Elephanto x FatKidOnFire - Interview #22

Elephanto x FatKidOnFire

Interview #22

Right, so FatKidOnFire has finally sorted a job (paying many monies!), has got the ball rolling for Party #1 (keep 28th August free) and is still putting in the hours at the internship(s – if the others come through). Oh, and I’ve moved house! It’s been a busy few weeks. However, here at FatKidOnFire HQ we’ve still found time to keep the interviews stacking up. This next brand is another underground one-brain-behind-the-brand, which incidentally has just released a new line of pieces…

Find out more after the jump

I stumbled across Elephanto before they had released any of the tees and baseball top you’ll see below. I knew from the teasers that the line (that has now dropped) would be seriously strong and wasn’t disappointed when I finally got the look-in. I sat down with Chris,  the creative mind behind the brand to find out more…

Who/ what is Elephanto? Elephanto is a one-man show that began way back in the summer of 2006. I was 16 and had just started really focusing on my photography and artwork. I was becoming frustrated at not to being able to get my work out there for an audience to see so began printing up my own graphics on some blanks and giving them out to friends, from there its just snowballed into what it is today! 

Your tee designs are strong and striking – do they have an underlying theme or do you consider these designs to be your main brand image? Is it flexible? The name Elephanto is obviously represented by the logo and this is used a lot within the designs one way or another. But I like to keep an open mind when designing so do not force this brand image into every finished piece. I like to think this keeps the collection fresh and exciting, not a regurgitation of the same logo/ text over and over every release. 

What does/ will make your brand stand out and distinguish itself from the rest of the UK streetwear pack? I completely agree it is hard to be a cut above the rest and no one likes a flat out copy cat! Its about how you manipulate your ideas from wherever you may get them including what’s been done in the past to create new exciting designs.

But most importantly I believe you have to put passion into your work and what you create. Then you’ll be well on your way to achieving success as this is reflected in the outcome, from the design itself to the packaging its sent off in; it’s all your product an expression of yourself/brand.  

Who/what influences you in your work? Everything I see, hear, touch and smell.

What’s your take on the UK streetwear scene at the moment? You can moan and groan about the ‘scene’ but I’d rather be a little more positive as there’s a lot of independent homegrown brands out there right now, holding their own, doing their thing and doing it really well. Big up!  

Where do you see you and Elephanto being in 5 years time? I would like to see Elephanto keep rising to become a solid brand with a respected position in the game offering a range of products including Ltd cut and sew, something that is already in the progress of being achieved for A/W ‘10! 

Where can people expect to catch your work, any UK stockists to watch? At the moment I’m in the middle of getting a website put together for all my work including my photography and other artwork. From there everything will be available from prints to apparel.

For now you can pick up the S/S ‘010 line at here.

Alternatively, to see the goods in the flesh, go jam with my boy Ed at Snowlab in Knockhatch, East Sussex.

Top 5 favourite albums? I could never lay down a top 5 of all time! But here goes what I’ve been annoying the neighbours with recently.. 

  1. Son Of A Queen – Kill It With Love
  2. Black The Ripper – Black Is Beautiful
  3. Jehst – The Return Of The Drifter
  4. The Movielife – Has A Gambling Problem
  5. Taking Back Sunday – Tell All Your Friends 

Shoutouts Cj who has been lending a hand since day one in every aspect from shoots to stalls, my Mum for letting me rob up her spare room all these years and filling it with boxes! My girl who keeps me on track and tells me straight out when something just aint cuttin’ the benchmark! Odessa (model shown), one of the crew and a big producer (check him out on Myspace), Ed at Snowlab for stocking the gear, Dan and Sean at Urban Industry for keeping me looking smart and Jake Eelly at Loco Skates

Lastly and most importantly everyone who has ever bought a jacket, sweat, tee, hat, anything.. BIG love, you keep the dream alive.  

Chris has dropped a strong line of six tees and the 2006 Anniversary baseball tee. He’s got more in the pipeline (which sound dope) so it looks like Elephanto is going to continue going from strength to strength whilst releasing further sick pieces. The fact Chris is doing this on his own makes it more of a success story! If you’re feeling what Chris has had to say and like the look of the Elephanto tees, hit up the Bigcartel page (until the website drops) and cop these threads!