Interview x No Love City
1. What is the start-up story behind No Love City?
No Love City, as a clothing brand, came about as a natural progression of my previous hobby/side gig of working with music. I was producing, beat making, and mixing. I put together a couple mixtapes called No Love City.
I thought it was a great name and that it could also be a strong message. I was first making t-shirts and skateboards, just kind of dipping my toes i the water, and it evolved from there.
I did like working with music, but that’s another heavily saturated industry, which I probably didn’t have a future in. So as I let the music fade out, I began focusing and turning No Love City into a brand, in which quickly helped me realize my passion.
2. What are three words that best define No Love City?
3. What are you working on lately?
I’m always working on what’s next for the brand; whether it’s design ideas, collaborative releases, new products, or events. There’s a lot on my plate now that I’m really excited about, but the collabs we’re working on are definitely my favorite. One of the awesome people we’re plotting with is ChrisRWK. We love his work, style, and hope to put out a lot of cool stuff with him.
4. What are some recent achievements you guys would like to share?
The best thing for us is to see the people and places that our brand reaches. We have shipped to customers in every state as well as every continent aside from Antarctica. We couldn’t be more proud of this, and we hope to continue reaching every corner of the world.
5. What’s something that’s always running through your minds?
Staying relevant while maintaining our brands image and ideals is probably the most frequent thought. With the technology we have these days, everything moves fast, brands come and go. Our goal is to stay persistent, and continue trying to make cool and timeless stuff.
6. How do you spend your downtime?
I enjoy spending it with my wife and dog, watching TV and movies. I also really enjoy all kinds of art and designer toys.
7. What would you guys spend a million dollars on?
We like to donate to various charities / foundations as much as we can, so the idea of coming into that much money would allow us to help a lot of people. It would also enable us to follow through on any of the wildest ideas we have for the brand, giving us the chance for some fun events, cool collaborations, and more.
8. What three pieces of advice would you all give to others when it comes to life and business?
Passion. It’s one of the keys to success in work and life, in my opinion. If you’re not passionate about something, you won’t ever fully enjoy it or be truly successful.
Persistence. I don’t believe that luck is a factor when it comes to success. Sure, some people have things fall into place, but it’s no coincidence that there was a lot of hard work that came before their success.
Don’t try to get rich quick! If you’re just in it for the money, you probably won’t get it and you definitely won’t be happy. But if you’re passionate about something, you’ll enjoy the work and the money will follow if you’re persistent.
9. What’s one thing you struggled most with when building your own brand?
Remaining optimistic and persistent at the beginning. It can be extremely tough to stand out in such a saturated market. Love and belief in what I was doing got me through the hard times.
10. What have been some of your failures, and what have you learned from them?
As generic or corny as it may sound, I try not to look at anything as a failure. If something doesn’t play out as expected, there’s always an opportunity to learn and grow.
I can say that it’s in your best interest to be cautious about who you align yourself or your business with. Nobody, and I mean nobody, will ever share your level of passion for what you’re doing; and that can have all sorts of negative effects.
But on the flipside, there are plenty of awesome people out there that can make you better. You just have to do your due diligence prior to any major decisions that may include other people and your business.
11. What’s a typical day in your life like?
Being an owner-operator is great for freedom and control. But that comes with the need to be a jack of all trades. From answering emails, shipping orders, quality control, customer service, marketing, accounting, social media, the list goes on. But that’s what you sign up for going in to this.
12. What’s one of the highlighting moment in your career? Why is it so?
I’m grateful anytime we receive an order, see people wearing our stuff, or get asked to do an interview. I love this brand, work hard on it, and it keeps giving me great opportunities and little victories to celebrate.
13. What stops you from throwing in the towel and giving up during those frustrating days of being in this industry?
I’ll keep going back this… PASSION. I love what I’m doing and have a lot more that I want to accomplish, so it’s usually not too hard making through the rough days.
14. Biggest risk ever taken?
I think just starting this whole thing. I’m sure most people, myself included, think it’s going to be easy starting a brand. It’s far from easy if you truly want to do it right, you find that out really quick.
There’s a lot more work involved from just having an idea to actually getting quality, finished products into people’s hands than you might think.
15. Who has influenced you most and been your greatest inspiration?
I’m inspired and influenced by so many different people and things regularly; one of the benefits of how connected we all are.
Though, I must say that the bigger parts of my influence and inspiration come from people I know and/or have worked with. If I may… ChrisRWK, Friks84, Sweyda, Anthony Bencomo, Dave & Holly Nice, Kirby & Whitney Kerr, my Sister, and so many more people. You know who you are.
16. How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
These days, social media is the most popular method of marketing for most businesses, there’s no way around that. The most successful, for me, will always be word of mouth. No boosted post will ever match the power of someone liking your stuff so much that they tell other people about it – It’s also free!
17. How do you plan to grow your brand/business further?
We’re always looking for ways to expand our product offerings, and as I previously stated, collaborations are my favorite.
They force you (and them) to find a middle ground, something that represents both parties, while remaining true to their own brand identity.
There are definitely collabs in the works, as well as new, different products than we’ve offered before. I’m looking forward to everything we’ve got planned for this year, trying new things, and seeing if we can pull everything off to our standards.
18. Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
Deli Fresh Threads. Anthony has created something so unique and cool, he’s a constant source of inspiration and motivation for me. He built a clothing brand influenced by sandwiches!
And it works, so well! The brand is just incredible. There are awesome designs, clever packaging, and a personal touch. That’s how you do business and build a brand. Definitely check them out!
19. How do you achieve balance in your life?
Setting limitations. It’s the most important thing, and I still haven’t mastered it. If you work for someone else at a 9 to 5, that’s it, you go home. Your work and personal life are separate.
If you work for yourself it can be challenging. You’re juggling so many different things at all hours of the day.
You need to set limits or you’ll never relax, and never enjoy life. There’s always an email to answer, an order to pack, or something else. If you let it rule your life and take over your mind, it will.
20. What is the definition of success for you all, and how much of it do you think you guys have achieved?
Success is definitely subjective, and means something different to everyone. For me, it really is about passion, making people happy, and spreading positivity. Money will come and go, it’s nice to have, but it won’t rule my life. If I can keep doing this as long as I want and continue to make things that people like, then I’ll always be successful.
21. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years?
Still working on and continuing to grow No Love City, and we’ll hopefully have launched the second brand that we’ve been slowly planning in the background.
22. What’s the first thing you guys would say to the world if all attention was on you now?
Ideally something positive about overcoming adversity… But it’s likely that I’d get nervous and my wife (and partner) would step in to save the day, or I’d just spit out the link to our store…. (that’s www.nolovecity.com) 😂