My name is Marcus Harvey and I have a passion for Portland.
Call it being a 90’s baby, the rise of MJ and Ken Griffey Jr, being brainwashed an Oregon Duck fan by my parents, or proximity to the Nike World headquarters but man did I love sports. Naturally, I would go on to become an Oregon Duck where I graduated in 2012 with a degree in Digital Arts and Business.
During my time at school, I developed a love for marketing, art, screen printing, branding and found a group of great friends in my fraternity.
In moving back to PDX in 2012 I started a freelance apparel design business where companies from all over the country began asking for apparel that had “Made in Portland” on the tags.
As Instagram was just beginning to grow I started @portland as a way to build community and share in my love for the city through photography and these companies who were wanting to attach themselves to Portland. Starting from 0 followers in 2013, I’ve grown it to 340,000 followers with people using my #portlandnw 460,000 times over the past five years.
In managing and running the page, I saw the pride that Portlanders had and wanted to create something we could all wear to show it off. On Black Friday of 2014, using my background, I launched Portland Gear with two t-shirts, two photos on the @Portland page and a website I’d built the night before. The first day it did $5,000 in sales and I’ve never looked back.
Since then, we’ve seen our products all over the world and have shipped a piece of Portland to every state and 60 countries.
Through the use of our 1973 VW Westfalia, inspired by Nike, which was used as our mobile pop up store, to now a 900 sq foot retail store on 19th and Burnside and a 3,000 sq foot office and event space, our team has grown to 7, awesome team members who work on the brand full time.
Over the past 5 years we’ve been fortunate to do awesome local collaborations with the Trail Blazers, Timbers, Thorns, OHSU, US Women’s National team, Water ave Coffee, Breakside brewing, University of Portland, nonprofits and more. It’s incredibly important for us to stay true to our roots and we’ve found so much joy in these local partnerships.
I want to create products that people actually enjoy wearing and sharing, and build a community around the city and its amazing people. Thank you for all the support and allowing me and my best friends (who happen to be my first employees) to live our dreams and do what we love every day.
It’s been a fun journey growing the brand over the past 5 years and I look forward to what the future has in store.