We had a chance of meeting these cool cats who own the brand Wasted Royalty out of LA. We sat down and asked them some questions and got some great answers. Look out for this upcoming brand bringing some heat to the streetwear game. You can find more of their gear on their website www.wastedroyalty.com .Check out the interview.
Can you briefly introduce yourselves?
My name is Carlo Fletes, I’m 22 and I’m the cofounder of Wasted Royalty. My partner is Sebastian “Sunny” Hatley, he’s 21 and also the cofounder.
How did you come up with the name, Wasted Royalty?
The name of the brand was originally conceived by my partner Sunny, it was “Cali’s Wasted Royalty” before we pulled the trigger on it we ended up shortening it to just “Wasted Royalty,” it just rolled off the tongue better and kept us from limiting our following to only California.
When did you guys come up with the idea of starting the brand?
Ironically we came up with the idea of starting the brand driving home from work. We (Sunny and I) both work at a restaurant, we were driving home from a 11 hour shift on Mother’s Day and were brainstorming how the hell we could get away from the restaurant industry and be able to spend holidays with our family. Sunny brought up how he had an idea for a brand, I heard the words “Wasted Royalty,” and it just clicked. I told Sunny, with a brand name like that, if he dedicates his time and efforts to me I would make this dream a reality. One year later our clothes are in shops, and have shipped to Canada, New Zealand, England, Germany and even as far as Osaka, Japan. The support was instant and is what keeps us inspired to keep bringing heat for our fans.
What was the inspiration behind the brand?
The inspiration for our brand was our family to be honest. I’ll let you guys in on a little secret, me and Sunny are huge momma’s boys. We couldn’t stand not spending holidays with our family. We wanted a career (not a job) that we could travel the world, determine our work schedules, and provide a high quality of life for our family and friends.
When you started out did you think it would be a serious business?
When starting the brand we decided we wouldn’t even attempt it if we weren’t going to do it seriously. I personally spent 500 on die cut stickers to hand out and gain a hype about our new brand. We posted stickers every where that read “Who Is Wasted Royalty” garnering a large attention and mystery around the brand. We did about 2 months of research before even printing a tee. I acquired our fictitious business name, business account, and whole sale number so we could be as professional as possible from day 1. I didn’t want at any point for anyone to say those Wasted Royalty guys do things “cheap” or “janky” just to crank out product. Our goal in the brand was to provide top quality street wear at affordable pricing, we didn’t want to drain the youths pockets like most of these brands now a days.
Where are you from and how would you define your city’s fashion?
We’re both born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, a smelting pot for fashion. Being just 15 minutes away from Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and Fairfax we get a mix of high fashion, hipsters, and a STRONG influence in street wear. Being the home to skateboard greats like Paul Rodriguez and Torry Pudwell, street wear has been all we wore since elementary school in the 90’s. Our influence is original street wear, heavy graphics and fonts with some images. We don’t do cut and sew or leather pockets and sleeves. Keep that shit for couture brands and high fashion…. There’s no room for that gimmicky shit in true street wear.
How would you define your personal style?
Hmm.. Our style of fashion. Ironically enough I would describe me and sunny as ASAP Rocky and ASAP Yams. I call Sunny pretty flacko, he’s the light skinned black dude that’s sleeved up with tattoos and is always looking fresh (even when we drive 6 hours to the bay). I how ever am on the ASAP Yams look, I’m a heavy set Hispanic dude with a laid back style, it may look like I’m just wearing sweats and a tshirt but believe my outfit cost more than what ever these “swag” kids are rocking.
How difficult is it to remain original when streetwear brands seem to emerge daily nowadays?
To be honest it’s nots difficult at all for us to remain “original.” We founded the brand on taking street wear back to its roots, quality art work, heavy logos and fonts. Now a days everyone is going for the couture look or cut and sew. All that’s cool and all but thats not “street wear” that’s high fashion. You need to able to go out put in work in your tshirt, then be able to wash it with out the logo fading or a cheaply sewed on pocket falling off. Our idea is for you to rock one of our tees a year later and have it look just as fresh as when you took it out the bag, and more importantly for the design to not loose relevance. Too many brands jump on ideas or designs cause its what’s in now, our goal is to be timeless… No fads here.
What should your followers expect to see in 2013 and beyond?
For 2013 our followers should expect the great quality threads they’ve come to know and love but just know we stepped our game dramatically. Even though we’re an independent brand we took the steps necessary to compete with major brands, we recently had hoodie sweatshirts custom made to our liking and our first pair of socks set to debit this winter!
What makes you different from other brands out there nowadays?
What makes us different is our reasoning behind the brand, we didn’t start it for riches and fame. We did it to fill the void, we know money will come there’s no rush, but what needs to be addressed right away is the current state of street wear. No more ridiculous pricing. No more shitty quality. And most importantly, no gimmicks or fads!
If you could dress one celebrity in Wasted Royalty, who would it be and why?
Hands down, School Boy Q… He embodies the brand exactly. He’s rough, he’s an LA native, he has an original vibe and sense of style, he’s heavily influenced by the 90’s like us, nd lastly he raps how he wants to… Not whats “cool” or “in”. That right there is Wasted Royalty in the flesh.
Where and how can new followers follow your brand ? instagram? twitter? facebook?
New followers can find us on all major social media outlets. Instagram @wastedroyalty twitter @wastedroyaltyla or like us on Facebook. You can also go to our website www.wastedroyalty.com
What was your intent behind the creation of? How did the business come about
The business started on two simple ideas, provide for our family’s and fill the void in street wear right now, by that we mean in overall product. There’s a lot of great brands but most are either getting watered down, charging way too much for their clothes, or sacrifice quality for profit. We wanted to give back to the community by providing the best in quality art work and production for the lowest price we could provide.
What other brands / companies inspire you to hustle like you do?
Brands that inspire us are Primitive, hands down the best designs in street wear right now; Crooks and Castles, the giants who are doing things right; and Born x Raised another brand on the rise who embodies everything we want to.
Lastly, could you talk about any long-term goals you have in mind?
Our long time goals as corny as this sounds is longevity. Too many brands come and go now days, a major reason why we stay away from gimmicks. The huge numbers don’t have to be there every year but if for the next ten years I can put out steady collections, to true fans, and make enough to support my family, I’ll be good. I can’t ask for more than the support of our followers and steady run at providing for them.
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