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How this Vancouver pro youth soccer player became a clothing designer (VIDEO)

From pitch to stitch. ⚽ 👕

In early 2020, Vancouver's Nicolas Budisa was on top of the world.

The 20-year-old was playing youth soccer in Portugal after being a member of the Vancouver Whitecaps residency program and Canada Soccer.

Everything changed once COVID-19 hit. He was just days away from pro tryouts when lockdowns began.

Budisa returned home to B.C. and fell into a funk like so many other people dealing with the pandemic. Depressed and with little money, he made the best of a bad situation. 

The youth decided to create an original, independent clothing brand despite having no business or retail experience.

Our Block Clothing launched last July; less than a year later, the line has generated over 300 sales and garnered more than 1,700 Instagram followers.

"It was all new, it was all foreign to me; so I had to just learn from the bottom," says Budisa.

The apparel includes t-shirts, sweatshirts, hoodies, sweatpants, and shorts - all with a distinctly Vancouver vibe.

In an effort to give back to his Champlain Heights community he also donates one dollar from each sale to help his local area in various ways.

Everything from "donating sports balls and equipment and shoes, and partnering up with community centres like Champlain rec. centre," explains Budisa.

While his dreams of professional soccer may be fading, the young entrepreneur continues to grow his brand and support his neighbourhood.