Somewhere between the "boys' department" and the "men's section" lie today's teenage guys — still growing, hard to fit, but possessing their own sense of style. With these challenges in mind, a North Texas family has launched d.RT — a collection of fashion-forward young men's tailored clothing, tees, joggers, jackets, and accessories.
D.RT (pronounced “dirt”) is the creation of 17-year-old Dylan Robert Thompson, his sister Paula Brunson, and her husband, Brian Brunson, who say they wanted to "fill a void in the market space with designs for young men who appreciate fashion, while providing a value to parents."
Innovation was key to accomplishing both those goals. The collection had to withstand a teenage boy’s life and be able to grow with rapidly growing 10- to 18-year-olds, they determined. As a result, a signature suit jacket features a whip stitch hem for adjustable sleeve length. A pant contains a loop and button system for adjustable pant hem.
They even created a fit guide for specific categories within the collection — bomber jackets, quilted jackets, performance hoodies, and more.
Parents will appreciate that all the fabrics, including tailored items, are washable and wrinkle-resistant. Most pieces in the collection range from $50 to $350.
"As an athlete, we are required to wear suits before games, and since I am still growing, I was buying one to two suits per year," says Dylan, who hails from Alberta, Canada. "With d.RT, we really wanted to create a suit that grows with you, and is durable by making them machine washable and wrinkle resistant."
But there's more to it than the clothes.
The trio also wanted to create a community for young men, an often overlooked fashion and lifestyle demographic. Paula and Brian Brunson, who are raising three young boys in Dallas, want d.RT to help share a positive message to young men about taking pride in their appearance. A blog on the brand’s website will reinforce the message, they say.
"Our family is very diverse, and Paula and I have three multi-ethnic young boys, which makes diversity a driving force behind our brand," says Brian. "With d.RT, we wanted to create a positive and inclusive community for young men, who are not only seeking fashion advice, but also looking for a resource for life's challenges."
The founders say they noticed a lack of peer influence for teen boys outside of celebrity, sports, and entertainment, so they set out to make a collection that provides a youthful, yet sophisticated, approach to dressing young men — the next generation of gentlemen.
"Coming up with a clothing brand for this age group has been something our family has talked about for a long time, and it is so exciting to see our vision come to life," Paula says. "My younger brother, Dylan, has really been the inspiration behind the brand, and we are thrilled to offer not only a clothing line, but a resource for our young men, our next generation of leaders."
The entire d.RT collection is available in the U.S. and Canada at www.shopdrt.com.