I’m a fan of street wear, hot clothes which look cutting edge and have innovative design and King Apparel is have been running tings with there garms for around 8 years. Maybe its being from London, the same city as the brand, sharing the same views and opinions as them. And if it is that then it comes across, something which must be hard to do, to capture a feeling and a vibe, and put it into clothing. I caught up with Tim who helped set up and now also helps to run, with his mate Paul, King Apparel.
The only reason that I’m aware of King Apparel is through the music scene, whether it be I’ve seen the logo sponsoring an event, or seeing someone at a rave rocking the hard garms you so consistently bring out, so that being said how important is music to the brand, and to you as a individual?
Music is central to the brand and everything we do. We emerged at the same time as the grime scene in the same area of East London and King really grew together with the emergence of that scene. At the same time my background in skate and snowboard so there was also an underlying punk sort of element to what I liked. The grime scene and punk scene are very similar in many ways and I think that’s why we like them so much. Obviously there are strong connections from Grime to Dubstep and we were big into that before it became more main stream. That’s how we were able to work with the likes of Plastician, Joker, Wretch32, Plan B etc you know 6-7 years ago before they all became household names. They are still very loyal to King as well which is wicked for everyone involved.
There’s more street wear brands out there than ever before, competition has got to be hard as ever, what is it that makes King stand out from the rest in your opinions?
Well there are a lot of brand names, but not really as many brands as you think. The majority of new labels coming through are t-shirt brands and the reality is, there is a huge gulf between a t-shirt brand and a comprehensive clothing brand. So I think what you’ll see over the next year is many of these won’t carry through and one or two that really go for it and have something different will develop into full fledged brands. It’s not just about your brand, what you make or how well it is designed, but business acumen, organization, commitment, sacrifice, and hard work all comes into it. Just one of these lacking and it won’t happen. I guess what separates us from many is that we have spent eight years showing all the characteristics that I just mentioned and built a solid foundation on this. We live and breath the culture we represent so would hope that people into the same stuff as us will feel amped on wearing what we make.
What was it that made you think you could start a successful clothing brand, when did push come to shove?
There wasn’t just one single thing, we had an idea and went with it. We took it day by day and as more challenges and hurdles presented themselves that we needed to get over to achieve our goals we made sure that we overcame them. After a while you reflect on what you have done and suddenly you are closer to actually having a brand and something tangible that people really recognise. We just followed what we wanted to do and had an unbridled commitment and motivation to achieve that. We still do to be honest.
Being around for a relatively short period, you managed to open a shop in the prime location of Covent Garden, where you had Skandals (Rewd Adams) Hunger Pains launch about 18 months ago, and I think Guru (R.I.P.) and Solar passed thru there too, any future plans for more of this sort of thing?
The shop was actually an 8 month pop-up store concept which finished last year. The idea was to be able to showcase the brand and what we do to a wider audience on a daily face to face basis. A large part of this included the instores and also the weekly DJ sets. As you say we had Skandal and Guru did insane sets as well as Virus Syndicate, DJ IQ, The Last Skeptic, Plastician, Alex Nut, P Money, Pyrelli and many more performing at the store. It really was sick having that medium to show what we do and like. We would love to do something like that again and give artists a permanent platform in Central London to perform on a regular basis, but we got in a lot of trouble with local residents for the road blocks we caused ha ha, plus the costs on stores round there now have gone through the roof, so its not as practical as it may seem. We may get a party together later this summer though – hold tight for that. If people like what we do then they should check out the site as we have an online store plus a host of stuff to download, stream etc.