"I think we moved to Denver for the same reason a lot of businesses move to Denver -- the outdoors, the weather and the accessibility of everything. It is easy to get around," says Machete. "Living in New York, we hardly were ever outside of the city. It's like that joke about how people never leave their borough for their whole lives -- which is totally true. Being able to see the mountains and big spaces really changes your outlook on life, and I feel like Denver is really a positive place to live."
Visiting Denver many times over the course of Machete's tenure in New York helped finalize the decision. "In a way, I had all of these friends who were artists in New York who were struggling to pay their rent and struggling to compete in the art world," he explains. "I thought that the struggle to make art and compete with other artists was really stifling people's creativity -- everyone was so focused on getting ahead that there wasn't the same level of focus on the art. What I saw in Denver was different -- because the rent was lower and because the competition wasn't all focused on a centralized art world, people were just being creative."Machete is the person behind the Denver Bespoke brand, which creates custom, one-of-a-kind suits -- a relatively lost art in the world of contemporary fast fashion. Lianna K. works from a similar angle, creating unique gowns and other pieces of women's apparel. In their studio in Globeville, Denver Bespoke and Denver Dressmakers employ eight full-time seamstresses, all working on mid-twentieth century sewing machines combined with a modern-day computer system that stores thousands of patterns and custom details.