John Pugh was born + bred in good ol’ North Carolina and his love for this state and especially our Oak City abounds. It’s been several years since I first met John on the Raleigh market scene. I mean, you can’t miss that big sparkly green truck!

What originally started as simply slingin’ a few clever tees to friends turned into something much larger for John and Jessica, owners of House of Swank. They grew from those early days in a t-shirt truck (think food truck serving up freshly printed witty tees instead), moved into a cool warehouse on the outskirts of downtown, and most recently opened up shop in a brightly lit storefront in the heart of the city.

The shop has an “open kitchen” kinda vibe. You can shop your fave tees, hats, and koozies while also watching the team crank out more — and often even customize on the spot. Fans and visitors come from all over to snag their fave graphics.


Well, at one of our recent Makers Mingle events, John casually asked about collaborating to feature area makers in the HOS space. And from there, we just sort of started making it happen!

Maybe you’ve been seeing some of our recent posts about the #RaleighGiftShop and also the party on Sunday, June 9th, to kick off this fun collaborative pop up. We’ll be featuring a handful of area makers in the shop on a regular basis — from pepper relish to vintage thermoses, with soaps and candles and maps of our fave city, our goal is to celebrate Raleigh, North Carolina, and the native talent that enriches the place we call home.

And in good ol’ swank fashion, we’re throwing a party to celebrate with music, more of our fave makers, drinks, treats, and good times. We’ll see you there, Raleigh!