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For the Love of Brands


From a very early age, I wanted to escape into the world of brands. There was something glossy and vibrant about the images in magazines, something captivating about the ads on television. Taken together with radio jingles they were larger than life.

My favorite brand at the age of four was Tab. Even though my mother certainly wouldn’t have ever let me try it, nor would she have been thrilled that her tiny, blonde daughter wanted to inhabit that world.

As I grew older, there were new brands: Dreyer’s, Jordache, Hawaiian Tropic (I hated people telling me I looked like the Coppertone girl), Virginia Slims (I never did smoke those), Cointreau, Campari, Herbal Essences…

You get the drift.

Throughout high school and on into adulthood I collected ads, cutting them out of magazines and hanging them on my walls. Some of the brands I loved enough that the day I could afford to buy them, I did. Like Diesel. It took me about eight years to finally buy my first pair of Diesel jeans after falling in love with the brand. It took about six months to develop a taste for Campari after sticking an ad of theirs on the wall. And I finally bought my first Volkswagen when I graduated from business school after all of those great Passat and Jetta ads in the mid to late 90’s targeting those of us in that last little segment of Gen X.

And then a conversation in one of my undergraduate Women’s Studies courses shifted my love of brands into a question: “If brands make people feel bad, why do people buy them?” Of course I’d experienced this plenty of times with brands. My body would never be a perfect, airbrushed hanger for clothes. I would never have that perfect home, serve that perfect dish.

I took this question to heart and it led me into a career in licensing in apparel. I got to build a portfolio of brands, trading on their cultural currency. I got to watch as Disney struggled in the mid to late 2000’s while corporate brands like Coca-Cola and Ford performed. Napoleon Dynamite and Angry Birds took the retail market by storm. I even got to bring Tab tees to market, wearing my Swarovski crystal Tab logo’d tee until it wore out.

And then I watched the middle drop out of the retail apparel market in 2008. Over the next several years I watched the world of creative, story-rich advertising become a world of spam emails and poorly written copy, commoditization and the downward, manufacturer-killing price spiral. Of course, with this there has also been a rise of new brands, locally made products, and all kinds of amazing technology that holds the promise of a simpler life.

All of this to say that it’s about time I start writing because I care very deeply about the state of brands and advertising and the ways in which they shape our culture, become markers of the state of our economy, and reflect our beliefs. Cheers.

Currently seeking new clients

2016 has been an exceptional year. Our founder and lead consultant, Morgan Ward, finished her first book under a pseudonym and is sitting with a potential agent.

This means, she is now ready to take on new clients.

Here’s a listing of the type of work she loves, aside from writing:

  • An ongoing competitive overview to ensure we know who has which licenses, what’s currently at key accounts, what’s being marked down, etc.
  • Outreach for potential properties.
  • Relationship management including any needs to update agreements to reflect new categories, channels of distribution, or basic renewals.
  • Drafting of a presentation decks and one-sheets for potential licensees or licensors.
  • Projections for potential licensing deals broken out by retailer or class of retailer or product type as needed.
  • Projections for current licensing relationships.
  • Any help needed in pushing through approvals.

Kitsch Cache Licensing Collective Announces deal between Gold Label and Artists of Rock

This new deal between Gold Label and Artists of Rock adds custom tees, fashion tops, hoodies and cell phone cases to the current assortment of art prints available on the site.

Gold Label business director Matt Reed is thrilled to have the opportunity to add depth to this collection with the addition of apparel and key accessories sold directly to the consumer: “The artwork comprised by the Artists of Rock is amazing!  Gold Label is excited to be part of this talented group’s growing merchandise program.”

The Artists of Rock program focuses on a select group of artists whose work, much of it originally created to promote rock concerts, is attracting a much broader audience. At times compelling, edgy, whimsical, and haunting, this collection of images showcases an on trend vibrancy that is as irresistible as it is varied.

The artists currently featured in the program are:


  • Dan Stiles
  • Mike Martin
  • Print Mafia
  • strawberryluna
  • Yvette Buigues
  • Zach Hobbs
  • Methane Studios
  • Jeff Kleinsmith
  • Punchgut
  • Alan Hynes
  • Steve “Maynard” Chastain
  • Nicole Anguish
  • Billy Perkins
  • Hernan Valencia
  • David Welker
  • Keith Neltner
  • Ron Liberti





About Gold Label

Founded in 2007, Gold Label empowers fans to choose from officially licensed original designs offered on tees, fashion tops, hoodies and fashion accessories.  As a licensee they are a true partner, providing social media marketing services and a seamless purchasing experience for consumers.

About Kitsch Cache Licensing Collective

Kitsch Cache Licensing Collective represents unique, culturally relevant licensed properties, manufacturers and anything in between. We pride ourselves on our ethics and those of our clients. Our services include business development, marketing, product development, agreement negotiation, strategy and competitive analysis.

For press inquiries, contact Pamela at or 510-435-2847.