KingPro is Changing the Fashion Game of the Music Industry

Dani Diarbakerly of KingPro creates dynamic custom designs for some of music’s brightest stars and up-and-coming artists. 

Dani Diarbakerly, founder and CEO of KingPro, spends most of her time in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The creativity that seeps out of the island inspires the approach to her custom clothing. 

“I’m not Jamaican; however, I live in Montego Bay most of the time and have a shop there. I just have an affinity for the island and the creativity that comes out of Jamaica,” says Diarbakerly.

One of Jamaica’s most beloved exports is its music, and KingPro has positioned itself as a company that runs in line with custom products musicians want to wear. Diarbakerly is a self-taught screen printer and graphic designer who has experience with Nike and had a feature in Hypebeast with Virgil Abloh. Her specialty graphics work has led to her being named one of the Rising Stars for 2022 by Screenprinting Magazine

“I wanted to be a writer and went to college for English,” says Diarbakerly, “I started a job copywriting for e-commerce stores, which quickly turned into learning how to build e-commerce stores, which then turned into creating products for e-commerce stores.”

Amid her e-commerce journey, Diarbakerly developed an affinity for t-shirt printing. 

“I loved how you could take an idea from the computer to a screen then onto a t-shirt in a matter of hours. There was no paint drying and no waiting. It was instant gratification, and I just fell down the printing rabbit hole.”

Diarbakerly’s company, KingPro, specializes in fully custom products and design services. KingPro also has a hand in brand development for artists and influencers. This creative journey has led to an easy transition to working with musicians of all types. 

“I work with a lot of various artists in music from Jamaica, including Chronixx, Jada Kingdom, Starr Dawkins, Squash, and Govana” says Diarbakerly. 

Along with the Jamaican artists she creates custom designs for, Diarbakerly has joined some artists on tour, offering her clothing as a compliment to the tour merchandise. 

“A lot of times when you are working with an artist on tour, things are sold rapidly,” she explains, “Certain styles take off more than others for different shows and tours. There’s a lot of intensity.”

That intensity can get stressful for the KingPro team. Often, the pressure of the road leaves little time for an artist to focus on merchandise. There are rapid changes requested and last-minute decisions to be made. Diarbakerly has learned well how to roll with these changes and keep one step ahead of her artist clients. 

When working with musicians, the graphics on the product are of the utmost importance, not necessarily the product itself. The graphics are part of a more extensive branding approach that helps promote the artist. KingPro produced t-shirts, sweatshirts, and hats for musicians featuring their custom branded graphics, which can differ from show to show or season to season.

“The art is a reflection of the music that they are putting out at that time,” Diarbakerly explains. 

Keeping up with inventory demands is one of the company’s most significant challenges when taking on a client that is on tour. 

“You have to plan for being in a time crunch,” she says.

One of Diarbakerly’s most exciting run-ins with the music industry was when Drake wore one of her designs in 2020. She has also worked closely with Diplo and musicians from Epic Records. Artists seem to gravitate towards the custom nature and creativity of the KingPro brand. 

“A lot of what I think makes KingPro different is that we try to go the extra mile,” says Diarbakerly, “I try to be an ‘add value’ vendor, and I make sure that my employees are value-added employees.”

Dani Diarbakerly is a creative entrepreneur who likes to “go big”, and courting the up-and-comers of the music world and the established stars is part of her “go big” strategy. 

“Zero in on what you want,” she says. “If you set your sights on something small, you will get a smaller reward. If you’re going to shoot for the stars, you will receive bigger and better results.” 

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