Kid is a label pushing the belief that everything looks better in black and white. I’m a believer.
Representing my hometown, Sydney, Kid. delivers a refreshing blend of originality with classic cuts and designs that demand attention.
What made you decide to start your own t-shirt label?
To be completely honest, my main motivation for Kid. came from two of my best friends who I’ve known since I was about 13. I love to draw and paint whenever I get some time to myself and about 2 years ago I finished an artwork of a gun with a rose shooting out of the end of it (the print on the ‘Gunflower’ tee), showed it to these two (because I basically show them everything I draw/paint/create) and as soon as they saw it they just said, “rotate it, print it on a t-shirt, and send a couple our way”. That was actually all the motivation I needed (the fact that one of these two is actually an extremely popular DJ in New Zealand provided a little extra push for me to take a chance and actually test my ability also!). I’ve always felt that ‘Kid.’ could work so amazingly as a label name and concept and was really excited when I found out that nobody had trademarked/registered it so I jumped on that straight away! Also my inability to find t-shirts, singlets, and jumpers that both fit me well (as I’m quite tall), and had a print on it that I actually appreciated played a big part in my decision to commit myself to exposing all of my ideas and creativity to society through humble t-shirts, singlets, and jumpers (for now), and I’m very glad I did!
How long were you in the planning process before you officially launched?
Well I can date that painting I mentioned earlier to about November 2010, and that is basically when I made the decision to commit to starting my own business. From there, I had to get the whole business structure set up properly whilst also doing loads and loads of research on how to actually get things going. Volume 1 was released in May 2011 so it took roughly 7 months to officially launch, and this involved everything from structuring the whole business and financial side to drawing and painting the designs to designing the t-shirts for Volume 1, the sampling process, the photo shoot concept development and execution, all whilst trying to generate hype for Kid. before launching the collection online.
There’s a huge scene in the States and the UK for indie clothing labels. How do you feel we compare with our scene here in Australia?
I think the indie scene in the states and the UK in terms of the labels and what they produce is quite fascinating although I am a fan of the up and coming labels within Australia. I think we are home to plenty of very talented and creative individuals and it’s only a matter of time before a lot of these labels get the recognition that they deserve!
What was the biggest obstacle in your way of launching your label? And how did you overcome it?
It’s very important to believe you can do it and make sure you have a strong support network around you (something which I’m lucky to have and very thankful for). The biggest obstacle is definitely self-doubt, especially when things go wrong during the many processes involved. The biggest way to overcome it was to actually believe it when people tell you they love what you’re doing, and it’s also important to understand that success and recognition does not come overnight. The whole process is so enjoyable though and I personally wouldn’t give it up no matter what obstacle comes this way.
Marketing for t-shirt labels is hugely important, what was your marketing plan when you launched your brand?
Be bold. Be simple. I placed so much focus on the photo shoot for Volume 1. It had to be perfect, it had to be different, and it had to be effective, and I was extremely happy with how it turned out (shout out to my photographer Louis for absolutely nailing the whole thing!). In terms of marketing techniques, generating as much earned (word of mouth) media as possible. It’s so important to get people talking to their friends about the label, and I’ve found this to be the most effective way of generating a buzz and increasing the hype surrounding Kid.
There are so many t-shirt labels out there, with new ones coming out every day…what do you think makes a label stand out and make a name for itself?
I think it’s extremely important to develop a basic principle, which for Kid. is ‘everything looks better in black & white’. I feel that the simpler something is, the more effective it is. Whilst each label may have something great to offer, the ones that stand out to me personally are the ones that have an effective and bold label message, principle and focus, and I certainly feel that ‘everything looks better in black & white’ is a perfect way of summing up Kid. in one sentence. It is exactly the message I want to communicate to everybody and it is something that I want Kid. to be known for.
Is there one label out there you look at for inspiration and admire?
To be honest I don’t think there is, I obviously wear a lot of clothes from a lot of other labels but I’ve never been absolutely fascinated with one particular label.
Now that you’ve launched, is there anything you would have done differently?
Haha most definitely, I made lots of mistakes first time round but I’m glad I did because now I know what to do and what not to do as I begin to plan for Volume 2. I think it’s just apart of the learning process though, and I’m happy I’ve made the mistakes then because I know I won’t make the same ones next time. There isn’t really anything I’d do differently because producing Volume 1 was a great experience and looking back I’m pleased with how the process went and the people I met along the way.
What’s the one piece of advice you’d offer for those out there who are wanting to/have recently launched their own label?
Be serious about it. It takes a lot of dedication, motivation, and hard work to start any business in any industry, and take criticism as graciously and as willingly as you would take praise. It’s probably a little cliché but it is so true when people say that you learn more from those who critique you rather than those who praise you. And also never be disheartened by anything, sometimes things go wrong and they’re completely out of your control, you’ve just got to adapt, solve the problem, and continue to move forward.
Where do you see your brand going in the next 3 years?
Hopefully everywhere! Definitely excited to see what is going to happen next, right now my main focus is to keep pushing Volume 1 and start preparing Volume 2 for a winter release next year, but do not worry, Kid. will continue to pop up with various surprise additions to Volume 1 whilst you all patiently wait for Volume 2 to drop!