Dante Catanzarite felt that there wasn’t a clothing brand that represented him. So, he decided to do something about it -- he created his own business.
Catanzarite, a senior studying integrated media, is the creative director and founder of Inferno & Co., a British streetwear clothing brand.
Inferno & Co.’s motto is “Grit N’ Grind,” which means “simply doing something no one else wants to do, for the simple fact that you have to! We strive to seek out those people, the real Grinders of this world to provide quality, and style to their way of life,” according to the brand’s website. “‘Grit N’ Grind’ defines us and people like us perfectly. Work hard, play hard, but more importantly knowing who you are.”
Catanzarite felt that there was a group of men who didn’t have an audience or a specific clothing brand that represented who they were as people. He was inspired by his experience with playing rugby.
“And what I mean by that with rugby, and this goes for anybody, not just rugby, but they’re guys who go out there and they hit people for 60 minutes,” Catanzarite said. “It's a tough game, but afterwards, we go out (and) we drink together. And you know these guys, they're not just meatheads that are always in the weight room. These guys are into film, they're into design…I felt that these diverse people that were into multiple different things didn't have anything that would necessarily represent them. And I've always been into fashion. It's been a real passion of mine forever. And I just saw an opportunity where you know, there was nothing like it on the market. I went for it (and) took the lead to start my own business.”
The brand is unisex. T-shirts cost $25, the long-sleeved t-shirts are $28, the beanies are $16 and the limited-edition jacket is $60. The t-shirts, beanies and jackets are part of a new launch not yet available.
An Inferno & Co. logo is printed on company owner Dante Catanzarite's shirt, modeling one of the outfits his brand has. Photo by Nate Swanson
Catanzarite classifies his brand as British streetwear because British streetwear isn’t common in the U.S.
“You don't see that in Ohio, really anywhere in the Midwest,” Catanzarite said. “So, I thought it was also an opportunity to bring something unique to the market. British streetwear is more higher-end clothing. I want people to look good when they're wearing it. Not in the sense of it's a cool shirt or cool sweatshirt, but I want somebody to be like, ‘Wow, I can wear this…nice sweatshirt with some khakis and some boots maybe…’”
Inferno & Co. is a one-man show. Catanzarite designs the clothes himself in-house, but sources the clothes from overseas.
“I do everything myself and I put a lot of time and effort into it, and I do everything for a reason,” Catanzarite said. “I don't ever just design something just because. I want to explain why I did everything, and I chose everything. And I don't know if people are going to even care, but it's something that I just wanna do personally because, like I said, everything's got a meaning. I hope people see that in my stuff, that there's something behind it more than just the piece of clothing and the design.”
The intensity and passion Catanzarite has is apparent in the upcoming jacket launch.
In an Instagram post, Catanzarite explains his reasoning for connecting Skeletor with Jim Morrison.
“This is all I really care about right now in the sense of this has basically taken over my life in a good way….” Catanzarite said. “I just want to express the things that I love and share (them) with other people. And hopefully they can appreciate that back. It's a mutual thing. I try to give back to other people who like my stuff, and they give back to me by supporting me and buying my stuff in helping me through this process.”