SUGAR GROVE – As the adage goes, if at first you don't succeed, try try again – and that is just what Sugar Grove resident Ben Popp did.
In 2015, he developed an app called Annie Teekr as an aid to those who shop for antiques and flea markets.
His new idea is an online store featuring his own, personal brand of nonsense called @PoppyNoncents.
Get it? Noncents – nonsense?
“It’s a humor brand,” Popp, now 28, said. “It’s T-shirts and mugs with different designs I create. … It’s a variety for everybody from millennials to baby boomers and gen y. It’s all inclusive. ..."I'm super-excited about it."
Customers can choose what they want his designs printed on, he said.
One of the sayings is, “Hugo first! Not me!”
And there’s, “If I had a nickel ever time I heard Tucan Tango.”
And, “Voyant like Claire. So There.”
And, “Break wind not the law.”
And the big toothy smile and a toothbrush with this advice: “Just brush the ones that show!”
Popp said he graduated from Benedictine University with a degree in business management.
And though he is currently working as a security guard, this online apparel store is what he hopes will take off.
“I was always fascinated with entrepreneurship and a love for nonsense,” Popp said. “I always thought I’d try to make a career out of it when I graduated.”
His designs and pithy sayings are all his own original designs.
“I don’t pay to license any protected designs,” Popp said. “Mine are all trademarked.”
Popp said he studied graphic design online, took advantage of various programs offered and studied successful designers.
“Anyone can do it, if you have the will to learn it,” Popp said. “This is my passion.”
Having just launched his apparel line two months ago, Popp said he hasn’t sold anything yet.
But he is hopeful his brand of light humor will take off once he works out a marketing plan.
“I have popular themes, mainstream themes and I try to have a diverse group of topics that I cover,” Popp said.
Popp's shirts can be found online at www.redbubble.com, an online store featuring work by independent artists.