Cleveland designer Aidan Meaney has ambitions beyond lucrative sales and upward mobility as he contemplates the future of Fund Surface’s ongoing fashion line. If Manny’s ultimate vision becomes a reality, Northeast Ohio will have access to closed-loop production, manufacturing and recycled materials.
“I want to have a fully functional facility here where every garment manufacturing process takes place,” says Meny, the 21-year-old founder of the fashion line, which is made entirely from plastic bottles and organic and recycled cotton.
“Our work isn’t done until I know that young designers from New York and Los Angeles are coming to make their stuff in Cleveland. When I see that happen, I know I’m done.”
For now, Manny sources its raw cotton from Texas and its bottles from both the Gulf of Mexico and a growing list of local municipalities. The Lakewood native keeps a close eye on the recycling process; His plastic bottles are cleaned and recycled using solar energy in North Carolina.
Meny’s unisex clothing line includes a jacket with a magnetic front closure and a quarter zip pull with a nickel zipper. Teasing the collection, which is made entirely in the US, a turtleneck and pair of pants each top is 90% cotton, with necklines made from recycled bottles. Apparel can be purchased online at the Fund Surface website, with prices ranging from $249 to $399.
Meny had a bit of a bump in late 2022, though, as business began to pick up. In November, the site at the ArtCraft Building (2530 Superior Ave.) was selected as the new headquarters for the Cleveland Police Department.
Found Surface has a new brick-and-mortar location at West 29th Street and Detroit Avenue in the Hingetown neighborhood that includes 750 square feet of retail and a 1,000 square foot studio.
“This is not just a found store,” Meaney said. “We’ll have an event space for fine artists galleries and brand owners. We launched Found Surface with a mission to strengthen a more competitive and successful art and design scene in Cleveland. There’s an element that can’t be done by me alone. There needs to be more boots on the ground.”