#MODERNCREATIVE Over drinks one night Colin Tunstall, Morgan Collet and Josh Rosen, all surfers living in NYC got to talking about the commercial way that surfing was being portrayed in the city. From a distaste of the big surf brands putting mega stores on very touristy streets (think Times Square) to fashion brands screening logo’s onto surfboards and propping them up in their windows. Their view at the time was that no one was doing surf culture any justice in New York. The best way to combat this? Start a brand and do it them selves. Thus – Saturdays NYC was created.
Both a Haydenshapes stockist and brand that we are rather fond of, Saturdays NYC rolls in its own lane. Although it’s inspired many to try and follow suit – no one does it with the same edge. Coffee, Surfboards, Art and threads - there is a lot to like.
Here are a few words from the creators themselves about running the global business, ignoring bad advice and East Coast Vs West Coast.
Describe the brand in a sentence.
Saturdays NYC is a mens fashion lifestyle brand.
Were you all friends for a long time before you started the business together?
For a few years. We had all been friends for 3 or 4 years by the time we opened up.
Saturdays is not really your typical Surf brand/retailer. Is that how you always intended it to be?
We built the brand to represent us. We didn’t try and be like anyone else and no one had really succeeded at what we were trying to do in the past so we didn't really have anyone else to follow. We use the word organic a lot to describe our growth. It truly was. We did what felt right and true to us and continue that to this day.
What do you find is most challenging and most rewarding about your job?
Doing what you love and believe in super challenging and super rewarding. It’s 100% our company and it’s success depends 100% on the three of us making it happen everyday.
What is the worst piece of business advice that somebody has ever thrown your way?
There are so many different terrible things that have been pitched our way. People just make assumptions constantly as to what we should sell or how we should expand our business.
We hear you are pretty selective with the brands that you carry in your stores... How do normally you go about bringing on something new?
When we opened in 2009, we sold other brands. Since the summer of 2011 we have sold 100% Saturdays apparel. The brands we carry other then our own are few and super selective. We are very focused on the future of the Saturdays brand. New Categories and creating the highest quality product is the most important part of what we are doing now.
Where do you look for creative ideas and inspiration?
Living in NYC. There is a lot going on and you encounter inspiration pretty constantly.
How do you think that the surf culture between the East and the West Coast differentiates most?
In the end we all just want to surf. I think people in NYC or SF, LA might be looking for more. Art, culture, city lifestyle mixed with their surfing. You feel the more traditional surf vibe in California but I think it’s growing and spreading out everywhere.
Montauk or Rockaways?
The Rockaway's are closer, easier for a morning mission before work. Montauk is further away and super removed from the City. I like a bit of both but personally I prefer to get further away from the city when there are waves.
Who would be one of the most interesting people that has dropped by a Saturdays store or worn something from the collection?
We have had so many amazing people wear the clothing and come by the stores. The list is way to long to single out people. I think we all get a kick out of seeing Jay Z or Justin Timberlake wearing it just because if you had said that to us early on we would have laughed. I love to see it on friends the most.
What are 3 things that you love and 3 things that you could live without most in New York?
Friends, Booze, my bike
Horns, traffic, parking tickets
How do you guys typically spend a Saturday?
Shake off the hangover. Hopefully jump in the ocean. Exercise as much as possible. Eat a ton of great food. Get drunk again.
We just opened our 6th store in Osaka in March this year and hope to open more vertical retail each year. Other then that we plan to keep growing the categories we offer and striving to make great stuff for Saturdays fans around the world.
Instagram / Twitter @saturdaysnyc
Interview by Danielle Cox.