Hulu’s ‘The Curse of Von Dutch: A Brand to Die For’ has the director delving into the story behind one of the most iconic clothing brands from the early 2000s. The docuseries features three men who stake their claim as the founder of the company. Throughout the three episodes, the show explores the origin of the name and how these three men came to be involved with the brand. One of them is Ed Boswell. So, let’s find out more about him and where he might be today, shall we?
Who is Ed Boswell?
Ed Boswell is a Long Beach, California, native. After studying at California State University there, he worked as a concert promoter and forayed into the world of designing clothes. Ed remembered first reading about Kenneth Howard, later known by his moniker, Von Dutch. He said, “When I was about 16 or so, I saw an article about Von Dutch in the paper, and I was fascinated. It was actually just because, because he smoked pot … drank beer in lieu of food and never had a Social Security number, and did whatever he wanted and was a legendary guy. That sounded cool to me.”
Kenneth Howard was famous during the 1950s and early 1960s as a pinstriping artist who added his own twist to automobiles he painted on. A few reports state that after Kenneth died in 1992, the rights to the Von Dutch name were sold to Michael Cassel, a former drug dealer looking for business ideas. According to some reports, Michael and Bobby Vaughn bought the rights from Kenneth’s daughters. In 1996, Ed met Mike at a trade show, and along with Ed’s mentee, Robert Vaughn, they decided to begin a clothing line together.
The idea was to come up with apparel that would pay homage to Kenneth’s work. But there were differences in opinion within the group, with Mike and Ed constantly arguing. Ed later claimed that Mike forced him out of the company, who then took control of the brand with his brother, Donald. On the other hand, Mike denied it and said that he had come up with the idea. After Ed’s departure, Mike roped in Tonny Sorensen, a Danish investor who became the company’s CEO. While the company grew in popularity, it fell just as quickly, with both Mike and Bobby making unceremonious exits.
Where is Ed Boswell Now?
Ed Boswell has maintained that he was conned out of his interests by Mike. He claimed to be responsible for the clothing line and its concept but added that Mike took credit for it. Ed also stated that he never received any part of the sales and profits the company made by selling the apparel. Today, Ed runs a company called Boswell Design that does custom framing and provides vintage as well as contemporary art prints. The avid art collector still lives in Long Beach with his wife, daughter, and a pet cat.
Read More: Where is Bobby Vaughn Now?