don't get me wrong, there is no way we will EVER forget where we came from. When you own your own business, you remember everything. Every dollar. Every extra hour of work. Every sacrifice. Every leap of faith and calculated risk. Every failure and every success. Everything matters.

As we enter our last couple months in our current office, we can look back and appreciate the things that we've done. At the same time, we are also focused on what is to come and the next major frontier for ourselves. Each time we've moved, we've collectively become less nervous and more excited because we know what's at stake and we are becoming more and more confident in our abilities. We know we can succeed and we know we're getting closer and closer to that American dream. Our mindset is that the time is ALWAYS now. Our time has come.

After months of searching for the perfect new home for our businesses, it looks like we may have found it. Keep your fingers crossed!

- Vince

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

We Are The Music Makers

After being in a touring band for so many years, most of the people that I have stayed close with also happen to be musicians. Fortunately, a few of these people have continued doing what they love and are still making music for the rest of us to enjoy. Aside from the bigger bands that we work with, my closer personal friends have been keeping busy and staying creative as well. I'd like to introduce you to some good friends of mine.. locals only.

SILVER SNAKES - I'm incredibly proud of these guys. FINALLY! I've been telling Alex and Mike to make this thing a reality and for the past few months they've made it a commitment. Lo and behold, these guys now have a debut full-length record coming your way this summer called Pictures of a Floating World. Not sure how much more in detail I can release at this point, but it was recorded, produced, and will be released by good friends of ours as well. It's amazing when you are able to work with talented, like-minded individuals who also happen to be good friends of yours. Alex also records bands himself in LA so if you need to track some songs, check out his studio The Earth Capital. Bring vegan burritos.

They just posted a preview track from the album today, make sure you head over to their Facebook page to check it out. 'Like' them for upcoming tour dates and release details! I guarantee, this will be your new favorite rock band.

LESSONS - If you like your music fast and melodic, you'll probably like these guys and girl. Featuring another set of our friends who used to be in bands that we played shows with, this is a band that refuses to let go of the sounds that made us who we are today. For most of us, punk started it all and for these guys in this band, it just never left. I love watching these guys jam because they always look like they're having the best time ever. I've even jammed with them on a couple occasions and it always reminds me of the times when I first picked up the guitar and wanted to play as fast and loud as possible with my friends. Forever young.

To check out some demo songs, visit their Soundcloud page. Actually, they will be playing a show called Battle for Warped Tour tomorrow in Fullerton at the Continental Room. Come help us cheer them on!

KID FINISH - These guys have been in a band together longer than probably anyone I know in the local music scene. Russ has always been a machine when it comes to music, whether it's writing, recording, or producing. Fun facts - Russ and Bert actually won our annual beer pong tournament last year and now Russ and I are proud season ticket holders for the Los Angeles Kings.

They have a new record that is out now on iTunes called What You Break We Rebuild. You can also check out some of the songs on the record on their Soundcloud page.

ROYAL PIRATES - James Lee. All I can say is I TOLD YOU SO. I've been telling James to become a Korean pop star for YEARS now and look what he did. Finally listened to ol' Vince's advise and went and became a K-POP star. Now I'm not sure if he really is a K-POP star yet since I'm obviously not familiar with that scene at all, but it looks like his new band is doing pretty well for themselves both domestically in the USA and overseas. I always believed that James had the voice, the look, and the overall package to make it big and I'm glad he's putting it all to use. It always makes me happy to see my friends doing what they love, especially when it becomes a living for some of them. Good luck out there, buddy! Keep seizing those days!

They have a show coming up next week on Thursday July 7th at The Mint in Los Angeles. Make sure to come check it out before they leave overseas again!

And those are my friends. Hope you enjoy their music as much as we do! Support the independents. Support D.I.Y. Support the locals. Support the true and passionate lovers of music.

".. and we are the dreamers of dreams."

- Vince

Friday, June 24, 2011

L&O Summer Duffel Bag PRE-ORDER

Need a new duffel bag for those trips to the beach this Summer? We've got you covered! For a limited time only, the L&O Summer Duffel Bag will be available to pre-order. These bags will be "made-to-order" so we won't make it 'til you order it! 100% bull denim woven cotton featuring matching zipper closure, side zipper pocket, and dual handles. The bag is 22" x 10.5" and features our L&O Box Logo on both sides with the Exclamations logo on one end and our garment label on the other.

Only available for pre-order from June 24th - July 1st!

We also threw in discounted COMBO packages for those of you who are looking for the most bang for your buck! Visit the ONLINE SHOP now and find out for yourself!

Only available for ONE WEEK! Don't miss out on this one-of-a-kind L&O item!

- Vince

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Warped Tour Collaborations

Starting tomorrow Friday June 24th, both of these collaboration projects will be available at all Warped Tour dates this summer! Both bands will have their collab t-shirt available for purchase at their respective merchandise booths. These colorways are available ONLY on Warped Tour directly from the bands so if you're going, you better take advantage!


With a new single about to drop from their recent full-length album "Against the World", we thought it was only appropriate to pay homage to the place we call home for this collaborative project. We've known the Winds of Plague guys for years since we were both very much involved in the local Southern California independent music scene. We went on to pursue business yet they kept grinding out the metal circuit. Now they're wreaking havoc on national levels like joining the Warped Tour roster.

Since band merch all looks pretty much the same lately, we wanted to take this project down another road. While still combining the darkness of a metal t-shirt and our brand's own aesthetic, we wanted to mimic the look of a California coast greetings card. In order to keep that feeling of doom that WOP is so synonymous for, this cheerful beach scene is actually in for a rude awakening with the approaching asteroid fireball on the horizon. Johnny Plague's lyrics read, "No matter where I go. No matter where I stay. I always come back. California." A fitting motto for any Californian.

Back of the shirt features both logos with another lyric from the record, "Me and you against the world," to signify our joint effort. For those of you paying attention, there's also a Cali-style Exclamations logo as well. Details, people. Details.

Lastly, Century Media Records was kind enough to offer a special link to download a FREE Summer Sampler including songs from several bands on their roster. You can find the link and password on the inside of the t-shirt when you purchase at Warped Tour!


Don't call him Vince. Really though, don't do it. He hates it. He hates everything, which made him the perfect focal point for our first collab project with The Acacia Strain. The infamous vocalist is known for his misanthropic lyrics and as the face of one of the heaviest bands to come out of the American independent music scene.

When Brian and I came up with the concept for this t-shirt, I literally texted Vincent and told him to send me a photo of him wearing our L&O Box Logo tee and I specifically told him to make THAT face. I guess we were all on the same page because when he sent the photo over to us, it was exactly what we were looking for. I love the fact that he's making this face yet performs in one of the most evil bands you can imagine. It's just one of those juxtapositions that shouldn't be ignored so I'm glad we went through with it. You may recognize the background from our Brick By Brick tee. This brick wall is an actual brick wall on our warehouse building, and not from Google. Also, there's a couple other L&O details that you should be able to pin-point pretty easily.

Deep down, we've all got a little hypebeast in us. This t-shirt is an ode to that with the classic black-and-white photo on the front of a familiar face, in this case Vincent Bennett. The back of the tee features Vincent's lyrics, "We are the reason there is blood on the ground," hand written by our very own Brian Obnoxious. NEVER DEAD PIT BEAST CREW.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that we officially did collaborations with the two heaviest bands to ever grace the stages of the legendary Warped Tour. In my opinion, that's pretty rad.

- Vince
(T-Shirt designs by Sean Martin)
(Hand writings by Brian Kim)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


ATTN: All aspiring photographers of the world!

Now is your time to shine! Summer is here and L&O is looking for some creative photographers to help us finish our Summer 2011 collection! Since we are a Southern California based brand, we will be following a "beach" related theme and we want YOU to submit the last design for our line sheet. The contest is simple- we are looking for a photograph that combines both the "beach" theme and L&O at the same time. You could draw our logo in the sand, capture a sunset, or invite your sexy girlfriend to sunbathe. Whatever you do, just be as creative and artistic as you can. Who knows, maybe your photo will end up on our screen printing press!

Only accepting submissions from June 22nd to June 29th so hurry!

Black-and-white or color photos are welcome.
High resolution (300 pixels/inch).
Original work only please.

The owner of the winning photo will receive the entire L&O Summer 2011 collection! Not to mention, bragging rights for your photo becoming a t-shirt design!

Please email all submissions to with subject "L&O SUMMER PHOTO CONTEST".

If you need help coming up with ideas, here are some keywords, phrases, ideas, and random props to get you started:
- L&O
- D.I.Y. Mentality
- Never Dead
- Bangers Only
- sand
- bikini
- palm trees
- surf
- skate
- pier
- boardwalk
- beer
- bonfire

Like we mentioned above, just be creative. Feel free to also "keep it simple". We like creativity, but we also like clean and simple. The photo doesn't literally have to contain any L&O in it but as long as it encapsulates a feeling that you think our brand might convey, that's up to you. If you can manage to fit L&O into it somehow, that might help.

Good luck, have fun, and game on!

- Vince

Monday, June 20, 2011

Mobile Monday - Life In General

Just another edition of Mobile Monday! Some photos from my iPhone from the past week or so..

Our collab tees with The Acacia Strain and Winds of Plague came out amazing during production last week. We're about to drop them off with the bands today before they embark on the summer tour. Here's a preview of the printed neck tag for the TAS collab.

All the writing on the back of the TAS collab was done by Brian Obnoxious himself. Make sure to pay attention to the details! Check out some of the drafts from the process.

I recently ate at Five Guys burgers for the first time just to find out what all the hype was about. To be honest, that's all it was. Hype. Yes, it was a delicious burger since you're able to customize it but it was still just a regular "burger joint"-style burger to me. The fries were definitely on point but it's not enough for me to say it's collectively better than In N Out. Maybe I'm just biased being from Southern California, but In N Out definitely does something different to their burgers and that's why I keep coming back! As for Five Guys, I probably won't be making any trips back unless I have to.

Sometimes I grab lunch over at Duke's Burgers since it's literally walking distance from our office. From the looks of my order, I think the cook might have a crush on me.

This past weekend, our very good friend and Glad Rags Ink client Steppie celebrated her clothing brand's 3 Year Anniversary at Biergarten in LA. About a year and a half ago, he came to us at a point in her design career where she knew she could expand but needed the right help. Before coming to us, she literally did EVERYTHING herself. Even the screen printing and production! A true testament to the D.I.Y. mentality which we live by as well. Once she was able to start delegating the production load to us, she could focus more on the design, sales, and marketing aspects of the Steppie brand and her business skyrocketed and is now growing at incredible speeds. It has been quite the spectacle to watch her company and brand grow and I can't wait to see what she does next. Good job, Steppie!

Steppie was even able to grant Debbie Tan's greatest wish- to become a panda!

This is a bit random, but I saw this purse this weekend and couldn't help but notice the logo. I don't know what company it is from but this logo looks way too similar to the iconic Gorilla Biscuits "GB" logo. Tisk tisk!

I finally got to watch Louis C.K. perform stand-up on Netflix and wow, I have been missing out! Dude is hilarious! Speaking of hilarious, a few of our close friends will be performing their own stand-up bits this Tuesday in Pomona at DBA256 Gallery Wine Bar. Come check them out and have a drink with us!

It finally happened. I'm making my return to ice hockey after 10 years since my last time on the ice. Similar to when I used to be in a band with my brother and friends, this is another one of those things that simply gives me a release like nothing else. When I'm playing hockey, nothing else matters. All the troubles of this world seem to melt away and become insignificant when I'm on the ice and to me, that's something I'll never trade. I can't believe I went this long without getting back on the ice but it's probably because I was getting my fix from other things in the meantime, like music and business. I can only hope that everyone is able to find their own escapes in their lives. Find a hobby! There's more to life than work and the internet. LIVE!

- Vince

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Get Warped

As the weather gets warmer and we move further into the summer months, all the big seasonal music festivals and national tours will begin to roll out in full effect. This year's Warped Tour lineup is fixing to be one of the most unique to date as the music industry continues to branch out into new sub-genres searching for the next big thing.

Fortunately, this time around we have the distinct opportunity to team up with not one but TWO bands on the summer tour that are very close with. Our good friends in Winds of Plague and The Acacia Strain will both be performing on the entire Warped Tour this year and we are proud to announce that we will be releasing a collaborative t-shirt with each of them. These exclusive colorways will ONLY be available at Warped Tour at each respective band's merch booth.

Next week we will unveil both t-shirts in all their glory but for now I'll give you these teaser shots:

Stay tuned!

- Vince

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Class Axe

We like weapons and we like putting them on t-shirts. This 1-color design is brought to you by our very own Tyler W.

The Class Axe Tee is now available in our ONLINE SHOP and on Karmaloop. For those of you who would like to support your local shop, please check our RETAILERS page for an L&O dealer near you!

- Vince

Monday, June 13, 2011

Mobile Monday - Filbert Lately

If you've been following along, you may or may not know about my giant Maine Coon cat named Filbert. In this edition of Mobile Monday, I'll show you some of my favorite photos of Filbert from my iPhone.

Mean muggin'.

I want you to understand just how big Filbert really is so here's a photo for reference. No joke, he weighs in at about 20 lb. He might be able to eat your small dog.

Classy. Sophisticated. Filbert.

Sometimes he falls asleep in the most hilarious positions. This is easily one of my favorites. Or maybe he's just showing me what he learned in his yoga class.

All he does all day is sleep! Definitely living the sweet life. When I get home, I guarantee he will either be sleeping or asking for food. The good life.

He doesn't need fancy toys either. Give him a random box and he will be stoked!

Here's a photo my mom sent to me while I was out of town. Filbert patiently watching and waiting for a snack to appear.

I'm convinced though that he might be part dog. He sure acts like one. He even begs for table scraps like a dog whenever someone is sitting at the table eating!

Or maybe part lion?

- Vince

Friday, June 10, 2011


Taking inspiration from a line in the movie Snatch, this design pays homage to anything with substance. Anything with meaning. When something has weight, it has the capacity to make an impact. Whether you're taking it literally or figuratively, it's still true. We can only hope that everyone who steps foot on this world wants to make sure they leave a footprint too. To get our point across, we've got our very own branded anvil. "Heavy is good. Heavy is reliable." This print also features a reflective ink on the back.

The Heavyweights Tee is now available in our ONLINE SHOP and on Karmaloop. For those of you who would like to support your local shop, please check our RETAILERS page for an L&O dealer near you!

- Vince

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Finding a New Home

As a growing company, our job is to continually look towards the horizon and plan ahead. Since our companies continue to expand and mature, we have to find ways to facilitate those ever changing needs and allow room for that growth. Over the past couple years, we've noticed substantial progress for both of our companies and now we are coming to the end of our lease here at the current office. Once again, it's time to start looking for another place to eventually call home. Hopefully, bigger and better.

You can go with this..

Or you can go with that.


How about that?


Oh, and that?

Looks like we've got a lot of decisions to make very soon. It's a very stressful process to go through and it puts an incredible amount of pressure on us to make choices that will ultimately change our lives. But you know what? We like it. It's that exact pressure that pushes us to do what we do and KEEP doing what we do. Without the pressure, there is no ambition. Without ambition, what's the point? Plus, the possibility of being in a NEW office and warehouse for our 4 Year Anniversary event is rather exciting, don't you think?

- Vince