Taylor Thomas – Live to Love apparel
Role models are hard to come by these days, so the idea of finding one on such a superficial website as Myspace sounds absurd. Yet that is exactly where I first met Taylor Thomas. The doe-eyed Texan beauty is something of a celebrity amongst the Myspace set (a title she’d be quick to modestly shrug off), thanks in part to her welcoming nature and talented friends – The Scene Aesthetic boys, Tyler Brown Williams and Stephen Jerzak, to name but a few. Not content with modelling/studying/enjoying her youth, the 22 year old founded the clothing company Live to Love apparel a year ago, with the simple goal of spreading love. Though the messages of LTL come from Taylor’s strong Christian faith, the need to be loved transcends religion. I spoke to Taylor recently about the ideas behind Live to Love, her recent experience on the A Summer to Remember tour, and what the future holds.
Can you introduce yourself for the readers at ForTheSound.com?
I’m Taylor Thomas, and I own/run a clothing company called Live to Love Apparel.
When did you first start Live to Love apparel?
I started Live to Love almost a whole year ago in November of 2008.
Can you briefly tell us what LTL is all about?
Live to Love Apparel is basically all about spreading love. It is a faith-based clothing company that is driven by the infinite love of Jesus Christ. More than anything it is a way to spread positive messages because hate and negativity have become much too common in our society, so this is my way of shining some light in all of the darkness. People need to know that they are loved.
You ’re studying psychology at university, right? How did the idea to start a clothing company come about? Was it something you’d always wanted to do?
Yes, I received my degree in psychology in December of 2008 and am currently getting my masters in counselling psychology. I have always had this fire burning inside of me [of] wanting to make an impact in people’s lives and be a vessel for Christ to work through. During the busiest time in my life back in November, while I was taking 18 hours and trying to graduate a semester early, I decided to RANDOMLY create this clothing company. I had no idea where to start, but I was just being driven by this passion of wanting to spread love and positive messages. Honestly, I think I was really tired of clothing companies with absolutely no meaning behind them. I wanted to do something that was more than neon colours and a trendy phrase or design. I wanted to make a difference.
You ’ve recently released your Fall line; how many different designs do you have available now?
The fall line consists of 3 new shirts and a hoodie. At the online store right now there are about 10 different shirts, including a tank top, and then of course the hoodie, bracelets, stickers, and track shorts. It is insane to think that I started with one shirt and now I have a whole online store full of goodies. I am super excited for the future of LTL.
Where do you get your design inspiration from?
When I started Live to Love, I knew that the designs were all going to be messages full of meaning. The name “Live to Love” is a message within itself, so most of my designs are very simple and come mostly straight out of the Bible. I don’t want the messages to get lost in a complicated design, so maybe a random person walking down the street who sees one of my shirts will clearly take that message to heart. Powerful messages don’t need a fancy design to get a point across.
At the moment you’re producing all your products yourself, right? Do you see yourself getting more people on board in the future?
I am currently the only person behind Live to Love Apparel. I package every single order myself, manage the myspace, do all the business stuff, etc. It is so much more work than I ever anticipated and between school and the company I am working most all of the time. I hope to definitely get more people on board in the future that have the same vision and passion as myself. I am really thankful for everyone who has supported and helped out LTL thus far. Everything is because of them.
What is your favourite piece from the range?
That’s a hard one, but I think I would have to say the new “there is no life without love” hoodie. I love the message behind it and I must say that it is the comfiest hoodie ever (haha)!
Right now, the LTL range is only available online, through your Myspace and BigCartel store, right? Will we ever see any Live to Love goodies in retail stores?
I would love for LTL to be carried in boutiques or stores. I am just being patient and letting God do His work through little ole me and when the time is right then it will happen!
Do you see yourself pursuing fashion as a career in the future, or keeping it as a side project?
Oh goodness, I definitely don’t see Live to Love as fashion…maybe because it is driven by so much more, but I would love to see LTL expand and do it full time.
You recently took Live to Love on the road with the A Summer to Remember tour, with The Scene Aesthetic, The Color Fred, The Ready Set, Stephen Jerzak and Tyler Brown Williams. How did you get involved with the tour?
Well, before the tour I was really good friends with most everyone who eventually became a part of A Summer to Remember. Knowing what LTL was all about, the idea of the tour was randomly brought up to me. I immediately wanted to be a part of it because the mission of the tour was totally different from your typical tour and I knew it could potentially be a really great thing for everyone involved. It was a longshot because I had never done anything like it. I had never gone on tour and school has never really allowed me to do anything of the sort. Luckily, it all ended up working out perfectly.
What was the reception for LTL like at the different places you visited?
It was incredible. It’s weird to think about myself and LTL as a separate entity from the rest of the tour because I seriously felt as though we were one big family just travelling from city to city.
Can you share some of your favourite tour memories with ForTheSound.com readers? (We love happy tour tales)
Honestly, nothing really sticks out to me because every single city was so memorable and amazing. The best part about this tour was getting to hang out with everyone who came out to the shows beforehand at our “hang outs.” One of the first few nights in CT, our van got broken into and that doesn’t even really stick out to me as something terrible because the entire tour was just so wonderful. The good memories more than made up for any bumps in the road that came along the way.
Was that your first experience of being on tour? What did you think (of the experience)?
This was my first time getting the full experience of being on tour and living day to day in a van, and I must say that I would do it everyday if I could. I absolutely love travelling and getting to meet people, so this is the ideal situation for myself and Live to Love. I want to make an impact, spread hope, and love on people and there is no better way than to actively get out there and do just that.
Any plans for future tours with LTL?
As of right now, no there is nothing planned BUT I definitely will be taking LTL out on tour again. I am looking into Cornerstone and big events like that, and if any opportunities arise then I will definitely jump on board.
What do you hope the future holds for LTL apparel?
In the future, I am planning to partner up with a non-profit organization and really work closely with them by donating portions of every purchase and doing whatever I can, such as mission work etc., to make a difference through LTL. Hopefully LTL will continue to expand and people will open up their hearts to it & honestly that is all I could ever ask for. This company isn’t driven by motives of becoming well known and it isn’t driven by money. I just want LTL to have some sort of positive impact on the world and make a difference.