The very beginnings of Grumpy Rat

Welcome to Grumpy Rat’s blog!

We are excited to share with you the story of how our apparel business came to life (mostly a story of our intern – Rihards).

Can’t really say it started with a vision, or passion, as an average business blog would try to tell you, those arrived later, as often happens in real life.

So how did Grumpy Rat come to be?

Grumpy Rat’s story began with an Etsy shop called Grumpy Goat. But no, it didn’t actually contain goat merch. Ok, maybe 2 or 3 T-shirts with goats but that’s about it. Generally, it sold alternative, gothic, and heavy-metal-inspired apparel. Although some sales were made, can’t say that a brand was made, or a core audience was established.

Grumpy Goat’s logo.

Drawing I used in the Etsy banner.

Still proud of this one!

And why is that? Probably because I didn’t feel any strong passion for the project. Although I really liked the logo I had designed, and that aesthetic in general. Some doubts started to kick in: “I’m I really suitable to run a business?” or “Can I even get motivated at all, if even this doesn’t work?” And it turns out, the answer was right in front of me the whole time. Remy looked at me and said “What are you doing man? Why don’t you draw us??? Someone has to!”

Honestly, it made me feel a bit silly for the efforts of the past. Why didn’t I start out with rat designs in the first place? Retrospectively, I can answer that precisely – believing what other people had told me about business, that I shouldn’t have believed in the first place – “You must pick a niche with a lot of potential customers” or “Make the designs so it would resonate with everyone!”. It sounded smart to me at first, but then I started thinking – supply and demand. General niches have much bigger competition, entering them without a fat wallet is complete madness! But I rationalize here, I simply wasn’t passionate about that.


“What are you doing man? Why don’t you draw us??? Someone has to!”


I was even suggested by one of the acquaintances to start selling cat merch through Grumpy Rat! No offense to cats, I just don’t vibe with you enough. Grumpy Rat will make rat apparel exclusively.

Initial rebranding wasn’t that hard. I tried to rebrand the logo to resemble Grumpy Goat’s logo. You might have seen it on a shirt, in the shop! This graphic was too good to waste, but too serious a logo as well.

This was supposed to be the GR logo. Now it has found it’s home as a rather cool T-shirt graphic! 🙂

This was supposed to be the GR logo.

Now it has found it’s home as a rather cool T-shirt graphic! 🙂

So I ended with the purple guy you all know. People have indeed complimented it a lot, even if it was made in 10 minutes as a placeholder. But shush, nobody needs to know that! It’s here to stay, however! 🙂

As for the designs themselves – most of them is still experimental and my style changes constantly. I experimented with vector-based designs as well as photo editing. But none of them feels as satisfying as digital drawing. It allows for a much more vivid expression of fur! In my opinion anyways.

One of the next big steps was the creation of an Instagram account. It almost feels too cliché to include it, right? But no, chances are, without the support I get on Instagram, I would have dropped working on Grumpy Rat on one of those many occasions when I feel disappointed about how the business is going. It’s the support of friends, family and all of you that got Grumpy Rat to where it is now!

Thank you so much for checking out the Grumpy Rat! Whether you come from Instagram, Facebook, or anywhere else, it matters to me a lot that you’re reading this! 🙂