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The DLH Duo

Posted by Sarah Herrick-Smisek on

Our “About Us” section doesn’t dive very deep and we wanted to share more about our story and our background. We were so fortunate to have the Duluth News Tribune write up a great article on DLH Clothing a few weeks ago and the news about our company has reached many parts of the US!  This is great for us, but it also helped us realize that the people who don’t live here in Duluth or see us out and about, don’t really know who we are.  So please, join us for a moment as we start at the beginning . . .



Mike, our fearless designer, has been an artist since he was old enough to hold a pencil in his hand.  Check out the photos below that prove it!  Mike stays incredibly busy not only creating new designs and all of our marketing materials for DLH, but he runs his own freelance design company, Sek Designs.


Happy as can be to have a pencil and paper!


Mike painted this picture as a surprise for his 3rd grade teacher after her dog passed away.

Mike, at Rocky Top (Northfield, MN), the first place he designed and printed his first shirt at age 10.



Sarah’s talents and responsibilities are a bit different than Mike’s but they are the engine of the business. Sarah manages the daily operations of the company and takes care of shipping, inventory, event prep, and communications with customers and wholesalers. What she enjoys even more though, is managing our social media accounts. Creating interesting content can be a challenge, but it’s one she’s always up for! Although she often provides design ideas and inspiration to Mike, she can’t execute it without a his help and technical expertise.

Sarah rocking the double denim in Canal Park.


Behind the scenes: Taking inventory (in our tiny apartment). The unglamorous truth of a small business.



You can find out more about details about when and why we started the company here so we’ll leave you with some fun facts instead.

1. We met at a Gatsby themed party, planned by Sarah, at the Co-Lab in the DeWitt Seitz Building in Canal Park.

2. We love live music, pizza, craft beer and cider (Sarah has cider ideas that she wants to discuss with Bent Paddle and Vikre).

3. Just as much as we enjoy the many events happening in Duluth, we value the days when our shades are drawn, the couch is our island and we indulge ourselves with Chinese food and Netflix marathons. (We do also really like to eat veggies – we’re truly not as unhealthy as it sounds!)

4. Lastly, and probably the most exciting, is that we’re getting MARRIED!!  We are only 2 short months away from our big (quaint) day and we are looking forward to celebrating with our family and friends.

Our first trunk show at JaneCane Photography on Small Business Saturday.

Celebrating our engagement in Aruba.

Participating in the Canal Park Portage with Bent Paddle at Endion Station.


Starting this kind of business was completely new to both of us. We didn’t know what to expect, but the Duluth community (near and far) has been welcoming, nurturing and we’re grateful for each and every customer.  We’ve gained so many new friendships and working relationships, people who’ve trusted us and taken a chance on our ideas.  Thanks for getting to know us and for your support as we take this crazy journey!

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