BY: JELANI GRANT
Aimed at representing the true power of the mind, I Am Awear is a growing brand which promotes the importance of a positive mindset through their uniquely designed, quality fabricated, open back caps and its popularity is seamlessly rising.
I Am Awear is a growing brand that started in Hamilton and has built a constructive reputation by targeting some of societies’ mentally vulnerable, post-secondary students.
To promote the message of mental awareness, they have merged with multiple schools, organizations, and different restaurants worldwide including the rising sports company XEIST, owned by his closest friend, Justin Avery and Canadian favorite Turtle Jacks.
I Am Awear has organized University campaigns, launching Student Thinking Caps in bookstores across Ontario, at schools such as McMaster University, Brock University, and Guelph University, promoting the message throughout each school.
Hall began working with post-secondary schools in January, recognizing that a significant number of college and university students are coping with stressful situations. Hall told Toronto Caribbean that he began working on a project with Guelph University to address the four suicides that occurred at the school in just seven months. “They’re not sure what it is that’s causing the suicides, but it obviously has something to do with their mental health, stressing out”, he said.
This year, I Am Awear will launch a line of “thinking caps” at the school, with the theme of raising awareness mental health, targeting the students.
Inside of the caps is lined with a permanent reminder for the wearer; the message “Think Positive” to potentially inspire a better state of mind during trying situations.
Jonathan Hall is the CEO of I Am Awear, the fashion forward movement and the sub-brand I Am Awear Sports, which is targeted at athletes invested in mental health awareness. We Are Awear is directed at companies who can place their brand’s logo onto the hat’s patch to raise awareness.
Hall said he was inspired to create this brand, which brings awareness to mental health, after reading The Secret, a book about the study of the law of attraction, sparking his interest in the power of the mind. Hall said social media is one of the greatest factors to impacting mental health in today’s age, especially in grade school and even in post-secondary.
Though he is in and out of the city, Hall says Toronto’s fashion scene is like night and day compared to the fashion community he knows in Hamilton. “If [Hamilton] had an industry scene, it would literally be a handful of people out here that are going to Toronto and back trying to stay in the light of things because Toronto is moving much faster,” he said.
The I Am Awear caps are currently available in black, camouflage, beige, navy blue, and tan. Their original collection of caps are being sold in multiple stores including Brimz on Queen Street, as well as a hat store in Cleveland. Hall is currently offering to arrange delivery of the I Am Awear caps by reaching out to him online.
Jonathan Hall is a native of Hamilton, but both of his parents were born in Jamaica. He spent a lot of time in Jamaica as an adolescent. In the summer, I Am Awear will be distributing a limited amount of all-white caps, so fans of the brand are encouraged to follow their Instagram and Twitter to be the first to own the exclusive color ways. “The all-white hat is based around model, Amina Blue…we did a hat with her last year,” he said.
Hall and I Am Awear expect to continue to spread the awareness of mental health by portraying ways to remedy the negative effects today’s society has on the mind. They hope to achieve this through the companies’ determination and expression of the importance of mental stability.