Origin London x FatKidOnFire - Interview #28

Origin London x FatKidOnFire

Interview #28

Every so often, an opportunity presents itself here at FatKidOnFire HQ that is too just good to miss. This feature is an example of such an opportunity. This brand dropped their first design on their webstore less than 12 hours ago so when I say they’re super fresh you know I mean it! I have a really good feeling about these guys…

Find out more after the jump

As FatKidOnFire continues to grow, I’m finding it increasingly difficult to pinpoint where I meet or discover new brands (old age innit) but I have a feeling I first found Origin London on Twitter. After a long correspondence with main man Gabriel (that 16 year old ticket tout in the tag above) via email, I knew I had to get the drop on Origin LDN and get a FatKidOnFire feature going to coincide with the release of their first, very exclusive (only 20 printed) line of tees. Read on to find out more…

Who or what Is Origin London? Origin London is a underground streetwear label looking to make a difference in the streetwear scene by exploiting the creativity on the streets of London by using hip-hop as well as our other loves, such as street-art, as a way in which we can put out some fresh designs & sick tees.

Your tee design is strong and striking, will your later designs continue the strong theme(s) or will your brand image be flexible? I think we may use our brand image in some way or another on a later tee – but we’re doing exclusive, limited-edition runs of this design to reflect our ethos of exclusivity and individuality over profits or expansion. We’ll only be releasing 20 of these tees; so watch out for them as they’ll go quick! But apart from this specific design, I think we’ll continue to make our designs strong and striking as we want our tees to be a bit more than a simple garment, maybe something that connects emotionally to the wearer or something like that.

I think I just want people to think of Origin London as more than just a tee brand but something that represents them and their values in a way. We could even be the support of the underground movement, or the fight against big companies knocking all these small businesses out of every penny they could earn – when you wear Origin London; that’s what you’re representing.

As you guys are super fresh, what will make your brand stand out and distinguish itself from the rest of the street-wear pack? When we first started up Origin (which was only a couple of months back) we did our research and looked for almost every streetwear label that were vying to make it in the streetwear game. We realised that so few brands actually have a purpose or represent something in their brand or have a way in which they can have some kind of relationship with the buyer, and that’s what makes us different (apart from our dope designs haha!). With our blog, we can share our ideas and our thoughts with our fans – so they have an idea about where the shirts come from, what is the inspiration and which design they prefer.

That makes them closer to the shirt – which I feel is vital when having a shirt. Personally, I want it to be more than just a garment; I want it to reflect who I am and what I’m like. With our aims: trying to support and improve the Underground streetwear scene as well as trying to help and support the UK hip-hop scene – or to try and bring a theme of London and hip-hop together – we are creating passion and bringing something to our tees which actually means something and represents something. I feel this makes our tees stronger and better than if our tees meant jack-shit.

Who or what Influences your work? I think we’ve been influenced by a lot but we’ve also influenced ourselves. Hero, (our designer) who’s a f*cking genius when it comes to street art (he’s had his work shown alongside Banksy’s), has just been coming out with some sick designs. But I think what influenced his designs was our love for hip-hop, and maybe the hip-hop scene over in Brooklyn and Tribeca right now (like at DD172) but what most definitely influenced us was London as a whole, the whole feel of East London and what’s going on over there has really influenced our work.

I also think we gained a lot from the fashion of the ’80s and ’90s and the way they used tees, especially in the ’90s, based on the use of colours and just generally how a tee looked back then. Saying that, I don’t think there’s one thing or person that I could say has influenced us.

What’s your take on the UK Streetwear scene at the moment? Right now I really think it’s flourishing and there are so many great brands out there that are doing their thing and are really getting their stuff out there due to the internet, which is great. However, I also think this means the scene is filled with brands that don’t have enough about them, don’t have a purpose or anything, and are simply selling clothes, which to me is a bit boring.

So that is something I feel the UK Streetwear scene is missing at the moment. But overall, I think the UK Streetwear scene is really improving and coming to the forefront of niche fashion styles. <

Where do you see Origin London in 5 years time? In 5 years time, I can see Origin London having the same purpose and the same values and most importantly, never selling out and keeping it real. But I also think in 5 years time (hopefully) we’ll be majorly contributing to the UK Streetwear scene and in all honesty, I could see Origin leading the underground movement, so cop one of our first 20 t-shirts!

Also by that time, I hope we would have improved the hip-hop scene in the UK which is already really improving, especially this year. I think Origin could help to make it even better in 5 years time. Hopefully we’ll also be hosting some nights helping to promote talented UK artists by that time as well but we’ll wait and see.

Where can people expect to catch your work, any UK stockists to watch? We’ll be selling off our work from our site and hopefully we may get some onto Wholesome London’s site. They’re really nice guys over there and it’s a really cool store so hopefully that’ll work out. For now, keep an eye out on our site!

Top five favourite albums? Ahhh of all time? That’s difficult. Well, we gotta have Nas’ Illmatic in there, sorry to be boring but it was unbelievable, how innovative it was at the time, but still how genuine and real it was. Paid In Full by Eric B & Rakim, just thanks to Rakim’s lyrical talent – he is a f*cking monster! Umm Blackstar was a sick album but Black on both sides was better I think, I generally just love Mos Def and Talib (Kweli) though, they’re carrying real hip-hop in the mainstream while everyone else is going different ways and following each other, which is proper messed-up. I think we’ve got to have Kanye or Common in there so College Dropout or Be; both great albums so have got to be in there. Although UK hip-hop artists aren’t in the 5 best albums of all time; Wretch 32 is really impressing me, so hopefully when he puts an album out there I’ll be able to fit him in there somewhere.

Shoutouts Flyprints, It’s The Leak and Hero! Look out for our shirts on our site!

I still find it amazing that new brands are consistently finding ways to create their own niche in this (sometimes overcrowded) streetwear industry. Origin London are an example of such a brand.

Gabriel, a 16 year old ticket tout, and Hero, a street artist, have managed to come up with a limited edition solid first design (printed on the great American Apparel basic tee so you know it’s a great cut and quality). I have a feeling Origin London are here to stay and may make big waves in the streetwear game! Head over to their site to read up on their great blog, but make sure you hit up their webstore to cop one of their exclusive first tees (there are only 19 15 available from the webstore so don’t sleep – Flyprints are giving one away)!

If you want an idea of what the tee looks like on, peep Gabriel rocking it below. Seriously big look!