DYLAN SIEVERS

Making It In America: Bulldog Lighting

This Week On Making It In America

We shed some light on the importance of American manufacturing with Mr. Dylan Sievers of Bulldog Lighting

Please tell us a about yourself.

Well, I was born and raised in San Carlos, California in Northern California. My parents however are from San Francisco and Arkansas. So, I have some city and country influence. I have a sister who is two years older than me as well. I have always been into cars and trucks and enjoyed working on Jeeps or Dirt bikes with my dad as a kid. I was actually lucky enough to be a co-driver for a team racing in the Best in the Desert Series when I was 17 and a senior in high school. The team couldn’t afford the $2000 for LED Light Bars from the companies in the industry at the time so with the support and help of my family and their over 25 years of experience in the electrical industry, I started Bulldog Lighting.

Why is making it in America (manufacturing) important to you?

We first started Bulldog Lighting by designing our led light bar and having China manufacture it. As time went on, we decided to begin assembling the fixtures in the United States much like some of our competitors. Manufacturing here became important to us as we found that the overseas manufacturer was giving our ideas and designs to anyone who asked for them. We quickly determined that making it here was the only way to protect our designs and patents pending at the time. With the constant job losses that were being shown on the news as well as seeing them locally, it was obvious that we needed to help in any way that we could. Even if it was a small part at the time, we knew that every little bit helps.

In what ways have you and/or your company made it in America?

Well, it hasn't been easy. But that is with anything, you have to put forth the effort in order to get a result, and if that isn't what you want then you keep pushing forward. Through all of the research that we have done in order to find exactly what we need to do in order to make it here in America it proved to be a much more difficult task than we had originally thought. Maybe that was why no one else in the industry had tried as hard as we did. It has taken almost 2 years to iron out the technical specifications, the logistics of where the factories are, and to perfect the parts that go into the actual finished fixture. You wouldn't believe the detail but it even came down to finding the right texture or type of powder coat that we were going to use. We have been certified by Made in USA Certified®, the nation’s leading 3rd party auditor for Made in USA Origin claims. We are very proud to have it all made here in America, all the way down to screws, pcb’s (printed circuit boards), housings, end caps, wire, lenses, and much more. Of course there are some components on the PCB that are not made here which include capacitors and resistors which are not even available from any U.S. source since they were never made here and have no inclination to ever be made here (or else we would use those!). Even the CREE LED starts here and is then sent overseas to get cut and packaged. It is then sent back on a reel, as are the other components and the final production of the PCB is done in Texas and California. According to the Federal Trade Commission standards, final and most transformation completed in the USA warrants a Made In USA badge. Since those components are the only pieces not made here, we are well above the standard.

What are the toughest challenges to make Bulldog-Lighting in the USA?

The toughest challenges we face is the misconception other companies imply that they are Made in USA but don't actually source all of their materials from within the states. Since we started Bulldog Lighting, the entire industry has seen an insurgence of imported LED Light bars which are lowering the value of the LED light bar as a product. We combat these challenges by providing the strongest and most durable light bar as well as making it right here in America. The garage sellers that import overseas light bars don’t pay a tax for labor, or a city or county tax or anything. We are working with various foundations to bring awareness to American Made Matters, Made in USA Foundation and more that support US Companies and manufacturing in America.

What is your favorite quote? How does it affect you in your efforts to support manufacturing in the USA?

A favorite quote of my mom’s is; Opportunity is missed by most people because it comes dressed in overalls and looks like hard work. Thomas Edison. I think for me that quote simply means you have to work to succeed. Nothing is easy or everyone would be doing it. I used to work in my mom’s business, Coolballs®, she made antenna balls. I was 6 years old (lol, it wasn’t that kind of child labor. I had to have my homework done first. I loved it. It made me feel big.) I have always worked hard. My mom was the only mom who would give us summer homework! I would package Coolballs® in plastic bags, print them, or ship them out to customers. Bringing back manufacturing to the United States is important. We manufacture a high quality, American Made product. The United States fought for labor rights, fought to make this the country the land of opportunity, THE AMERICAN DREAM, but if we don’t manufacture anything anymore, what else will we do? We can't all be in the customer service industry, can we? Bulldog Lighting is affordable, because we are for the working man or woman. This quote means to me that opportunity isn't easy to grab but that it takes hard work in order to get the results that you want. Made In America doesn't have to cost you.


Connect with All American Clothing Co.

Made in the USA: The 30 Day Journey

Documentary Film Features All American Clothing Co.

Forever changed by witnessing the devastation in his hometown after an aluminum plant shuts down due to outsourcing, Josh Miller sets out on a 30 day journey across America to find out if “Made in the USA” really means anything anymore.

Throughout the journey Josh lives off of “Made in USA” products to the best of his ability, and speaks to the people in the heart of America (including the Founders of All American Clothing Co.) about the issues facing America today as the continued outsourcing of the manufacture of goods erodes the manufacturing backbone of the American economy, and the dreams of countless workers around the nation.

The All American Clothing Co. is proud to be a part of the film "Made in the USA: The 30 Day Journey." As Josh Miller attempted to find if "made in USA" really meant anything anymore, he stopped by All American Clothing Co. headquarters and interviewed our Founders about the importance of American made. The interview is featured in the documentary film. It is one you will not want to miss!

Click here to rent the movie on iTunes for just $4.99.


Connect with All American Clothing Co.

ThatMomentWhen1.jpg

That Moment When

You`re an employee at All American Clothing Co. and you are waiting in the line outside the men`s restroom during a Blake Shelton concert. Suddenly, you realize the guy in front of you is wearing All American Jeans.

What would you do?

So there I was…

Waiting in line to use the men`s restroom. I reached in my pocket to check the time on my phone. Looking down on my phone, I noticed the guy in front of me was wearing All American Jeans.

I said to myself, “Self, what should you do?"

As a representative of the company, I felt responsible to thank the man in front of me for supporting USA workers. As a human being, I felt like I should leave him alone. A restroom is no place to compliment a man on his jeans after all.

The situation required further investigation...

I made a decision based on 4 key factors:

1.) We we`re standing outside the restroom - If we were inside, things may get weird.
2.) I was twice his body size - In case he took offense to what I was about to say, I felt comfortable enough to protect myself.
3.) He had a cold beverage - Perhaps this would make him sociable.
4.) Both of us were wearing All American Jeans - At the end of the day, it`s rare to see someone wearing USA made jeans as only 2% of clothing sold in America is actually made in America.

Time was not on my side. The line got closer to the restroom. If I chose to thank him for wearing our jeans, I`d have to act soon.

The Verdict:

Me: “Hey there, nice pants!”
Guy: (Turns around, looks puzzled) “Huh? What`s that?”
Me: “Nice pants man. Jeans made in America from All American Clothing Co. I work there! Thanks for supporting USA workers with us.”
Guy: “You work there?! I love All American Jeans man. My brother got me hooked on them. We like the tracebility feature.”
Me: “Awesome. Thanks again. Sorry if I creeped you out, but I had to say something. I do marketing work there & felt like I should thank you.”
Guy: “No problem. I`m glad you said something. It`s a small world sometimes! You got a card?”
Me: “Sure do. Here you go. Nice running into you. Enjoy the rest of the show & thank your brother for his support next time you see him.”
Guy: “Thanks. Will do!”

What would you have done in this situation? Did Boomer handle it the way you would?

Do you have a fun story about someone you met wearing All American Jeans?

Share your thoughts in the comments below!

All American Clothing Co.


Connect with All American Clothing Co.

made in usa monday

Where Are Our Made in USA Supporters At?

Here`s a list of our top 10 made in America visitors by state!

1. California – 9.60%
2. New York – 7.53%
3. Ohio – 6.62%
4. Illinois – 5.86%
5. Pennsylvania – 5.53%
6. Texas – 5.29%
7. Michigan – 4.91%
8. Florida – 4.37%
9. New Jersey – 2.94%
10. Washington – 2.76%

Did your state make the cut? Let us know with a comment below!

All American Clothing Co.

BeFunky_bob canva final.jpg

Fall Into Comfort Made in USA

The leaves are starting to turn, the air is beginning to cool, and the days are getting shorter.

Do you know what that means? Fall is coming soon!

Fall means football, but at All American Clothing Co. it is officially 'blue jean season.' People will start wearing blue jeans again, making fall one of our favorite times of the year!

Dressing for fall gets tricky as you make the transition from summer, especially if you are considering to do so in only American made clothing items. Just 2% of the apparel purchased in the United States is actually American made. Fortunately, you have no worries at All American Clothing Co. We have got you covered!

Below, we have compiled some of our favorite made in USA clothing items for you to begin the fall season with. We hope you will try them all!

Please consider making the American made choice as you begin to layer up for the fall season. After all, if each American just spent $64 on made in USA clothing items, it would generate over 200,000 new jobs.

All American Clothing Co.


Connect with All American Clothing Co.

Chasity DDN

Closer Look: All American Clothing Co. Thriving

 
 

Arcanum facility only produces, sells U.S.-made apparel.

By: Rachel Murray, staff writer Dayton Daily News

The percentage of clothing purchased by consumers that was made in the United States has dropped dramatically since the 1990s, and one local company hopes to contribute to a turnaround for American made apparel.

Just 2.5 percent of the clothing purchased by American consumers last year was made in the U.S., down from close to 56 percent in 1991, according to the American Apparel & Footwear Association.

Add to that a recent Federal Trade Commission crackdown on deceptive “made in the U.S.A.” claims, which experts said may have eroded consumer confidence, plus the news that California-based American Apparel hasn’t turned a profit in four years, and the outlook for U.S.-made clothing appears bleak.

Photo credits: Jim Witmer, Dayton Daily News

But not to the owners of All American Clothing Company in Arcanum, a small village that sits an hour north of Dayton in Darke County. The business sells U.S.-made jeans, T-shirts, socks, shoes, and more, primarily online at allamericanclothing.com, and uses technology to show customers its apparel is made in the U.S.

“I won’t disclose profit specifics, but we are a now multi-million dollar company. We grow every year. We haven’t had a down year yet. We are up 10 percent for the year and we expect that to go up as we get into our busier holiday shopping season,” All American Clothing Company co-founder and president B.J. Nickol said.

His father and co-owner Lawson Nickol said more growth is on the horizon.

“We are just about ready to look into wholesale. We have had over 500 companies ask us to make products for them. We are not ready for that yet, but it’s just around the corner,” the senior Nickol said.

Lawson Nickol said he started the company in 2002. He said when his former apparel company employer decided to move jobs to Mexico, he quit two days later and hasn’t looked back.

“We set a two year deadline. We expected it would take some time, and it did. The first two years we took in $1,800, and that’s it. We ate a lot of Cheerios morning, lunch and in the evening to make it, and as we moved into the third year we were making an income,” Lawson Nickol said.

The company moved from an eight-by-eight foot closet “warehouse” to it’s current location at 1 Pop Rite Drive and now has over 40,000 square feet, and employs 12 people, according to All American Clothing Company director of marketing and communications, Logan Beam.

“Our 12 full-time workers can support over 12,000 American jobs in many different industries, from American cotton farmers, to truck drivers, to the U.S.A.-made box the product is shipped in, to the postman who delivers the product to your doorstep. It’s about supporting jobs,” Beam said.

But how can consumers be sure they are getting a product made entirely in the U.S.?

The FTC recently filed a complaint against Columbus-based Made in the USA Brand, which provided a “Made in U.S.A.” certification seal to companies and marketers.

“The issue was that the certifier was taking no steps to independently confirm that the companies using its mark made products in the U.S.A. We saw some examples where companies were using the mark to promote products that were not made in the U.S.,” said FTC staff attorney Julia Solomon Ensor.

Made in the USA Brand agreed to a consent decree that it would either need to independently audit products that used it’s certification mark, or give companies a logo that stated that the product was self-certified as made in the U.S., without any independent confirmation, Solomon Ensor said.

She said it’s an issue of trust.

“It’s vitally important that these claims are truthful. Our primary mission here at the FTC is to prevent consumer deception,” Solomon Ensor said.

All American Clothing Company has its products certified by another firm, Made in the USA Certified, which states that each company must undergo a rigorous audit to show all of its products are produced in the U.S., but it also goes a step further.

All of the jeans sold have a certificate of traceability.

“The certificate provides a traceability number, and with that number a consumer of All American jeans can log onto allamericanclothing.com and go through the process of how their jeans were made. We will show them the American workers who produced these jeans back to the American cotton farmers who grew the cotton,” Beam said.

Most American Clothing Company Jeans are priced at $48.99, T-shirts range from $8.99 to $20, which is comparable to many name brands.

Utilizing a network of cotton farmers in Texas, the cotton is harvested and shipped to a denim mill in Lubbock, Texas, from there it’s sent to one of two cut and sew factories in Texas or Kentucky, then the finished jeans are shipped to the warehouse in Arcanum. There the jeans get a “made in the U.S.A.” patch before they are shipped to consumers, Beam said.

“Buying made in the U.S. products gives people a sense of pride. Consumers are proud to buy something that’s made here. They are supporting their own and getting a quality product,” B.J. Nickol said.


Connect with All American Clothing Co.

Mike-Rowe-Works

Profoundly Disconnected?

Meet Mike Rowe. Mike and his Foundation, mikeroweWORKS are committed to help close our country’s skills gap by helping hardworking people train for the technical skills and expertise needed to keep America running.

About the skills gap:

- A trillion dollars in student loans.
- Record high unemployment (over twelve million).
- Three million good jobs that no one seems to want.

Mike and his foundation believe that three million good jobs available with twelve million unemployed is profoundly disconnected.

We agree.

Industries like the American garment industry continue to lose jobs within their supply chain due to the skills gap. In total, the American garment industry has lost 85% of it`s skilled labor force since 1990 according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics. What used to be over 900,000 workers now hardly exceeds 100,000. Also, with 98% of the clothing purchased in the USA being foreign made (source: ABC World News), it is not getting easier to find American made clothing… or the skilled tradesmen to make it. This is why we are proud to support the mikeroweWORKS Foundation and it`s efforts to promote hard work and support of the skilled trades in the many industries that rely on skilled labor.

The mikeroweWORKS Foundation awards scholarships to men and women who have demonstrated an interest in and an aptitude for mastering a specific trade. The mikeroweWORKS Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.:/

More than $2.5 million in scholarships have been raised and donated to schools around the country thanks to the mikeroweWORKS Foundation, including Midwest Technical Institute, Tulsa Welding School, The Refrigeration School and Universal Technical Institute.

The goal of mikeroweWORKS Foundation and Profoundly Disconnected is to challenge the absurd belief that a four-year degree is the only path to success.

The Skills Gap is here, and if we don’t close it, it’ll swallow us all.

Which is a long way of saying, mikeroweWORKS could use your help…


Connect with mikeroweWORKS

Amanda Watkins Singing 2

THE BIBLE – A Sneak Peek With Amanda Watkins

“The Bible” tells the story of America’s working man and woman. I’m a huge advocate of American made products and believe this song really celebrates and humanizes what it means to support American workers. I hope you all enjoy this “All American Exclusive” song and can’t wait to share the rest of the album with you! ~Amanda

THE BIBLE

I am a farmer’s daughter

I spend my days in the fields I know

Hard hands just like my father

The sweat of the brow

Taught me how to grow

Every day we're steady like a train

That's heavy from the freight

Night rolls in

When the fields they cry we kneel to the sky

We pray for rain just for survival

With the will of a bullet and a Bible as a gun

You ain't seen hard til it gets harder

We're living off the land

Of the workin’ man

Til the floods come

These days the wind blows stronger

And all my mama does is weep

And I work for two now

Cause all my daddy does is sleep

Every day we're steady like a train

That's heavy from the freight

Night rolls in

When the fields they cry we kneel to the sky

We pray for rain just for survival

With the will of a bullet and a Bible as a gun

You ain't seen hard til it gets harder

We're living off the land

Of the workin man

Til the floods come

The day came when I bartered

Off my land

To another man

And I moved into a city

To live out the dreams

That my father planned

We pray for rain just for survival

With the will of a bullet and a Bible as a gun

You ain't seen hard til it gets harder

We're living off the land

Now my children know it’s the price we've paid just to carry his name.

~Amanda Watkins

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Thank you for experiencing All American Life!

wayde new 1

The Road Less Traveled

Meet Wayde “THE POOR MAN” Fishman. We met Wayde less than a year ago while vacationing in Hawaii. He is one of the most unique, exciting, and interesting men we have shared an adventure with.

Here`s Why:

This shaved headed, goatee wearing, tattoo covered, former MMA practioner from Boston moved to Hawaii 18 years ago to make his dreams come true and show others how to vacation or move to Hawaii on a poor man's budget. Today, he runs the adventurous Wayde's World Hawaii Tours.

Coming from a small suburb outside of Boston, Wayde has learned that the places you discover, the people you help along the way, and the experiences you live through on your life journey matters more than how much money you make or how many things you have.

Wayde left the hard edge lifestyle of Boston behind and changed to one of Aloha in Hawaii. He bases his life now on a spiritual journey, sharing the Spirit of Aloha with everyone he meets. He is passionate about making sure everyone and anyone should be able to enjoy Hawaii to the fullest, regardless of what budget they have.

He has recruited some of the best hiking guides and now is the best travel agency manager in the business to provide visitors with the most private, personal, and custom tours Hawaii has to offer. Wayde's guides all have their own lives and jobs, but like any super-hero movie, Wayde can assemble them together at any time using their special talents to help him give you one unforgettable experience of the island. Wayde's crew not only trail blaze Oahu, but seek adventure on other islands, discovering new places and learning new things about themselves as they challenge each other to go above and beyond their personal limits.

__________________________________________________________________________________________

The All American Clothing Co. would like to thank Wayde "The Poor Man" Fishman for allowing us to share his story. We`d also like to thank Wayde for supporting USA jobs by wearing some American made clothing items as he takes a walk on the wild side. The next time you visit the island of Oahu, be sure to give Wayde a call to schedule a tour! They are unforgettable.

It is a privilege to meet people like Wayde who care so much for their environment, the people around them, and their country. We hope to give back in the same sense as Wayde does by helping others through many efforts.

We appreciate the support we receive from people like Wayde all around the world. You keep us going! If we wanted to make more money, we`d move production overseas. We will not trade USA jobs for foreign profits. Together with your support, we can continue to grow and create jobs. Remember, if each American spent just $66 on American made goods, it would generate over 200,000 new jobs (source: ABC World News).

Thank you.

All American Clothing Co.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Thank you for experiencing All American Life!

BeFunky_American tag camo.jpg

It Says Made In USA, But Is It Really?

You want to support made in USA items, so you spend money during those shopping trips on items that feature the ‘made in USA’ label. It feels great. You know that if all Americans spent just $66 on USA made items it would generate over 200,000 new jobs. You believe that you are making a difference by doing your part!

But then one day you learn that you have been deceived by manufacturers who are printing false ‘made in USA’ labels on their product.

How would you feel if this happened to you?

A recent CBS report announced that the United States government is now finding that companies are now making false claims and they are cracking down on them. Specifically with certifiers that issue "Made in USA" seals. One is even allowing partners to use the seal without checking that their products were in fact made in USA.

As the made in USA discussion gains momentum, it is important to know if the product you are purchasing is in fact 100% made in the USA. Manufacturers, certifiers, and consumers must all take proper actions to ensure they have a trustworthy shopping experience.

As a manufacturer, this is exactly why All American Clothing Co. offers traceability technology. Each made in USA jean comes with a 'Certificate of Authenticity' that includes a traceability number. Enter the number on our website and we will show you the USA workers who were involved in making your jean. We will even show you the farmers and mill who produced the cotton! From farm to closet, traceability supports over 12,000 American workers in our supply chain as it showcases how your jeans are made. This way All American Clothing Co. can offer an added proof that our product is as American as apple pie.

Watch ABC World News trace All American Jeans back to the workers who make them.

The American garment industry has lost -85% of it`s labor force since the early 1990s. In addition, just 2% of the clothing purchased in the United States in fact American made. The All American Clothing Co. hopes that their efforts with traceability technology can change the course of the American garment industry as the company continues to grow and support American workers.

About All American Clothing Co.

All American Clothing Co. is a genuine success story of a growing company in today’s economy. The company’s employees believe in “USA made matters” as they strive to foster loyalty among customers. The employees are experts in product quality and World Class service. To find out more about the passion and success of All American Clothing Co. please read Our Story.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________