Baylor student entrepreneur gives back through t-shirt business

By Igor Stepczynski | Broadcast Reporter

A college student is always in need of two valuable resources: cash and t-shirts. Baylor sophomore Lauren Gassel found a way to get both through some DIY creativity.

“I saw a bunch of acid wash shirts on Instagram, but I didn’t want to pay for that,” Gassel said. “I went down to the basement and found some bleach.”

Lauren Gassel is the founder and owner of LG Customs, a small student-run business that sells custom t-shirts. Most of the shirts come from thrift stores or from the bottom of student’s closets. No two shirts are alike, because Lauren Gassel makes each one by hand.

“My mom helped me realize how I could make this thing mine. I designed a logo, created some tags and personalized them with a message from me.”

Lauren promotes her shirts through her Instagram page, and she enjoys consistently posting new designs and taking orders. However, this small student-run business has a big mission behind it, which was inspired by her own little sister.

“My sister, Morgan, has Mitochondrial disease. It affects the mitochondria, the powerhouse of the cell, which is what gives you energy. It not only affects her cognitive and motor skills, but it also has set her back mentally. She’s always going to be dependent on either me or my parents. There is no cure for it right now, but the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation is where I will be donating part of the proceeds in her name and in her honor.”

Lauren has learned a lot through the process of starting her own business and hopes more Baylor students turn their ideas into a reality, even if they are nervous about it.

“I was definitely nervous at first. I didn’t know how people are going to perceive this or if I was going to get a good following or anything. If you love it, I would say just keep doing it. The people that matter will support you, and you’re going to be doing what you love.”

September 15-21 is Mitochondrial Disease Awareness Week. To learn more about The United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation, go to their website.

Lauren Gassel’s shirt designs can be found on the business’ Instagram page.