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Our Story

Tradewinds Studio was founded in 1991 when two sailors, Richard and Jessica, returned home to the Chesapeake Bay area. Richard and Jess decided to captain a new project and set up a screen printing shop in a chicken coop. Yes! an old chicken coop in rural Montgomery County Maryland. With a manual press and small electric dryer, beautiful designs emerged onto textiles. They began printing tee shirts for events and festivals around the Bay area. Tom soon joined his brother and Jessica in the adventure. After a 2000 piece print run on the manual press, they realized it was time to fly the coop and sail to a larger building.

The next stop in Tradewinds journey was in an old granary building located in Easton MD. It was also time to welcome aboard their new and much anticipated addition, an automatic press. The business was about to get easier and much more efficient, or so they thought. In reality, they found that the old wooden plank floor in the granary was not solid enough to stabilize the automatic press as it revolved. Maintaining print registration on a bouncy floor was more than challenging.

In 1994, it was time for the sailors to answer the call of the sea again. The business was transferred to Tom and the couple set off to sail around the world. Tom found a more suitable building and relocated the business to Elkridge MD. At that time Tom'’s wife, Beth, left her telecommunications career and joined Tradewinds. Her friends joked that she went from '“techno to rags'”. With Tom managing production and Beth managing the administrative and marketing side of the business the company continued it’s journey. As Beth’s role in the business grew, Tradewinds received the designation of a Women Owned business in 2007.

Tradewinds continued to grow and is currently in 14K+ square foot facility. If you ask them what is behind the growth, they would say hands down, it’s quality and customer service. Tradewinds fosters a mentality of Excellence that is reflected in the end product. The journey continues.

 

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