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Brooklyn, New York
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Jamie started Jamie Clawson in 2011. They detail the beginnings of their company in their Starter Story interview: 
Q: How did you get started on Jamie Clawson?
I studied industrial design (product design) at the University of Cincinnati. It was a 5 year program, the first 2 years the professors told me to drop out because my drawing skills weren’t good enough but they couldn’t fail me because my final products were good. Minus that, college was an amazing learning experience.
I learned to design toys, furniture, lighting, and t-shirt graphics. I also co-oped for some great companies including Nerf and Aeropostale. I love learning about new things which is why I took a fashion co-op at Aeropostale. Aeropostale is in New York City, as soon as I got here, I knew it was where I wanted to be after college.
Since I was little I wanted to start my own business, but that wasn’t what you were supposed to do. You’re supposed to go to school get good grades, go to college and then get a job. I had tons of jobs growing up, 20+, they all drove me nuts. I started a car detailing service with a friend one Summer, but had to go back to college. For my senior project I designed a brand and made products including necklaces, keychains, hats, graphic t-shirts, skateboard decks, and a mobile retail location. My professors and critics didn’t care for the idea because it was different.
I moved to NYC in 2009 after finishing school to pursue a career in design and to try to sell my products. I slept on a couch for awhile and freelanced for a succession of companies, including Calvin Klein Jeans and Levi’s. While instructive and financially necessary, these opportunities didn’t bring me and closer to my true ambition to produce, market and distribute my own design goods.
One random night at happy hour in Fall 2010, a friend (who knew I liked designing and figuring out how to make things) suggested I make premium leather iPhone skins.
A few weeks earlier he had bought a faux leather skin that fell apart after a few days. Around Thanksgiving, I was laid off because of cutbacks and without any other options, I took up my friend’s offer and started making samples. I scoured the city for the best leather and materials and assembled a small collection of iPhone 4 leather skins. In March 2011, I was lucky enough to be featured on coolhunting.com and things took off from there.
I didn’t have any experience with leather, but with my product design background, I prototyped and tested leather and adhesives until I was happy. As sales increased, I started slowly adding to products to my collection.