Grits Co. is a Southern inspired brand from Houston,Texas that is widely known for its detailed representation of the Southern experience in an unapologetic way. The company slogan is simple, “No Grits No Glory”. It is a reminder to never give up on your dreams in life and to give your whole self to get the hard work done.
This Mom and Pop shop (Reuben & Toya Levi) have been putting their creative spin on T-Shirts with a growing following known as the "Grits Tribe". After taking a little break for family, the new age vision had only grown stronger. The vintage inspiration has helped form Grits Co.'s well known mascot "Roscrow".
We wanted to create a brand that was not just one dimensional. So we use the words and narratives of our southern lifestyle that inspire us. There is a similar experience we get from the look and feel of vintage garments and products… these stories go beyond just the thread and fiber. The vintage products and fabrics became the perfect canvas onto which we juxtapose our modern narrative.
We believe every garment should tell the story; whether its hand crafted in the USA, classic bold imagery, hand chain-stitched lettering, to the vintage feel shirts made from dead stock heritage fabrics with subtle imagery from 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s. Those stories remind us of a simpler time when anything is possible if you just dreamed it. All you need is some grit to make it happen.
We knew going into starting a new company we would have to be open for critics and taking a lot of risk. While some believe there are so many reasons not to take risk, my theory is being safe is risky, being mediocre is risky, being average is being risky. So live life with the risk and keep grinding hard at what you believe. Be utterly unsympathetic about pursuing your freedom and setting realistic goals to capture your dreams. It’s your freedom that will get you to where you want to go. I believe from having this outlook, our brand has been able to capture the true American grit of working hard and living the "Gritty American Dream".
Well for us Grits is hard work. The push that you have in life to give it all that you got. But for many "Grits" are also known as a food. Grits are coarsely ground corn, traditionally a breakfast cereal. Though grits have a rich tradition in the South, they are not only eaten by Southerners. People around the country are finding the great uses and taste of grits. Turner Catledge, former editor of the New York Times, called grits "the first truly American food." Grits date as far back as 1607, when the colonists came ashore at Jamestown, Virginia. Grits are a good source of calcium and iron and have no fat or cholesterol. For breakfast, recipes like cheese grits are made. But for a more substantial dinner meal, Southerners rely on shrimp and grits, where the shellfish bulks up the grits.
With the longevity and deliciousness of Grits it made it easy when naming our brand after a southern staple.
As an icon we wanted something that represented the south inspired lifestyle. We chose the crow for its obvious nod to the old and new south. In prior the image of a crow had a bad annotation of black stereotypes and fear. We wanted to give its true nature back. The crow is clever, smart, social and resilient. Most of all they will cooperate with each other for the benefit of the whole flock.
I love cartoons from the 30’s and 40’s rubber hose animation, so I created the crow in that style. After creating our crow, we asked the Grits fans to name our mascot in a contest. The fans were very enthusiastic, but the name that won was Roscrow. He is a strong crow amongst crows and a very fun character that we like to put in different situations. We are able to capture many different looks for Roscrow that we continue to develop as he grows with "Grits".