Saturday, 27 July 2013

FRESH LACES X HARVEY NICHOLS



Knightsbridge is not a place I frequent usually, with it's high end (and out of my budget) fashion stores and suited and booted population, but last Saturday was an exception. Breaking tradition I made a visit to Harvey Nichols flagship store and I definitely felt a little out of my depth! But the closer I got to the ground floor, the lounder the music, and the more at home I felt! The menswear department was converted into an underground market place hosting the rarest of trainers, customisation, restoration and more!

This was my very first press event and I felt like a little fishy in a big pond! There was a lot going on and it was a little overwhelming at first but all I could think was "As if this is actually happening...in Harvey Nichols" - a place I visit around christmas time to treat myself to some goodies! This Fresh Laces X Harvey Nichols event surpassed... in fact, it blew my expectations out of the water! A massive congratulations is in order for the Fresh Laces team! 


Someone on the day spoke about how Fresh Laces are keeping it clean, fresh and exclusive in every sense of the word. With a selection of hand picked brands, sellers and labels, it was an event no one should have missed.  

Having the likes of Jadakiss, Professor Green, Henry Holland, Kano and more passing through, it was a sneakerheads heaven!

Kano checking out Mr Sneaker's table of kicks!

w/ Charlie Sloth of Radio 1 Xtra

Whilst working my way through the room, we got to enjoy beats by 10 Faces and The Dickson Brothers of Kiss FM. But it didn't end there, throughout the day we were treated to performances by Mc Zani, Alyusha and The Bass. Make sure you check out my video below to experience what we did!

L-R The Bass, Alyusha and The Bass

Specialist sellers included 'I want your Sole' with a huge collection of trainer key rings...




...insane trainer customisation by From Virginia...


King of This Couture brand stocking some great pieces....



...gorgeous jewellery by Elisha Francis London, who took part in my Talk Brands collective...




...custom headwear by Custom Eyes Caps (@icustomeyes)..


..Trainer restoration by Save Our Soles...


And of course, it could go without saying, a great selection of the rarest trainers from lots of sellers all under one roof. Here is just a few of them...

Tapis Rouge

Dimension London


The King of Trainers, @fabsnetwork from @TrainerHolic

I caught up with Nathan, the Founder of Fresh Laces, after the event;

For the people who don't know, where did Fresh Laces all begin and how did the team come together?
Fresh Laces was an idea i've had for a few years now, basically im a big sneakerhead and have always wanted a store of my own called Fresh Laces. I started the pop up events as a way of getting the name out in the sneaker world. Its all happened so quick, i was offered a bar (Apres Bar) back in March to hold our first event and 4 weeks later Fresh Laces was born! 

What has been the highlight for you so far?
The highlight so far has to be our last event at Harvey Nichols. The fact such a big world famous store like HN took an interest in our culture and hosted such a dope event is a real blessing and definitely a good thing not only for Fresh Laces but the whole sneaker & lifestyle culture in the UK. We had Jadakiss, Kano, Pro Green, Charlie Sloth plus loads more come through and check us out, thats pretty amazing for a company thats only been going since April.

How would you describe your own personal style?
My own personally style? Haha thats tuff one, im old skool so dont jump onto too many new clothing styles. I like to keep things pretty simple but with always sick kicks!

What are your favourite brands/websites/stores?
Im really on Uk brands at the minute, Trapstar, BenJart & King Of This couture are all dope. Store-wise I like Natterjacks in Kingston, they always hook me up with the latest dope stuff out. Other stores would be sneaker ones really, Foot Patrol, Nike Town, Dimension & Mr Sneaker, i love them ALL!

Favourite brand of footwear?
Im a big collector so like a bit of everything. Nike will always be number 1 but a nice variety never hurt anyone. I tend to buy a nice amount of the same shoe for a while then on to something else. Im working on building a nice Asics Gel Lyte iii collection at the moment

Whats your take on the current "sneakerhead" culture?
The current 'sneakerhead' culture in the UK is a great thing. We've always been into kicks but the levels have really gone up over the last few years and its turning into a real 'community'. That can only be a good thing for us and hopefully we can keep building and get to the levels they have in the States were events are massive. They incorporate music, fashion & sneakers into one big show and thats definitely something Fresh Laces wants to do. I think with all the different events, queues for the releases and resale prices on certain kicks in the Uk at the moment, it really shows the demand is there 

What can we expect to see from you in the future?
Expect big things from Fresh Laces in the future, we'll just continue to put on dope events, and always bring new elements to each pop up. So more kicks, more clothing lines, artists, designers, whatever the creative brand is we want to be their platform to show the world!

Anything else you'd like to add?
Just like to add a big thank you to all our supporters who come out and show love each time. And a massive thank you to Talk Casuals, you guys have been supporting us from the start with all these dope blogs. Big thank you for that!

Nathans' Saucony X Play Cloths at the Fresh Laces event.

Overall it was unbelievable, couldn't congratulate Fresh Laces enough! I can't wait to see what's next, but no doubt it'll be big!


Click read more to see the other pictures we took throughout the day, can also take a look at my instagram @shangry for the videos I took too! If you peep your feet, drop me a message and I'll get you tagged! Please also #TalkCasuals or @ me @shangry if you use any pictures! Thanks!

Friday, 26 July 2013

#TALKCASUALS

Thank you to everyone who has been #TalkCasuals on Instagram and Twitter! 

I'll always repost your picture onto the Talk Casuals Facebook Page, but here is an appreciation post of my favourites so far!





Wednesday, 24 July 2013

CREPE CITY #8

Soon to return is one of the largest and well known sneaker events to ever hit our capital city. 

Crepe City #8 is yet again going to be full to the brim with sneakers and streetwear, all under one roof! This is a sneaker festival not to be missed! With the length of queues at the last event still fresh in our minds, there is no doubt the Advance VIP tickets will go quickly! 

Don't miss out! VIP tickets go on sale Monday at crepecity8.eventbrite.co.uk! 

We'll see you there! 


Keep #TalkCasuals on Instagram/Twitter - show me whats on your feet!

6 ACRE - MANCHESTER


The countdown has started for the very first 6 Acre Kicks trainer and apparel event in Manchester. You have 3 days to sort your travel, withdraw your savings and get yourself up North! 

Get over to their Twitter @6acrekicks, Facebook and Instagram @sixacre_kicks to keep up to date!

Saturday, 20 July 2013

JUST RELEASED: E-SOLE & S-SOLE TEE'S - Q&A WITH LEI-MAI LE MAOW

Not so long ago received my Sole-1 "You're nothing if you ain't got sole" tee from Sole Unit, and I was over the moon with it. If you missed out on the first drop, then you're in luck...



Yesterday saw the second drop, featuring two tees: "E-Sole" and "S-Sole". 


Both tees are inspired by two of the most well known kicks in the history of sneakers. 
The Nike X Atmos Air Max 1 - Elephant, and the Nike X Atmos Air Max 1 - Safari. 
Throwing a nice twist on the hand drawn and designed typography by Lei-Mai LeMaow, seen on the first tee's, these ones are not to be missed. Especially if you have the kicks to match, or if like me, you need a supplement as you've been lusting for your feet to grow so there is a chance you could own a pair yourself. Either way, you need one...or both! 

But, who is behind the tees? I did a mini-interview with my girl Lei-Mai so you can get to know her a little better...


Name
Lei-Mai

Age
almost dirty 30... D:

Where are you based?
from Liverpool but living in the sunny Costa Del Salford!

When did you get into typography and why?
I've always been in to drawing and letters and experimenting with things like that, I used to sit when i was young and just draw alphabets all day an I used to paint a lot but I guess I started concentrating on type rather than illustration about 3 months ago after a friend inspired me!

You have quite a big following on the internet, do you ever find yourself feeling like a celebrity?
Not at all! Far from it in fact. For a start celebrities usually have loads of money, I have none of that haha. But nah it makes me cringe when people think they're famous coz a few thousand people know their name.

Walk us through a day in the life of Lei-Mai ?
Lots of workin' and then lots of lurkin'!

Is there anyone in particular who you admire or who inspires you?
Hmmm yeah I admire loads of different people for loads of different reasons, I wouldn't even know where to begin, none of them are even particularly famous, some not at all. I just admire people who are happy and have been clever in their life, mainly people who have come from nothing and made something for themselves, not even necessarily well off people, just happy people ^__^ 

What are you wearing on your feet right now?
AM1 Essential - unofficial pigeon, my favourite daily right now 

What are your favourite brands/websites/stores?
This is such a hard question, it changes all the time depending what day it is or what I want so I'm gonna cheat and say Nike, that's obvious isn't it but I just think they're so clever, also apple (what, that's a brand) again the design is simple, keeping people on their toes etc and Rockwell, it's like one of the only brands right now that I just want almost everything from plus I love parra's illustrations they're silly! As for favourite stores, I'd have to say WellGosh, I like their personal touches on social networking, it's nice and chilled. end is a great one too and hmmm one more www.soleunit.eu of course haha!

What kind of music are you into?
Hip Hop is my main love, old ish though, I can't really be bothered with all the new crap, some is ok I guess and Kanye West needs to sort himself out haha other than that I like a bit of house, hard house, techy house etc, garage, grime, reggae, dub, r&b...... loads of stuff haha 

What song do you never get tired of?
Danger Doom - Crosshairs

What are your hobbies?
Just general ish like drawing, I've rode fixed for yeeaarsss so I've been lost recently with a flatty, I think other than that, most of my hobbies have become work!

Tell us something we don't know about you.
there's not much people don't know about me, most of that has been answered to crazy tumblr anons!

What was your most embarrassing moment?
Something embarrassing happens to me every day I'm not even joking, I'm so dosey!

If I gave you an Elephant, where would you hide it? 
On the mudguard of my shoe and some of the upper! Seriously though!! When am I ever gonna get my hands on a pair of atmos elephants?

Any personal ambitions yet unattained?
Yes! I want to make enough money to stop worrying about it because that's all I've done my whole life and it's extremely boring, plus I want to buy my mum a lighthouse and go travelling with somebody special.

Thanks for having me ^__^

Friday, 19 July 2013

TALK BRANDS #8: ELISHA FRANCIS LONDON

We're nearing the end of our Talk Brands collective, but it's not over yet! This week we're getting up close and personal with Elisha Francis of Elisha Francis London. I first met Elisha at the very first Fresh Laces event back in April, and I've been following her brand ever since. I'm a big fan of her jewellery and I'm planning on purchasing a piece from a special collection, but I'll let her tell you a little more about that...


Where did Elisha Francis London all begin and what made you want to run your own brand? 
I began making jewellery as a hobby in August 2003 after a trip to John Lewis department store led to the creation of my first pair of earrings.
I came across a business start up workshop run by GLE one London at my local library and they helped me turn my passion for jewellery into a business in December 2009.


How would you describe Elisha Francis London?
My designs are vintage inspired with a London edge, I enjoy making jewellery that makes the wearer feel like a Superstar.
 
What is your favourite piece from your collection? 
At the moment my favourite piece is the new 'ISIS' design from the Bomani Collection.


If you could sum up your brand in 3 words, what would they be? 
Glamourous, Bold & Chic

What for you has been the highlight of running Elisha Francis to date? 
Sponsoring the MOBOs goody bags in 2012, and finishing my Jewellery design last month.

What do you do outside Elisha Francis London? 
Recently my husband has started his own business venture called 'Fresh Laces' and I have become involved in the events management side of the business which has been great.

What is your favourite clothing brand, other than your own? 
I don't really have a favourite clothing brand, but I am a huge fan of vinatge clothes. I love visiting the shops in Brick Lane and looking for little treasures.

Favourite brand of footwear? 
I would have to say, Converse, I wear them with absolutely everything and have loads of different colours.

What can we expect to see from Elisha Francis in the future? 
Now that my degree is complete I will be working on a new collection and planning an official launch event. 

What, in your opinion, is the best thing about running your own brand? 
It's great being your own boss and being able to see happy customers in my designs.


What advice would you give to someone who may want to start their own brand?
My advice would be, believe in yourself, be prepared to work very hard and remember there is no such thing as perfect, a successful brand should constantly be evolving  

Anything else you'd like to add
I will be designing a special collection of jewellery for 'Fresh Laces' next event which will take place in Harvey Nichols Knightsbridge on the 20th July.




You can purchase some gorgeous pieces by Elisha Francis via her website and at the next Fresh Laces event. Make sure you follow @elishafrancis on Twitter and Instagram!

Sunday, 14 July 2013

TALK CASUALS COMPETITION TIME!

So it is FINALLY here! You have all been so patient but I promised you it would be worth the wait!


We have goodies from SMALL FEET BIG KICKS, YOUNG RECKLESS HEARTS, PATTA, HUF and two tapes and sunnies from Art Daley, CROOK STREET! 

You know the deal, and I won't waste any more time!  Like our Facebook Page, Repost the picture on Instagram/Twitter, #TalkCasuals or share from the Talk Casuals Facebook Page! 

Winners picked 1/08/13! Good luck!

Saturday, 13 July 2013

TALK BRANDS #7: THFKDLF

We've reached week 7 and so far have been up close and personal with lots of great brands. This week we're not slowing up, despite drawing closer to the end of this collective. Hopefully this has been benifical for all you designers out there needing that little bit of inspiration. If not, maybe this week will be that turning point...we're speaking to Daniel Tomley, 25, & Jakub Taylor, 22, from The Fucked Life. THFKDLF make hand made unisex garmets in their studio based in Oswestry, Shropshire.

Where did THFKDLF all begin and what made you want to run your own brand?
I (Dan) was pretty bored of seeing all these brands coming out with one colour screen prints on white or black tees. I wanted to do something different myself rather then just get annoyed at all these clone companies.


How would you describe THFKDLF?
It's hard to describe your own brand but I think we have a unique and fairly original style, I think we could release things without any logo on people would know we made it.

What is your favourite piece from your collection?
We're really into the two newest tees we've shown off, the forest tee and the water/sky one from the natural collection we're going to be releasing soon.





If you could sum up your brand in 3 words, what would they be?
I couldn't think of anything so i tweeted asking for help, so here are a few - don't need vowels, flowers and shit, fancy as fuck.

What for you has been the highlight of running THFKDLF to date?
Being able to turn it from a hobby into our full time job, it amazes us that we're lucky enough to be able to devote all of our time into something we love and not have to worry about working other jobs anymore. It doesn't feel like work at all, and thats probably the biggest achievement ever.

What do you do outside THFKDLF?
Im not sure we've had time to do anything other then work for the last few months but we go out, get drunk, play xbox, listen to music just regular stuff.

What is your favourite clothing brand, other than your own?
I Love Ugly are sick, the ragged priest do some really cool stuff.


Favourite brand of footwear?
Vans, right boring answer for you there.

Who would you most like to do a collaboration with and why?
It would be really cool to collaborate with a really established brand like Only or Supreme just to see what would be like, maybe supreme would let us acid wash a bunch of tees!

What can we expect to see from THFKDLF in the future?
Who even knows, we don't plan things out months in advance, we'll be sat in our studio working on something, have an idea, make it happen and see how it looks. We're trying to plan ahead for next winter and see if we can actually do that but the way we work seems to be going pretty well.


What, in your opinion, is the best thing about running your own brand?
Just the freedom to do whatever we want, because we do all our own printing and sewing, we don't have to wait around for printers to get back to us, if we have an idea, in twenty minutes it can be a real thing and thats pretty amazing.

What advice would you give to someone who may want to start their own brand?
I think people need to just have some original ideas, putting a logo on a t-shirt isnt going to work for everyone, people need to think outside of that and then maybe they will be able to catch peoples attention and stand out.


You can pick up stuff from THFKDLF at their bigcartel here, and don't forget to follow them on Twitter: @THFKDLF. Check out their  SS13Lookbook video here, and for more pictures click here!  

Go and like the Talk Casuals Facebook page! If you own your own brand and want to get involved drop me a message!