I love independent brands. FatKidOnFire is testament to that. There’s something about the D.I.Y. ethic that exemplifies everything that’s right with streetwear, or any other industry for that matter. This next brand is one close to my heart, and is a prime example of an independent brand doing it 110% right…
Find out more after the jump
Suffoca is the ultimate one man brand. Boyce runs absolutely everything (with a little help from his friends) and lives, sleeps and breaths Suffoca. His fun and detailed designs are both unique and memorable and luckily for us, his latest product release dropped at the start of July. In it you’ll find some seriously fresh tees, vests, crews and hoodies for both genders. I sat down with Boyce to find out more…
Who/ what is Suffoca? Suffoca is an independent, artist-run brand; showcasing a collection of unique characters and what they get up to. Hand drawn and screen-printed, I keep to some traditional raw processes, which help me push the designs and my work as an apparel product.
I run Suffoca alone from artwork, promotion, sewing labels, packaging etc, but with a strong support from fans and friends, which helped and continue to help shape the brand in to what it’s become today.
Your designs are strong and striking – do they have an underlying theme or do you consider these designs to be your main brand image? Or is it flexible? You’ve also dropped more than tees; selling fitted hats, hoodies and crews. Is this something you will continue? The designs all have subliminal messages or a story behind them, most show a character experiencing or expressing that message. For example, the Holysmokes shirt was based on the idea that time flies when you’re having fun, which is kind of a thank you for letting me do what I do. I love to draw and create and I wanted the message in a image form to be picked up by people who enjoy themselves and have fun. As Dr Seuss said “If you never did you should. These things are fun and fun is good”.
The products are progressing with the company’s growth. I have buckets full of ideas I would love to make, so you will have to just wait and see what pops out next.
What does/ will make your brand stand out and distinguish itself from the rest of the UK streetwear pack? I recently read a review of my brand by a fan and he said “I think the most refreshing thing about Suffoca is that it’s not afraid to be fun in a ‘streetwear’ scene where pretentiousness is rife. This brand is the definition of D.I.Y.” I feel like he hit the nail on the head with this one.
Who/ what influences you in your work? This list is huge – I keep a big folder of inspiration and have a collection of recent sketch books which I doodle in when and where ever. I think a lot and like to take a lot of my influences from both my own experiences and from what I see from day to day life.
[This is Boyce!]
What’s your take on the UK streetwear scene at the moment? I keep an eye on other brands’ work but try not to drown my self in bundles of others’ products, as I feel a lot of other brands stick to what they like or see something else is selling and then go on to try to create something similar. I think this just sits them in second place!
Where do you see you and Suffoca being in 5 years time? In 5 years time I would like to own a bricks and mortar shop, which feels and maybe looks like the huge cave with One Eyed Willie’s ship in (from “The Goonies”).
Where can people expect to catch your work, any UK stockists to watch? I’ve kept hold of the ‘experience’ which you get from ordering a Suffoca product by keeping my apparel limited to my own run store on a first come first served basis.
Top 5 favourite albums?
- Frank Sinatra – Classic Tracks
- Alice in Wonderland – Disney Soundtrack
- Oliver! – Original Soundtrack
- City & Colour – Bring me your love
- Devil Sold His Soul – A Fragile Hope
Shoutouts To everyone who has helped spread the word about the brand – whether that has been from chatting to a mate about it or posting a link on your blog; without the supporters my work wouldn’t see the light of day.
Boyce and Suffoca are in their third year of dressing the nation and pushing the ideas behind the brand. Long may this continue! Thanks to the drop of the new product, Suffoca have a sale running on the old stock, so head over to the shop and sort yourself out. Sweet designs at a sweet price. Do it! If this is the first time you’ve heard of Suffoca head over to the Facebook page or the Twitter account if that’s your thang.
Turns out Boyce also rides. We’re gonna have to get a FatKidOnFire ride going on whilst this weather stays rad!
PS – check the dope video that accompanies the latest Suffoca drop. Sweet cinematography