It’s one thing to order T-shirts with your company, club, or school name emblazoned across the chest. It’s another thing entirely to gain brand recognition for your organization with a distinct logo design appropriate for a broad spectrum of promotional products. Budd Bay Promotions & Apparel is happy to help local groups do both, and they have both a world of experience and a world of products available to help local groups put together successful promotional campaigns.
Budd Bay is a family business. Owned by John and Lynn Grantham in partnership with John’s brother Tom, it has been a staple in the Olympia area since 1996. While Tom was working in sports apparel and starting Budd Bay in the 90s, John and Lynn were gaining valuable experience in the Silicon Valley, developing promotional and incentive products for a variety of clients, including a number of Fortune 100 companies. About twelve years ago, the couple moved to the Olympia area to be closer to family, and bought into Tom’s business. “We merged his background with sports and embroidery and our corporate and promotional product background,” explains John Grantham. It has proven to be a profitable partnership.
After leasing a large warehouse space for many years, Budd Bay recently relocated to a more visible storefront in Lacey. “We moved from a more production driven facility to more of a showroom driven facility that’s easier to find and get to and it’s really helped our business,” says Grantham. Rather than wading through an on-line catalogue, customers are able to come to the store, located at 6906 Martin Way, and actually handle a variety of products.
Grantham knows that given the variety of different textiles for soft goods and the infinite variety of promotional items available, giving customers the opportunity to get their hands on a product can make a world of difference. “There’s no way to experience that on-line,” he says of his web-based competitors. “I think people really want to touch and feel and see how that logo looks decorated in a certain way.” Budd Bay has thousands of examples and stock apparel samples available in their store. And if they don’t have it in stock, they have access to countless suppliers and can help clients find just about any product they’re looking for.
According to John Grantham, more than half of their business is in apparel like T-shirts, sweats, and other soft goods like hats and soft sided luggage. Budd Bay decorates products using various techniques. Everything from silk screened fan-wear for fund raising projects, to embroidered logos on corporate apparel, to dye sublimation for sport team uniforms is possible. Depending upon the process, decoration is either done in-house or through a sub-contractor.
The balance of the business lies in promotional products. You name it; Budd Bay can get their hands on it. Traditional products like pens are always available, but if a company wants to reward employees with a branded incentive item, or if they need a unique give-away for a trade show, Budd Bay has access to thousands of products that can be imprinted with an organization’s logo, slogan, or event. “More than anything if you look through our showroom versus any of our competitors you’ll see more creative applications – whether it’s a pen or keychain or whatever. We’ll do the packaging. We’ll do the whole look and feel and go beyond just putting a logo on a product.”
Good logo design is crucial to successful merchandizing according to Grantham. If a client doesn’t already have a working logo, Budd Bay is happy to help them through the design process. “We’re working with artwork all the time. We’re kind of an inexpensive ad agency in that way because what we’re interested in doing is getting the logo to work well on the product.”
Sometimes a client’s existing artwork has to be modified before application. And every design has to undergo some sizing or manipulation before use. “Most people have a logo but we have to adapt it to whatever product it is going on. The advantage we have is that we are applying it to things, and we know what will work (for application) versus just what’s going to look good on paper.” This know-how has led a number of clients to completely change an existing logo to a more streamlined version Budd Bay’s in house graphic artist has designed for them.
Taking ideas a step further is the hallmark of Budd Bay. In addition to adapting a logo to a product, the Granthams want to help clients marry the product to the event, occasion or purpose for which it is being produced. They specialize in asking “Why?” and then helping put a twist on a idea – branding it – so it is unique and not just another pen with a company name slapped on. Lynn Grantham explains, “There are so many things we can do. We try to get people to do things that are a little bit more unique and different to kind of set themselves apart.” For her and the rest of the team, bringing a creative element to the table is important. She enjoys walking clients through the process, “Taking (them) from the very beginning concept right through to producing it on products.”
Budd Bay has it all, and they have an experienced team ready to help you design it.
Budd Bay Promotions & Apparel is located at:
6906 Martin Way East
Lacey, WA 98516