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Crashing the Norm: How Evan Skilliter’s Passion for Sports and Sustainability is Redefining Streetwear

 Photo: Evan Skilliter

Roots in Sports and Education

In the fast-paced world of fashion, where trends come and go in the blink of an eye, one brand stands out for its authenticity, passion, and unwavering commitment to self-expression: Crashing Clothing Company. This streetwear brand, guided by nostalgia and founded by Evan Skilliter, is not just a clothing line—it’s a reflection of Skilliter’s journey, values, and love for people and our planet.

Born and raised in Bluffton, Ohio, a small college town with a population just under 4,000, Skilliter has always been driven by a love for sport—a passion that has shaped his identity and inspired the creation of Crashing. Along with his role as owner and creative director of Crashing, Skilliter serves as Assistant Professor of Sport Management at Bluffton University, his alma mater since graduating in 2014.

Values Shaped by Experience

“Our values and belief system are shaped by our past experiences,” says Skilliter. “My past experiences largely involve sport. The court and the field are where I learned how to respect others, handle defeat, accept criticism, and how to be confident while staying humble.”

Nostalgic Design Elements

Through Crashing’s Spring/Summer 2024 line, the second release since its inception, you can find plenty of references to Skilliter’s love of sport. The line offers jerseys from three sports: baseball, basketball, and hockey. The basketball jersey, in particular, is reminiscent of the Seattle Supersonics, one of the NBA’s Western Conference powerhouses during Skilliter’s youth.

“I loved ’90s basketball, especially (Michael) Jordan’s Bulls, but I always had a ton of respect for the teams that went up against them, like the ‘Sonics. I’m thankful for their part in the positive experiences of my childhood. Without villains, we wouldn’t have heroes.”

Another nod to greats-that-fell-short is a graphic tee featuring an illustration of Clyde “The Glide” Drexler, Jordan’s first victim en route to his famous six championships.

The line also includes vintage-esque items like a selection of nylon coaches’ jackets, a 1992 basketball camp tee, and a polo shirt that looks and feels like a school uniform.

Commitment to Sustainability

Beyond its aesthetic appeal, Crashing serves as a platform for Skilliter to share his message of personal growth, community, and love. One of the hallmarks of Crashing is its commitment to sustainability and ethical practices—a reflection of Skilliter’s values and dedication to making a positive impact on the world.

Aware of the harm fast fashion is causing the planet, Skilliter ensures every item ordered from Crashing is made on demand, preventing the brand from sitting on extra inventory that may end up in landfills. Additionally, Skilliter promises Crashing will only release two lines per year, roughly following the fashion industry’s common practice of a Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter release.

“There is a lot more I would like to do, but I’m happy with the first few steps we’ve taken to protect the environment. The only downside is that products are going to take longer to get to consumers than I’d like. But that is just a small price to pay for a bigger mission,” Skilliter said.

Supporting Mental Health

Crashing has also committed to donating a portion of its profits to organizations involved in mental health aid, resources, and research—a mission that stems from the original reason Crashing was founded. “ There’s a bigger story of the brand that centers around my own mental health and finding a creative outlet to keep myself distracted and fulfilled,” Skilliter said. “I hope that story comes out through our love for people, community, and the earth.”

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