Fredericktown, Ohio —Zach Myers grew up in Arizona, spent time in Los Angeles and was a farmer in Ohio, but for the past 16 years he's mastered the craft of denim, currently living in the village of Fredericktown.
- Zach Myers spent the past 16 years mastering the craft of denim and is the founder of Zace Brand, based in Fredericktown
- Zace Brand is the only denim producer in Ohio and one of only a half-dozen left across the country
- The company offers 56 denim products, all with American-made components.
“Looking back to some of the earliest days of my life, I remember being drawn towards the fabric of denim. And I have always felt like that was my calling, to make clothing. It felt like I could have an impact in people’s lives,” said Myers.
The industry has taken a hit ever since the denim market moved domestic production to Mexico and beyond following the enactment of NAFTA in 1994.
Myers' journey in Ohio began in 2003, soon after touring the last knitting mill in Cleveland that was closing its doors for good.
Inside he met a mechanic in his 80s, and the moment stuck with him.
“It was really heartbreaking to see, you know, this happening, as I was beginning to start what I wanted to do, which was my sewing facility, my denim factory. And ever since then, it’s been an uphill battle,” Myers said.
But as Myers will tell you, his passion and purpose prevailed—Zace Brand is currently the only denim producer in Ohio and only one of a half-dozen left across the country.
He works with members of the Amish community to produce 56 denim products — from jeans, jackets, skirts and bags. All of the fabrics, threads and hardware components are American-made.
“Once someone gets a product of ours, I think that at that point in time, the light bulb kind of goes off in their head, and they realize, oh, this is special, then usually they want to come back and try something else out,” said Myers.
While Myers makes products that have wide appeal throughout the world, he hopes Americans and corporations continue to invest in our country.
“I just think it would be fantastic if some of those multimillion, multibillion-dollar annual revenue companies would consider trying to reinvest a little bit of that into American-made products,” said Myers.
But for now, it’s back to the office for the father of two, as he tries to inspire another generation to help carry on a great American tradition.