This issue of the Gazette's "Sponsor Spotlight" features Renee “She-ra” Patrick, co-owner of hikertrash, one of ALDHA-West’s sponsoring gear companies. We asked Renee a few questions about hikertrash so that we can get to know them better. If you have any additional questions for Renee, please leave a comment.
1. Please give a brief description of your company. What products do you sell? How did you decide which products to specialize in? How long have you been doing this?
"Hikertrash began in the trashiest way possible, no really! Back in 2009, I decided to teach myself how to screenprint. So I went to Goodwill and found an old picture frame and sheer curtain that I could make into a cheap, homemade screen. I got some emulsion from Michaels, and using my boyfriend's bathroom, coated and cured my first screen, which I then set in the sun to burn the image of a tall bike I had created in the photo-sensitive screen. It didn't work.
From there I bought professional screens and had more success with the next set of bike designs, and the first version of hikertrash.
"I would find clothing at thrift stores to print on and primarily made things for my thru-hiker friends. When friend and fellow thru-hiker, Brian Frankle, suggested we see if other people wanted to buy hikertrash items, we started the company in early 2014.
"Fast forward almost three years, and we sell a variety of shirts, hats and other items. I also like to take my screenprinting press (handmade from 95% recycled materials) to events like PCT Days to do some live screen printing for those hikers passing through.
"I don't print everything myself anymore, but have a couple of local print shops help us create our items."
2. If you were to play "futurist" in your industry, what would
you predict? Materials, design, market, etc.
"The future of thru-hiking related companies will probably only grow. With the recent increase in popularity in long distance hiking, thanks to those movies (you know which ones), more people are hitting the trails, and other larger gear companies are starting to react to the trend. Once just a fringe sport, thru-hiking is now getting recognized as a way to inspire people, and sell products. While I think our hikertrash community will grow, it's now more crucial than ever to support the trails that made us, so it's important to us to give back. Five percent of our online sales go back to the customer's choice of triple crown long distance trail organizations (and the Oregon Desert Trail cause that's my job!)."
3. Favorite beer?
"Trail magic beer."
4. Favorite hike?
"The one I haven't done yet."
Renee “She-ra” Patrick
Thank-you Renee “She-ra” Patrick, from hikertrash for answering our questions and thanks also go out to members Lawton “Disco” Grinter and Mike Unger for the great interview questions.
If you would like to join in the fun and submit questions we can ask our great sponsors, please send them to - firstname.lastname@example.org.