Meachams open new custom wear store ‘Madison Made’ on Main Street
T-shirts, hats, cups and more show team,
(March 2020) – Featuring custom wear, local school spirit gear and the unique ability to have an individual shirt printed almost on the spot, Madison Made at 225 E. Main St. in Madison, Ind., is a unique T-shirt shop that is four years in the making.
What began as an online University of Kentucky fan wear site turned into a storefront for tourists and locals to sport T-shirts that support the Madison area. After several years of selling from festival booths and several months of a soft opening of their storefront, owners Nick and Dawn Meacham are ready for a grand opening beginning at noon Friday, March 20, and “we want the whole community to come and be a part,” said Nick Meacham.
As a former student of the University of Kentucky, Meacham integrated his love for their sports programs with his background as a freelance graphic designer in 2016 and opened Euclid and Woodland, an online shop for UK fans to get their spirit wear. Named after an actual location in Lexington, Ky., where UK fans would meet after a big win to celebrate, the shop filled a specific niche. But the owners felt that there was more they could do.
“The feedback and response from the UK stuff was OK, but we asked ourselves how we could move this thing forward,” Meacham said.
Photo by Sierra Moore
Dawn and Nick Meacham pose inside their new Madison Made store on Madison, Ind.’s Main Street.
Their own personal travel experiences became the way forward for the Meachams and their T-shirt business when they realized that they weren’t the only ones looking for souvenir apparel on road trips.
“You want something to take back with you – something so that you can think back on to those memories and those travels,” said Dawn Meacham, a physician at King’s Daughters’ Hospital. “It’s awesome for people from Madison to have local sports stuff and things like that, but I think that the vision for the shop is just that people can come in and take a piece of Madison with them.”
By the end of 2016, the couple came up with three custom T-shirt designs to try out so that people could do just that. After making huge sales during the “Stellar Madison” program, followed by three years of successful sales at booths during Madison’s Old Court Days, they were asked to be a T-shirt vendor at the 2019 Madison Regatta, and that’s when everything changed.
“From the very first experience I had with him as a vendor for us at Regatta, it was very good,” said local businessman Curtis Chatham. “The customers really liked them, and there was lots of good feedback on our T-shirt offerings in 2019. They sold out before the end of the weekend, and Nick was talking about opening up a storefront. I think that Main Street is very lucky to have him, and in the shop there’s always something for someone, whether it be hats, shirts, water bottles, whatever.”
“There’s really no other place to get T-shirts like this,” Meacham said. “The Little Golden Fox and others have awesome handmade gifts, but for T-shirts, there’s really no other place.”
Another aspect that no other place in Madison offers in-house sublimation printing. Sublimation printing is a process in which dye is infused via a heat press directly into the T-shirt material, rather than being screenprinted, which is why it is mostly limited to polyester. The benefit is that you can get custom T-shirts in smaller orders, say less than 15 “where it just isn’t worth it to screenprint. A lot of people actually prefer the look, too.”
Its partnership with Madison Consolidated Schools, Shawe Memorial High School and Southwestern Schools in Hanover, Ind., is one more way that Madison Made is showing local support. With each spirit gear sale, the coordinating school’s athletic program earns 10 percent.
“My son plays travel baseball, and we ordered close to $500 of spirit wear online (through another company) and hated every bit of it, so I was very excited to be able to go in and get what I needed (at Madison Made),” said patron Holly Ray Boldery. “I told Nick I would not be going anywhere else to get my stuff.”
Aside from the popular local apparel, Madison Made has tumblers, hats, mugs and will soon be featuring print posters and post cards designed by Meacham. “When we were planning everything out here, a lot of the selection and a lot of things that we were choosing we were trying to make sure that this would be affordable,” Dawn said.
In fact, everything in the shop is priced under $30.
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