Howdy! I'm Dan Lambert from Yorktown VA. I created Tie Dye Dan as my personal brand then Dye Happy as my clothing brand. This is my pursuit of happiness.
Dan • The Early Years
When I was young my Mom, the artist, kept pushing me to do something artistic. I picked tie dye. It was easy, I could make a mess, and make Mom happy. I didn't plan to, but I started getting into it.
I started making some nice shirts and friends would offer to pay me to make shirts for them. I liked the idea, but I was lazy and said No.
Tie Dye Dan • The Idea
The idea came to me in the Summer of 2016, a year before Dye Happy, while working a double split shift at Chipotle.
I heard Dr. Peter Venkman saying "Janine, someone with your qualifications would have no trouble finding a top-flight job in either the food service or housekeeping industries." I thought I need to figure out how to make money doing something I actually enjoy.
Feeling optimistic I bought a pack t shirts and a tie dye kit. I started wearing only tie dye and people recognized me as Tie Dye Dan. I posted my tie dye on Instagram and started getting online orders.
Dye Happy • The Brand
Spring 2017 I created the Dye Happy brand and started applying it to my tie dye with a heat press. The response was crazy. Everyone loved it.
That Summer I applied to be a vendor at Harrisonburg Farmer’s Market They said a local non-farm vendor with some color and energy seemed like a good idea.
That Fall I got some free publicity in the JMU Breeze newspaper, JMU student known as 'Tie-Dye Dan' gains' popularity. Then I got some more in The Virginia Journal, Tie-Dye Dan” Transformed His Hobby Into An International Business.
Dye Happy and Kendama
Winter 2017 I applied to be a vendor at Battle at the Border 2018. My good friend Chad Covington, Sol Kendamas, waived the vendor fee and I made the event shirts.
Insane! My first kendama event and I'm making the event shirts and competing. I bombed, but my new friends, some of the best Kendama players in the world, became my Dye Happy Family
Dan • The Businessman
Winter 2018 I setup this website with help from fellow JMU Society of Entrepreneurs (SOE) member Chris Ashley and I applied to JMU's Summer Venture Accelerator Program and was accepted.
Summer 2018, JMU paid me to develop my business. Later, my association with the program got me a meeting at Life is Good, the company I aspire to emulate.
January 2019 I went to Boston and met with Life is Good founders Bert and John Jacobs. It was insane. Bert and John both said "If you think this is going to be easy or quick, do something else".
Spring 2019 I start applying to arts and craft festivals and music events. Now I spend my weekends out of town building the brand. Life's a journey and I feel like I'm going in the right direction.