Home Means Nevada
Jun 10, 2019 02:02PM
● By Leslie McCarroll
Left to Right: Jarred Barnes, Tiffany Lynn, Gabriella Madraso, Quinten Wiseman, Sam Crampton. Photo by Jeramie Lu Photography
“Home Means Nevada” – Nevadans know the saying well. Even the newcomers from California, Wisconsin, and the like embrace it, live it, wear it…there’s just something about Nevada. The beautifully designed HomeMeansNevada.com website captures it perfectly…
“We live simply here, but we do it in a big way. We're rooted in both the dust and blooming sage of everyday life and endless nights under neon skies. Born of a diverse lot brought together through long and trying odysseys in the wilderness. Out here, the weather changes every five minutes but it never disappoints. This is Nevada.”
And there is no more perfect brand that embodies all that is Nevada than Home Means Nevada. Bliss Life met with Scott Dunseath, Founder of Reno eNVy and now Home Means Nevada Company, to dig into the roots of a brand that’s undoubtedly here to stay.
BL: Why did you decide to rebrand to Home Means Nevada Co from Reno eNVy?
SD: The rebranding to Home Means Nevada actually started around 2 years ago when we re-designed our web site. We were selling a lot of Nevada themed t-shirts and we were getting orders from all over the state and we felt that there was a disconnect with our Nevada customers and our company name. There has always been a friendly rivalry between northern and southern Nevada and we did not want that to get in the way of any online sales of our products. Furthermore, from very early on we had always planned on becoming a Nevada lifestyle brand, at first we thought we would create a Vegas eNVy brand but we discovered that it was much easier to focus on one brand, Home Means Nevada, and create shirts that we could sell all over Nevada rather than make specific shirts for specific regions.
BL: Tell me about the origination and inspiration of the Reno eNVy brand and where and when did it start?
SD: I was on the phone talking to a friend and he asked me for my address, I told him what it was and when I got to the state I said N-V and he replied, eNVy? And we both kind of chuckled and said Reno eNVy….that’s funny. That was the ah ha moment and so we made some hats and a Jack Daniels knock off shirt, set up a tent at the River Festival in 2005 and sold around 60 units over the weekend. It was at that event that I realized that we had created something that people cared about and could have some traction.
BL: #battleborn has become a household name…is that something that you own and is it trademarked?
SD: We do own a few state and federal trademarks on Battle Born, Home Means Nevada and Silver State. I learned quickly the importance and value of Intellectual Property (IP) when I received a nasty letter from Jack Daniels. We had to stop selling our knock off shirts and pay them some money to make the problem go away. As a Nevada brand it is important to us to protect our business and keep our competitive edge, the IP has really helped to keep other Nevada themed companies out of our lane.
BL: Where can we find the Home Means Nevada brand? What local retailers besides the downtown location?
SD: We have two of our own stores, one being the downtown location on Sierra St, previously Reno eNVy, and the other in the South part of town on Foothill Rd in the South Creek Shopping center. Our website of course at HomeMeansNevada.com and a few strategic retail partners, including Scheels Sporting Goods, Silver and Blue Outfitters, Renown hospital, The Flag Store and the Big R chain of stores that service the rural areas.
BL: Who seems to be the major demographic and clientele of the Home Means Nevada brand?
SD: It really is quite a mixed demographic; I would say the 20-50 year old man or women who wants to be comfortable and fashionable, and who has a love for Nevada. Our customer base is really broad, if you have a passion for this state, then you most likely are one of our customers.
BL: Are you #battleborn yourself?
SD: Funny thing is, I’m not. I have strong Nevada roots, my great grandfather Harry Dunseath was Justice of the Peace in Reno, my Grandfather Gordon Dunseath started the Dunseath Key Company in 1932 and it is still around today in Midtown. My father was a doctor and moved to the Bay Area to start his practice. I grew up in Foster City and I came to Reno to go to college. I thought I would spend no more the 2 years here and then move back to California, but I absolutely fell in love with the lifestyle, the seasons and the people.
BL: What do customers say when they visit your downtown location?
SD: We have a wide variety of customers, in addition to our store we also serve as the Reno-Tahoe Visitors Center. We have a great partnership with the City of Reno and the Reno Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority (RSCVA) and we have served in this capacity since 2012. The tourists are usually looking for entertainment and things to do in the region, they always need a Reno keepsake, so we are happy to oblige with our assortment of unique gift items. And then we have our loyal customer base and these folks know that if they need a Nevada shirt, hat or gift item we have a great assortment to choose from. On occasion we hear that people don’t want to come downtown or there is no parking. That is one reason we opened our second store location, but I always laugh at the parking issue, our store is literally on the bottom floor of a parking garage and we validate for 3 hours.
BL: How long have you lived here and what are some the reasons you love Nevada…especially the beautiful Reno-Tahoe area?
SD: I have lived here since 1986, and spent a little time in San Diego and Seattle. I love the outdoor lifestyle, I’m an avid snowboarder and spend as much time as I can at Mt. Rose during the winter, I windsurf and kiteboard in the summer and Washoe Lake is an excellent place to do those sports. I love the affordability of the region, of course prices are rising but the cost of living compared to other areas is fantastic. I love the grittiness of the place and the Western history and I love the people and community. They say 6 degrees of separation but in Reno it’s only one, I’m going to make that into a shirt someday.
BL: What has been the response of the new rebranding?
SD: For the most part it has been fantastic, there are a few people that have pushed back and questioned our decision but as mentioned earlier this wasn’t a knee jerk reaction or a sudden decision. This was a continuum of a transition that was validated over time. We started with the website 2 years ago and then we opened our South Creek store under the Home Means Nevada name. Most of our advertising and all of our promotional materials have transitioned to Home Means Nevada. So changing the name of the Reno eNVy store was really the last step for us to completely move to Home Means Nevada. What we have learned during the process is that people care very much about the Reno eNVy brand and we have done our best to educate them that Reno eNVy is not going anywhere, we still make our irreverent shirts and we have a lots of other items that bear the iconic trailer logo on them. Reno eNVy has just become a category or sub brand underneath the Home Means Nevada Company.
Many thanks to Scott Dunseath and Home Means Nevada for their sponsorship of the Bliss Life Miss Reno Rodeo issue and feature reel. Get your Home Means Nevada gear online at HomeMeansNevada.com and use discount code: BLISSLIFE to receive 10% off your purchase!