Stitches

Worth A Dang

They call it the Dang Chick Nation, and that legion of enthusiastic, online fans is part of what has made Georgia-based apparel company Dang Chick so successful. “The brand has really taken off,” says creator Stephanie O’Connor. “I think a lot of women can relate to it.”

Five years ago, O’Connor wanted to create a line of cool, comfortable T-shirts that would give women an extra boost of self-confidence and attitude whenever they slipped one on. Her husband, Tim, came up with the name: “When you walk into a room, you want people to say, ‘Dang chick, you look good,’ ” O’Connor explains. Though the brand is always coming up with new designs, the simpler, classic looks tend to be the most popular: a shirt with a large star that proclaims “dang cowgirl,” for instance.

In its first three years, Dang Chick doubled its sales volume every year. Now, Dang Chick is sold in more than 2,300 retail locations, and the company counts custom work as a significant part of its revenue stream. Dang Chick also has expanded beyond T-shirts to become a “lifestyle brand.”

What separates Dang Chick from other T-shirt companies out there is the fans. Women – from cancer survivors to mothers of special-needs children – share their inspiring stories and rave about how the brand helps them through the day. Dang Chick engages its 22,000 Facebook fans with fun contests, like asking women to send in photos sporting Dang Chick gear for a chance to win a free shirt. “We get hundreds of women sending pictures,” O’Connor says.