The latest trend in fashion has been models with famous parents flooding the runways at fashion week, but Daniel Neeson, 20-year-old son of actor Liam Neeson, is switching things up — instead of modeling the clothes he’s designing them.
After two years of preparing, his eco-concious clothing line, Pine Outfitters, is launching its first-ever pop-up shop in N.Y.C. from July 13 to July 19. And it doesn’t just look good, it does good too—for every item sold, the National Forest Foundation will plant a tree to support the environment. Talk about making a grand entrance into the fashion world!
As if creating a charitable business isn’t impress enough, Neeson is currently still a junior in college studying digital media and theatre and says he’s the last person who thought he’d ever get into the fashion design business. “Growing up this was honestly the last industry I thought I’d be apart of,” Neeson tells PeopleStyle. “I was a massive athlete. I loved to play sports like hockey and soccer, tennis and football and all of that. I always wanted to be a producer in the entertainment industry or a hockey player or something like that.”
But as luck would have it, he came up with the idea to start a fashion brand while he was just sitting in class. “For some reason I was sitting in class and I was thinking about this hat — because I wear hats everyday — and I was like ‘God it would be cool if I had a hat line but I don’t know how to do it. I don’t know if I’ll be able to achieve it.’”
He said he came up with the name Pine Outfitters because it mixes his appreciation for nature with apparel and after that, “It really stuck with me and I said ‘This is simple — I would love to investigate this idea.’”
Having had no prior design experience, he learned the inner workings of the business with the help of a friend in L.A. “This gentleman had a previous clothing line and he was kind of my way in. He showed me the ropes to the whole fashion industry.”
The hat is the brand’s core product, but they’re selling everything from jogger sweats, to shirts and sweaters retailing between $45 – $350 at the pop-up. If you can’t make it to New York, styles will be available on the website starting in September. “I would say Pine Outfitters is kind of a mix between Burton and Lululemon. So we want to have that fun snowboarder bro but also deliver a very classy style of clothing.”
That clever approach of sporty-meets-stylish is already working in his favor. Bravo’s Andy Cohen promoted the brand’s pop-up shop on social media and Daniel’s famous dad is, of course, one of the brand’s biggest fans. Liam wore Pine Outfitters during an appearance on Live with Kelly in December and talked the brand up backstage in the video, below.
“He’s been extremely supportive,” Daniel says about his dad’s involvement. “He’s been really really supportive of the wear. He’s been not just a supportive father but he’s been very supportive in terms of the business as well.” In fact, Daniel says he can always count on him for advice when it comes to particular styles.
But Neeson’s main goal for the company is all about giving back to the environment. He explains that the brand moto is to “embrace the wild side” because he wants customers to appreciate everything around them, including nature. “You know were in a changing environment, whether it be the environment itself, the climate itself or if you’re moving somewhere. You have to embrace the wild side,” the newly-minted designers explains. “Embrace who you are. Have fun out there. Nowadays it’s a very important thing that we must do to appreciate everything that we have, especially the outdoors, which is our priority. We all have to come together and do the best we can to preserve it and obviously save it, which is a long way off, but everything helps and that’s our main goal here.”
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Once the collection launches online, Neeson hopes to do more pop-up locations and visit college campuses around the country to show young entrepreneurs how to make a signifcant difference. He also has set his sights on building a permanent store location in the North East within three or four years.
If you’re wondering how a 20-year-old college student has time to be a two-time business owner (he also owns a landscaping business!), we are too. He says the brand relocated from California to New York to be closer to the Pine Outfitters team (who are all also in college). “I want to do as much as I can,” he explains. “Anybody can do anything if they put their mind to it. I just always want to be busy and have fun.”
If you want to get your hands on the collection, head to 121 Prince Street in N.Y.C. from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. through July 19.