Online retailer Loving WV is finding fans well beyond the state’s borders.
Written by Amanda Larch
What started as a “missing home” project for Evan Chapman while living out of state quickly became a passion and a successful business. Chapman wanted to represent his native state using designs of his own creation and, six years ago, Loving WV was born.
“There were tons of those generic designs out there, but there really wasn’t a lot of gear that I wanted to wear and represent my state,” he says. “So, I created it myself.”
Chapman advertised his designs on Facebook, generating a positive response. Since then, he and his wife have moved back to the Mountain State, and Loving WV has become an online retailer selling West Virginia-centric T-shirts, magnets, accessories, and home goods. Loving WV’s items can also be found in more than 50 stores across the Mountain State, from Tamarack to local mom and pop shops.
What has surprised Chapman the most throughout his business venture is the support West Virginia has for its own, as well as how far Loving WV’s impact has stretched. “You expect your friends and family to say, ’Great job, I like what you’re doing’ and maybe buy a couple stickers here and there, but once you get orders from people you don’t know, or you’re shipping stuff to New Zealand, Australia, or Europe, you realize everybody is there to support you and your company,” Chapman says. “They may not even know who the people behind the curtains are, but they like the brand and the design.” Don’t miss a new design—follow Loving WV on FB.
Loving WV recently released a West Virginia scratch map that features 28 state parks customers can “scratch off” after visiting, revealing colorful designs underneath. The map is available online and at each park represented on the map. Chapman hopes the maps encourage people to explore all the incredible state parks West Virginia has to offer.
Shop maps here.
Loving WV creates unique T-shirts—especially, Chapman says, its beer and wine collection. One fun shirt depicts the New River Gorge Bridge inside a beer can, and another shows Babcock State Park pictured inside a wine glass.
Shop T-shirt here.
Magnets Loving WV’s state park magnets are another customer favorite. These magnets are replicas of the actual park welcome signs they represent and are laser engraved into wood. Nineteen state park magnets can be purchased, from Blackwater Falls to Beartown State Park.
Shop State Park magnets here.