(Tewolde is a student at Independence High School and writer for the Patriot News Bureau.)
“Are you Ignorant?” is a common phrase that founders Brian Acker, Broderick Cuthberson, and Kavon Shuler use for their clothing line “Ignorant Black Kidz” (also known as IBK Nation). It’s common that our society would view ignorance negatively, but the founders of IBK were determined to change the normal views and make it a positive movement.
Ignorant Black Kidz started after Brian Acker won a T-shirt design contest at Independence High School. After this victory he realized he might have a knack for designing clothes. He then began to notice many trends in fashion being common and dull, which drove him to step out of the crowd and create his own style.
Acker built the clothing line from the ground up in early April 2010, and then, with the help of Shuler and Cuthbertson, introduced it to the public in September 2011. Acker’s brand exploded after selling one of his logo tees and ever since then his clothing has been worn by teenagers all around Charlotte.
Acker says, “There is one thing that has played a key role in continuing their success. Promotion! Promotion! Promotion!” The leaders of IBK Nation have created an “IBK Day” at Independence High School, where all of the purchasers wear their IBK gear from top to bottom. Also they have taken advantage of social media by making a Twitter account (@IBK_NATION), Tumblr account (www.ibknation.tumblr.com), and an official IBK website (www.ibknation.webs.com).
Not only have the IBK leaders focused their time on promoting their brand, but they are also supporting the Stop Kony 2012 movement. For every follower on Twitter they will donate 50 cents, and for every “Stop Kony 2012” shirt they sell they will donate one dollar. Not only does Acker want to change the view of ignorance, but he wants to do his part in changing the world.
Acker is plans to attend the Art institute for graphic design while also continuing to design and promote his clothing line.