She's what everyone is wearing. A t-shirt maker’s fine designs give Yellowknife a new style.
Sarah Erasmus hates it when she’s rocking a wicked t-shirt and sees someone else wearing the same one. Which is ironic, since she’s making a name for herself in Yellowknife as the head of booming screenprinting company Erasmus Apparel. “I want to make the most kick-ass t-shirts for other people,” says the 25-year-old entrepreneur. In the back room of her new store, Erasmus cranked up Ella Fitzgerald, put her feet up and talked business with Up Here.
UH: Where’d you get the idea for your company?
SE: It wasn’t my plan to come back to Yellowknife and live. I wanted to make movies and go to film school in Vancouver. But I realized I loved graphic design. It was a big decision. I came back here to do screenprinting and start my own business.
UH: Did it make you nervous?
SE: Oh for sure! There’s still days where I’m like, am I nuts? When I’m by myself trying to figure things out – it’s definitely been a learning process.
UH: What’s your style?
SE: I go for a rough, edgy, vintage look. I’m not a perfectionist at some things in life. If it looks sweet, let’s do it.
UH: What’s next?
SE: To get into signs and digital printing. I’d like to branch out more into the different territories than down south. It’s what we’re more familiar with. I’ve done work in Whatì, in Fort Providence. I’ve got a job coming up in Nunavut. We live here because we love it. I want to make designs so you’ll be like, “Sweet, it’s made in Yellowknife by someone who knows what Yellowknife’s about.”
UH: What’s your favourite shirt?
SE: A green Police t-shirt. It’s been worn to almost nothing, it’s raggedy and got holes all over.