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Ugly Apparel, Local Artist Kelly Meissner Releases Clothing Line with Funding from Local Organization for Innovation in the Arts

Ugly Apparel has an innovative and eclectic fashion collection for those looking to experience the way that tattoos enhance the human form or set off their current ink.

The Philadelphia-based company is the quirky brainchild of Kelly Meissner, a University of the Arts graduate and former tattoo artist, who was looking to push the sartorial limits with new design and original techniques. She started with regular T-shirt prints, then decided to experiment with placements and practice, combining her love of inventive design and the personal self-expression found in tattoos. Soon, her T-shirts evolved into a clothing line that combined quirky aesthetic, innovative design, and environmentally friendly materials.

Kelly started designing T-shirt’s for Kotis Design, an apparel decoration company based in Seattle Washington. The more she learned about apparel decoration processes, the more she wanted to push the limits. She began working with printers and manufacturers to expand the limitations of printing on sleeves. Together, they made it possible for her to combine her experience as a tattoo artist with her clothing designs and Ugly Apparel was born.

Since its inception, Ugly Apparel has been involved in local fashion and manufacturing incubator projects that blend street style with ethical fashion creations.

The company recently launched a Kickstarter campaign [] to pursue producing sleeve wraps and tees at quantities that will allow it to sell them at reasonable retail prices. This funding also will allow the new designs to be manufactured in Philadelphia, as well as enable Ugly Apparel to continue its mission of creating sustainable clothing using environmentally friendly materials.

Incentives for contributing to Ugly Apparel’s Kickstarter campaign include sticker packs, exclusive tees, and prototypes from the knitwear and house wears that are in development as incentives for funding the expansion of the line.

Ugly Apparel has partnered with, and is sponsored by, the creative minds at The Corzo Center for the Creative Economy, Wells Fargo, and Yards Brewing.

For more about Ugly Apparel, visit

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