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Black Oshin: The Thriving, Self-Made Clothing Store at SAU

Senior DJ Oshin has been a staple along the St. Ambrose defensive line for the past four years. Like all student-athletes, Oshin has had to find a balance between school and sports. But what makes Oshin stand out from most athletes, and even students his age, is that he owns his very own clothing line.

Black Oshin is an apparel company Oshin started back in high school when his friends were looking to get clothes custom made.

“It all began with a group of my friends in high school wanting custom gear at a reasonable price. But there was a lack of affordable options, so I made the decision to create these items myself, and that decision has led to the business I have today,” described Oshin.

Oshin also detailed the beginnings of his business, creating a set up at his house and teaching himself about different printing techniques.

“I started with circuit vinyl cutting and the ventured into screen printing which allowed me to expand and take on bigger orders. There was so many long nights and headaches faced, especially with my bare minimum supplies and makeshift setup at home. But it all paid off when I launched my own clothing line. Using my newly learned printing setup, I was able to sell hoodies to friends and be able to save money,” Oshin recalled.

But he didn’t stop there. Oshin also expanded to include embroideries as well. 

“I added the addition of an embroidery machine, that offers even more products. It was a challenge learning how the software, how to design logos, and figuring out how to load the machine,” Oshin added.

After high school, Oshin was able to expand his business to a wider population of students, creating more demand and more designs.

“College has had a positive impact on my business. I was able to open up to a new market and target college students which in doing so I had to expand my product line to include embroidered hoodies with different designs and themes, like characters or Christmas themed ones. Having pop-up shops at school has also been very helpful because it allowed people to see and try on the gear in person before making a purchase,” Oshin said.

With all the new money that has opened up, Oshin has been able to reinvest and continue to expand his product line and materials.

“Things are going really well for my business. I’ve been able to reinvest all my earnings into the business which has allowed me to set up a website and purchase new tools,” Oshin commented.

Oshin also recounted his biggest month of sales he’s had since being on campus, and how he is close to matching that number again, in December.

“The Vendor Fair at school has been the biggest help with having our biggest month in April of 2023 with over $1.5 thousand in sales. We are also close to breaking that record this month with the support of some clubs on campus ordering custom gear,” Oshin detailed.

Oshin described the work he has done with clubs on campus as his favorite that he has gotten to do with his business.

“My favorite collaboration is probably one I’m working on right now with Bee Entrepreneurship Club on campus. They have been great to work with; we have done shirts and table runners, and we are now working on getting grocery shopping bags for the Bee Nourished Food Pantry. It feels great to be able to help blubs and teams get great deals and quality products for way less than others,” Oshin illustrated.

So what does the future hold of Black Oshin? Oshin says he is looking to keep the business on campus, and potentially look for a successor. 

“I would love to continue to work on projects, as it is one of my hobbies I love doing. But due to graduating this year, I would love to pass it down to someone and make it a local print shop on campus. But I am not sure where the business is going to go,” Oshin outlined.

Oshin is still on the lookout for someone to take the reigns of Black Oshin for future SAU students. But in his time on campus, Oshin has been able to take something that started as a passion project, and turn it into a thriving, on-campus business.

To shop Black Oshin, visit the website at blackoshin.com.