I'd like to take a brief moment to introduce myself and Astronaut Apparel. Over the next month, I'll be working diligently to produce quality, minimalist clothing that will feature the distinct Astronaut logo.
I'm passionate about space technology and following all of the advancements that are being made in both the commercial and public sector. Currently, I'm completing a Master's degree in Aeronautics with a focus in Space Studies and small Unmanned Aircraft Systems through Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (online). This program has reaffirmed my love for space as I've completed courses in space exploration, space life sciences, and space launch operations. Furthermore, I'm training to obtain a private pilot's license, and enjoy flying my sUAS around. Hoping to one day fly a drone on Mars.
Astronaut Apparel began as an idea in 2014 while working IT in Colorado. A website was generated, a logo was produced, and a few T-shirt designs were submitted. However, not much occurred since, as the nature of my job required that I travel, with most of my personal items resigned to a storage unit or a friend's basement. That has been the case until recently, as I've settled in the beautiful location of Charleston, South Carolina. It is here in the Low Country that we'll build the company from the ground up.
Building the Brand
Now that I have a set location, with an address and mailbox, it's time to get to work.
Multiple ideas have been floated throughout the years as to what kind of shirts I wanted to produce, beginning with graphic T-shirts and Polos. The logo that I had previously just didn't look good on a shirt, as I messed around with different designs on Photoshop.
An artist friend of mine was commissioned last fall to sketch some Astronauts based on my rudimentary drawings.
She was able to come up with an original sketch that I really liked.
I hired a graphic designer to further refine it. This was the result.
It's going to look great when it's embroidered!
Integrating the Blockchain
Our plan is to integrate blockchain technology into the business when and where it is appropriate, and also simply for fun. I have been an avid cryptocurrency and blockchain enthusiast since 2013, lurking in reddit and bitcointalk communities. I started with Bitcoin, Dogecoin, and Vertcoin, and have since been primarily focused on Ethereum and the awesome projects developing on it.
I started an Ethereum meetup group in Charleston back in November to bring together talented developers, business leaders, and those eager to learn more. We've had plenty of great discussion so far, as many people are creating exciting, new things with blockchain technology.
Initially, Astronaut Apparel plans on integrating a basic smart contract that will allow a person to view:
- date on which we received the item
- date the logo was sewn onto the item
- date the item was purchased
- what currency was used to purchase
- date the item was shipped
We are open to suggestions for other information that can or should be included! Maybe user-specific discount codes? That's a possibility.
Later, I plan on introducing my own Astronaut Apparel tokens to anyone that purchases items. The more items purchased, the more tokens earned. These tokens will allow you to participate in various activities on the site, such as design contests.
Artists from around the world can submit space and science graphic T-shirt designs, and anyone with Astronaut Apparel tokens will be able to vote on the design they like the best. The winner will receive those tokens, along with a small percentage of each shirt sold. Other incentives will likely be available at this time as well.
The goal is to eventually transition to a Decentralized Autonomous Organization if and when Astronaut Apparel grows and thousands of people have tokens. We will not have an ICO. Simply buy a shirt, get Astronaut Apparel tokens, have company governance.
It is my goal to have Astronaut Apparel up and running in ~1 month, with initial products being sold on OpenBazaar and the website. New products will be integrated throughout 2018.
Getting the logo correctly embroidered, making sure the apparel doesn't wear after several washes, and making sure the products remain comfortable are all very important factors to me.
The blockchain elements will come later in the summer or fall. I'll be looking at other avenues to sell in a decentralized manner and for cryptocurrency.
Thanks for reading!