As the line between the physical and digital cultural landscapes continue to blur, vintage clothing has now entered the fray with the help of a new venture co-founded by designer and Round Two Vintage creator Sean Wotherspoon and visionaries Nick Adler and Brennan Russo. MNTGE (pronounced “mintage”), their new web3 project, blends the excitement and creativity of web3 with the premium quality and history of the vintage market. MNTGE aims to bridge the gap between the world of vintage clothing and web3 by creating a global platform for enthusiasts to engage in conversation, be exposed to industry leaders and qualify for ongoing opportunities, drops and releases. To mint a priority pass means access to designer collection drops and the future MNTGE Market.
We spoke with MNTGE’s founding team in advance of their highly anticipated mint to chat all things vintage and web3, and what to expect from the trio’s new project.
How did the idea for MNTGE come about?
Nick Adler: For me, it all started when I was stopping by Sean’s retail store, Round Two, during the pandemic. As we know, the pandemic was rough for everyone, but there were so many young kids and customers buying these vintage tees out of his store. Snoop Dogg tees, Led Zeppelin, you name it. I asked Sean how much one of those T-shirts sold for and he said, “Easily around $2K, they’ll be gone by the end of the day.” I was dumbfounded when he said that, but he started explaining to me why it cost so much and what details and history on the T-shirt made it worth the $2K—the fading over the years, the content of the graphic on the tee, the brand make of the tee—all of these components provided worth and validity.
That was when a lightbulb went off in my head and I thought, “It would be incredible if we could somehow marry coveted vintage with digital to make something completely new and different.” Sean, Brennan and I have all worked together in some capacity in the past and knew of each other’s work in the fashion and talent industries. When this idea kept building over time between the three of us, we decided to jump on it. That was a year and a half ago and here we are now, launching MNTGE.
You’re working with one of the foremost experts in vintage clothing, in a landscape that is all about newness. How are you making vintage web3 relevant?
Brennan Russo: Through MNTGE and collaborations, we’re taking traditional fashion, art and design to the next level. We’re combining vintage garments alongside visionaries like Sean and his knowledge of fashion and culture with web3 to create an entirely new creative experience for the consumer, through the garment itself. It’s a vehicle for us to collaborate and connect with the consumer both in the physical world and in the digital world.
What types of perks can holders expect? Will Sean be dropping future NFTs? Will this token get people access to any of his web2 projects?
BR: The MNTGE Pass is our founding membership pass for the community. MNTGE gives pass-holders opportunities to interface with fashion history, cultural touchstones and rare collectibles that may otherwise be impossible for most people to own, wear or experience. This pass grants priority access to our designer collection drops and to the future MNTGE Market.
How did you determine that now is the right time for a fashion-forward project?
NA: A financial market can never be predicted or controlled, but conviction and confidence regarding an idea can be. We feel very strongly about the value that this project can bring to the masses. Vintage is also one of the fastest growing sectors in the fashion industry today. It offers shoppers and collectors a perfect mix of unique style, collectibility, heritage and sustainability—so we wanted to harness that and bring our ideas to life.
What was the biggest difference in working with something like this versus something that is more traditional?
BR: Integrating blockchain into anything can make for a longer process, but it’s well worth it. We’ve seen that creating art this way allows for people to verify true ownership of their assets, which is the way we see a lot of industries going.
Can we get some insider information for our readers about what is to come?
NA: We’re thinking a lot about the “pop-up experience” where we ask ourselves, “How can we create real-life experiences that are direct connections to the digital space?” We’re a brand first. We’ve created a really strong visual for it, and we plan to layer some of the coolest fashion technology that you may have seen—or may have never seen—before.
You don’t necessarily need to be a tech wiz to appreciate what web3 can be in your life
What do you hope the fashion and web3 communities take away from this project?
Sean Wotherspoon: An approachable connection to web3 in a new perspective, whether you’re already a web3 native or you’re someone coming in from the vintage or fashion world. The two are deeply connected and you don’t necessarily need to be a tech wiz to appreciate what web3 can be in your life. You can be a regular human and you can wear your denim jacket, and you can also wear it in web3. That’s super-approachable to me.
Hero image courtesy of MNTGE