March’s been a pretty mad month here on FatKidOnFire. The Facebook page hit 1,300 fans a few weeks back, SoundCloud hit 1,500 followers and MakeItGood‘s Lara and I celebrated reaching 100 features in the MIG x FKOF series last week. Oh, and we’re one feature away from reaching #100 in the brand interview series as well. And to top it off, FatKidOnFire was 2 years old on Friday. Total madness!
It also seems that the fashion side of things has started to take off again (yet another positive) after a fair long while of being skewed towards the bass side of things. And there’s a resurgence of properly amazing streetwear brands going on…
Before leaving university (and prior to starting my first job after graduating), I was fortunate enough to intern with Second Son – one of the finest streetwear brands to come out of the UK. Things have been a bit quiet from Rufus and Will recently, but I’ve got it on good authority things are going on behind the scenes and we’ll see a new drop from Second Son sometime soon!
Anyway, coming back from that slight tangent, one of the main reasons I love Second Son is their ability to combine British designs/ humour/ fabrics with streetwear silhouettes. It gives streetwear that distinct British flavour (much like what House of Billiam do with their (more premium) products) which is sometimes lacking from brands from the UK.
New Bristol brand Parlez Clothing do exactly the same with what they’re setting out to do. They caught my eye with some lovely tees, sweats and a pretty damn awesome hoodie – not to mention the tweed (iL) Soigneur bag (I’m a sucker for anything tweed), after founder Cav fired me an email.
Cav and I got talking and we ended up doing the full interview – which you can read below. And if you like what you see, why not enter the competition to win a tee of your choice at the bottom of the page?
Who and what is Parlez Clothing? Parlez Clothing is a new brand out of Bristol. We started up in early 2012 and we’ve been moving quickly since.
There don’t seem to be many premium/ British-inspired ‘streetwear’ brands around these days (with one or two exceptions) – what inspired you to start one? We liked the idea of designing a brand that had a strong British theme running through it; we wanted to design something that isn’t the same as the other brands that are putting out. We wanted to offer something a bit closer to home, rather than going with the typical American streetwear look.
You seem to have a properly British vibe throughout your designs/ products, why is that? We loved the colours that are associated with ‘British design’ over the years (Racing greens, Royal reds and Navy blue for example) and the patterns that follow. For example, Harris tweed is a material that is recognised all over the world and yet it’s rarely seen in collections (streetwear or otherwise) these days.
What plans have you got to extend the product line; or will Parlez stick with solid tees/ sweats/ hoodies and accessories for the foreseeable future? We are looking to push the line as far as we possibly can. Next season we’re looking to add to the collection with some shirts, jackets and hats but we want to keep tees, sweats and the graphic element of the brand just as vibrant as this season.
Bristol’s a hotbed for amazing British brands these days, what’s the city got that others don’t? Bristol’s scene is great to be in! It’s a friendly city and everyone in the scene gets on and knows each other well – so it’s a good environment to start a brand in. The city also has a lot of inspiration in it; 30 minute bike ride from the centre and you’re in the country/ 5 minutes walk from the door and you’re in the heart of the city. It’s a great place to grow up and live in.
What’s your take on the independent clothing scene in the UK at the moment? The independent scene is a great one to watch at the moment; we have loads of new brands popping up. It’s great seeing what people have to offer (as well as seeing people just having a go). It’s sad to see brands such as A.in.T and Second Son being quiet at the moment – as these guys were what defined UK streetwear from the rest of the pack, but a lot of people have stepped their game up such as bake, hbad and especially Enclave (which is great to see).
Where do you see Parlez being in 5 years time? In 5 years time I’d like to see us working with some of the top names in streetwear. I hope that it becomes a household name within the scene.
Where can people expect to catch your product, what (if any) stores is the brand stocked in? You can catch the stock online and you’ll also find it in Donuts (in Bristol) and in Dirty Girl (Leeds) very soon. Also we’ll be online on My Yard‘s store. We also looking to hit up a few festivals this year so keep an eye out and come have a chat.
Can you If you could say something to your fans, what would it be? Likewise to your haters? I’d like to thank everyone who’s supported us so far and we really appreciate the support! And to the haters, well if you don’t like it you don’t like and that’s cool.
Top 5 favourite albums?
- Taskforce – Voice of the Great Outdoors
- Roots Manuva – Dub Come Save Me
- State Radio – Year of the Crow
- Bedouin Soundclash – Sounding a Mosaic
- Dr Dre – The Chronic
Any shoutouts? I’d like to give a shoutout to all the Bristol heads who have helped us along the one; My Yard, Harry Blades, Donuts, Dutty, Matty Bosa. Shoutout to Suffocake and FatKidOnFire [thanks man]! Finally, out to the heads that have supported and of course the fam.
Any brand that attempts to combine British inspiration and streetwear is going to get kudos from me – and even more if they manage to pull it off. I reckon Parlez have managed that, and managed it with style. I’m more than tempted to pick up a bit of everything from their solid debut collection (and might just do so if the bank account lets me)!
If you like what Parlez are doing as much as me, and fancy winning a Parlez tee (of your choice), simply tell me what city the brand is from.
You’ve got a week from today to enter. Good luck!
If you have any thoughts on what Cav from Parlez Clothing has had to say, or want to recommend a new brand you’ve discovered or just want a chat about something you’ve seen on FatKidOnFire, drop a comment below or get in touch via email, Twitter, Facebook or the FKOF TakesQuestions page.