Forbes unveiled their prestigious 30 under 30 2022 list at the start of the year. It’s an annual compilation of 600 individuals that have been leaders in their industry. It profiles stars in the worlds of sports, entertainment, music, and fashion but also details lesser-known individuals in retail, science, healthcare, and much more. Under the Arts & Fashion section lies 29-year-old Mitch Purgason, a Charlotte clothing designer that has decorated the likes of Mark Cuban, Gary Vaynerchuk, Josh Gordon, George Kittles, and Bubba Wallace. With one-of-a-kind items that total up to $20,000, we find out what made the “Stitched by Mitch” founder so successful.
Purgason’s road to widespread recognition is paved with hard work and precise attention to detail. He grew up in Greensboro and attended Appalachian State University, where he started his clothing business as an assignment. His entrepreneur class required him to start a business, which he started with two fellow business students. He decided to build affordable custom suits for college students. By taking design classes, researching fabrics, and learning from a professional tailor, Purgason founded Stitched by Mitch.
As for his celebrity clients, Purgason owes much of it to his connections in sports. During his time at App State, he walked onto the basketball team during his junior year. It allowed him to connect with former App State athletes that made it to the NFL. Although he didn’t get his first NFL client until 2019, word of mouth has done wonders for his business since then.
His suits usually feature unique Milanese buttonholes, textures from around the globe, and his signature inscription, the Italian phrase “una razza diversa,” which means “cut from a different cloth.” Further enhancements depend on the client, ranging from personal suit linings to meaningful quotes hidden under the collar. In an interview with Business North Carolina, Purgason details having in-depth conversations with clients in order to personalize their custom pieces.
“I want to know as much as I can about the client. I ask questions to help me understand their personality, their association with color, and what they want to exude when they are wearing clothing,” said Purgason.
His particular brand of work allows him to create some lavish pieces. He recently made a teal leather bomber jacket for Cassi Smith, wife of Speedway Motorsports President and CEO Marcus Smith, to complement her teal G-Wagon.
Although his suits are his bread and butter, Purgason prefers not to be labeled as the “suit guy.” In fact, he has branched out to beachwear, golf attire, shirts, leather jackets, and more. Purgason is currently enrolled in a luxury fashion management course, which concludes next year with a four-month tailoring course in Italy. He is also developing a design TV show with an unnamed high-profile celebrity.
“I’m always trying to improve,” said Purgason, “and you have to be willing to inconvenience yourself to grow and learn and provide a product you’re really proud of.”