Bonfire Effect
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Where There’s a Will, There’s a Pine Printshop

Read time 2 min
Fort Collins’ Pine Printshop launched an innovative business solution during the COVID-19 pandemic that also helped small businesses survive.
Where There’s a Will

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With the Center for Distanced Shopping (CDS), Pine Printshop shows its water-based stuff.

Note: This post is part of our B ON FIRE campaign to highlight brands and individuals in Northern Colorado doing awesomely creative and generous things during the pandemic – like The Moot House. Follow us on social media using the hashtag #BonFireNoCo to get inspired and to share how you’ve seen companies and individuals – including yourself – B ON FIRE.

Garrett Danielson, owner of Pine Printshop in Fort Collins, doesn’t like playing by the rules. Exhibit A: he started Pine in his garage when he was still in college. Exhibit B: Pine only uses water-based ink because of its superior quality – even though the majority of printshops uses plastisol-based ink. When the social distancing response to COVID-19 furloughed normal business activity, he didn’t think that would be a good time to start following the crowd, either.

Instead of playing it conservative with a skeleton crew waiting out the stay-at-home and safer-at-home phases of the pandemic, he launched the Center for Distanced Shopping (CDS).

The CDS – with a logo that, ahem, borrows heavily from Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s logo – is a merch-hosting platform for “small businesses, artists, and bands affected by COVID-19,” according to Pine’s website. Businesses, bands, and others looking for an additional revenue stream during the pandemic add their merchandize designs – usually t-shirts – to the platform for two weeks of pre-orders. After the pre-order period, Pine prints what’s sold and ships directly to the consumer. Each shirt is $25, and Pine cuts a $10 check for the business or creative entity.

“It’s the only means of income for some of these people,” Danielson said. “I get really excited about writing people checks.”

The merch platform allows Danielson and his slimmed down crew to stay open while providing a lifeline to small businesses. “It’s served a need,” says Danielson. “Making t-shirts isn’t that big of a deal, but we wanted to use our resources for those who need help.”

As of this posting, more than 30 businesses have used the platform to sell merchandise, and Pine has generated more than $15,000 for small and local businesses. Danielson is encouraged by the success of the model and thinks it could continue into a post-COVID world.

But the best part for Danielson? “I beat the federal government to getting checks in people’s hands. That’s pretty bad-ass.”

Here’s to creative bad-assery. Keep an eye on the CDS for some B ON FIRE merch in the near future!

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