Thank you to SouthCoastTODAY.com for the great write-up on Los Perros! For the original article, click here.
NEW BEDFORD — From consignment clothing to garment printing, Los Perros on Acushnet Ave. offers help to bring anyone's idea to life at a fraction of the price.
“This is my way of giving back because I know how it feels to get something screen printed and be so much money,” said Kashif Amar, 35, co-owner of the retail, printing and consignment store.
Known for his clothing brand Kasa Meiggs, launched in 2014, Amar dealt with the high costs of working with screen printing businesses.
“I always had this idea of cutting costs," he said. "I wanted to cut out the middleman."
Last year, Amar purchased a DTG (direct to garment) printer. Compared to screen printing, which is by layers and colors on one image, DTG digitally prints into the fabric.
It's cost effective because it's less ink and can do everything at once, multiple times on items such as coats, hats, T-shirts, or print on jeans, socks and sneakers.
“It makes the process easier,” he said.
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In July, Amar worked on a branding project with Bobby Afonso, owner of Top Shelf Bar & Grill. After, Afonso asked if Amar would be interested in owning a shop.
“He's the man with the resources," Amar said. "He was just looking for a curator, someone who could run it for him."
Amar said Afonso had the idea, the logo and the store name — "Los Perros," a phrase Afonso likes to use. Amar says it means "dog" but more like “you’re my boy.”
Last month, the store opened three doors down from Top Shelf in the Costelo Group building. Amar runs the store with his partner Manuel Rozario III, who deals with all the printing aspects.
“I've never even remotely thought I'd be getting into fashion, or doing anything like that," Amar said.
How it all started for Ka
Growing up in the West End of New Bedford, Amar said it was "harsh" living in his neighborhood. “You were never really guaranteed that tomorrow was going to be granted," he said.
Amar said he lost several of his friends to violence.
The first time he started printing on garments was to create “memory shirts” at the former Elaine’s on Purchase St. to honor his fallen friends.
“It was a way for me to take my mind off of certain things," he said. "I just knew I was a creative person."
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In 2012, after a hospitalization, Amar said to keep from going crazy, he spent his recovery time bleaching clothing, ripping up leather and putting outfits together in his mother's basement.
“It's something that I found myself being good at," he added. Amar posted his outfits on Instagram — the rest was history.