Grateful Apparel was started by Raymond Rivera, better known as Grateful Ray. A big part of his testimony is being grateful for all the good things that God has brought to his life.
Profits from Grateful Apparel support the The 3Sixty Houses, a New York City transitional home which supports people getting back into regular life after facing homelessness, addictions, prison sentences, and other difficulties. Recently he spoke to us about the beginning of his company.
“When I got saved I wound up selling my big house because I couldn’t afford it anymore. I took the money, bought the building [for The 3Sixty House], and shortly after, maybe two years into The 3Sixty House I was running out of money.”
Rivera was having trouble finding finances to support his transitional house said that he is not the type of guy who wants to work a 9-5 job,
“so I kind of said this prayer, ‘God, you’ve gotta send me a bone again.’ About six months later I was swimming in my friend’s pool in Orlando, Florida, I jumped out of the water and said, ‘I’m gonna make some cool Christian T-shirts.’ That’s where it came from.”
Minutes after coming out of the pool, he drew the “Grateful” logo on a napkin, and Grateful Apparel was born. That was back in 2008, and know the logo is a common sight on the clothing of artists and fans of Christian hip-hop.
Grateful Apparel is a lifestyle brand influenced by rock, hip-hop, BMX, and skate culture. The apparel produced in urban streetwear tends to stem from these cultures, which entails the good, bad, and the ugly. Rivera saw the common thread among most brands in the industry and decided to go against the grain. Carving a lane, not specific to any genre, but a brand that highlighted gratitude, something every person could support and appreciate.
“I like to share my story and inspire people and go to detoxes and jails and speaking. I think Grateful [Apparel] is just something God put together to enable me to do the things he really wants me to do.
Grateful Apparel has collaborative clothing and apparel lines with Andy Mineo, Wordsplayed, and God Over Money Records. You may see some of your favorite rappers wearing a shirt or hat with the word “Grateful” across it in their music videos.
Visit their website here.