Tyler Madsen, designer and owner of LOVE NAIL TREE apparel, uses his t-shirt line as a way to spread awareness, and subtly shed light on the less-talked-about topics in our culture. He talks to RAW about what inspires his designs. Be sure to RSVP to attend the fashion show, featuring his apparel, at the next Long Beach showcase on Thursday, July 22nd at the Maya Hotel! 


How did you first get started?
I was without a doubt on my way to being an architect. First year of college, I got into a great school for it, but ended up dropping out because of a sudden change in my outlook on life. Before I knew it, I was making cheesy t-shirts with iron-on prints. I always say I have an entrepreneurial spirit, and it just happened to merge with making t-shirts. If I knew how to sing and play guitar, I would probably be trying to be a rockstar! Then I got engaged to my beautiful wife Michelle, and she jumped in full-time heading up all of our jewelry and helping the line really take off. 

Tell us about your clothing line.
We are a line of graphic tees and jewelry. Our biggest desire is to provoke conversation and shed light on topics and issues that do not get talked about enough in our culture. All of our tees have some sort of story or meaning about the shirt printed inside. We take pride in the fact that our tees are not just a cool graphic slapped on some fabric, but a cool graphic with an iceberg of meaning, thought and inspiration. We also take pride in our collabs with many non-profits actually tackling and solving the issues we attempt to shed light on. There is a growing passion to impact the industry that is also growing inside me. Fashion can be so fickle and shallow. However, our designs and the issues they talk about are far from that. Music is my inspiration. A musician can capture an audiences heart and really move people. Music is long lasting, and nothing near fickle. It may be an impossible feat, but I hope to merge what music is with fashion.

From where do you draw inspiration for your work?
As I said, music is a HUGE inspiration for me. Especially two bands in particular, Delta Spirit and Cold War Kids. They both breathe life into my creative soul. How flawed people we are, and how messed up our culture can be are other big inspirations. And of course the non-profits, they are always inspiring. 

What do you love most about what you do?
Definitely meeting all the people we do, all the awesome shows we take part in, the traveling, and working for our selves!

Why showcase at RAW? 
RAW is an awesome tool for up and coming artists and designers. They bring us all together in an effort to collaborate and help each other out, each entity bringing a necessary skill set to the event. Such a great concept.

Any poignant moments you'd like to share (hectic nights, disasters, mountain-peak highs)? 
I think our first trade show in Las Vegas was a pretty monumental moment for us. It was one of those moments that really has confirmed that we must be doing something right and people are digging it!

Any current rising stars within the genre that you would recommend we look out for?
Definitely, in no particular order: GAS'D, MNKR, ENTHOS, Tiny Whales, Hips and Hair, Dead Bury Dead