Design in Hi-Def

Manhattan Beach fashion entrepreneur Paul Goncalves co-launches a clothing line with instant gratification.

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  • Written by
    Darren Elms

Photographed by Kremer Johnson


In the era of Instagram and Snapchat, photos have become more than just quick memories; they function as a huge part of our daily identity. Food, landscapes, fashion, selfies … no matter the subject, our social feed chronicles the journey with every snap and spreads the message across our chosen channels.

Think about how much time you put into finding the perfect filter or considering the ideal crop. Too bright? Not enough saturation? Maybe a blue tint will help. Even with little training or experience, we’re testing the limits of our artistry with each post.

Sharing digital images on our smartphones may be rudimentary at this stage of the game, but wearing them proudly on a garment takes the sharing game into new territory. That’s where local fashion designer Paul Goncalves saw an opening—one where savvy social media users can create their own fashion.

Mod Thread is a new customization and collaboration platform that empowers users and brands to unleash their creativity. With a mobile app, users can create custom, all-over designs with a variety of cut-and-sew fashionable products. It’s as easy as uploading designs and photos from your phone’s photo album or another app like Instagram. Users can also turn digitally rendered prints and patterns into anything from a simple cotton tank to leggings.

Paul founded the company last year and brought on partner Johann Conforme shortly after. “Johann and I previously worked together at Saatchi & Saatchi and more recently Phenomenon, an ideation brand consultancy firm,” says Paul, who also launched menswear line Bespoken in New York and kids sportswear line Heroes & Hooligans here in the South Bay.

In the spirit of keeping it local, everything at Mod Thread is produced and sourced in Southern California. “We also work off an on-demand model, which means that an item only gets produced when a customer actually purchases it—which does away with excessive inventory and wastage,” says Paul. “All orders are fulfilled within three days.”

Ready to put your mark on the fashion world? Check out Mod Thread at the Apple App Store or Google Play.