July 1, 2016

Intermittent clouds

Boy attracts Duck Tape’s attention for custom wallets

Some ideas just stick.

For 12-year-old Dominic Drockton, crafting one-of-a-kind Duck Tape brand duct wallets is something that stuck instantly.

Dominic Drockton, 12, in the middle of recreating the Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival’s logo. (PHOTO PROVIDED)

“I saw a video on YouTube and I thought, ‘Hey that looks cool,’ ” he said.

Now, Dominic has been making wallets for more than a year.

He said the first wallet he ever created took him about an hour to make, but after making about 150 he has cut his time in half.

“It was pretty tricky to figure out how to make it without any wrinkles or fold over lines,” he said.

Each wallet is unique: some are multicolored, others have popular sports team logos on the front. Even musicians such as the Beatles and Justin Bieber have been featured in his designs.

He has become so good at designing wallets that he has grabbed the attention of the makers of the popular tape.

A family friend brought a wallet Dominic made that had Manco T. Duck — the brand’s mascot — emblazoned on one side to the Duck Brand offices in Avon. The wallet made it to the desk of Patty Sack, the assistant communications manager with parent company ShurTech Brands.

“I definitely saw something in Dominic’s work that you don’t see every day,” she said. “So when I commissioned him to make wallets for us, he rose to the challenge.”

Sack said that Dominic spent his entire spring break making 40 wallets for a Duck Tape “pop-up store” set up temporarily on 40th Street and Broadway in New York City.

His wallets sold out in days.

From there Duck Brands named him the featured artist for the Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival in June.

The company commissioned him to make a duct tape recreation of the festival’s logo and again, he rose to the challenge.

When Duck Brand offered him supplies to practice with before the festival, Dominic said he didn’t need to and that he would just do it when he got there.

He sells his wallets at school, the flea market at the Medina County Fairgrounds and the Posh Peacock on Public Square for $5 to $10 — a modest price for a well-crafted designer accessory.

He also has his own YouTube channel called Dominic’s Wallets where he showcases his newest creations and gives tutorials on how to make the wallets.

As a budding entrepreneur, Dominic was featured this month in a Wall Street Journal story on pre-adolescent “tweens” and the new ways they are creating crafts. He is expected to be the subject of Wall Street Journal feature story later this year.

His father, Dan Drockton, is proud that his son found a way to express himself.

“It is so hard to explain how good he is at it,” he said. “For a 12 year old it is truly amazing.”

Dominic approaches the future with a youthful optimism.

Asked about his plans, he said, “I don’t know. Just keep making them and see what happens.”

Contact reporter Andrew Davis at (330) 721-4050 or adavis@medina-gazette.com.