It’s always refreshing to come across people that are conscious of what is going on around them. More importantly, it’s great to see that the same consciousness translates to everyday life and business. The owners of the Los Angeles clothing brand “Mike’s Deli” are one of those tandems that are activating that initiative.
I luckily came across their brand through Instagram. After looking through their page and website I had to know who was behind it and how they came up with the concept. Mike’s Deli includes some dope ass concepts around quality T-shirts, Pants, Jackets, Accessories, and more. Anchored by a category called “Slightly Used” that they elaborate on in the interview.
Not only were they down to chat with us they blessed us with an inside look at their new line. Keep in mind that the title is not misleading. Don’t read this with a bias outlook and digest their mindset for interesting knowledge. These dudes are the real deal. Check out the interview with the Founders and their latest release below:
What was the catalyst for you to start designing clothes?
We are both designers. One of us is a fashion designer by trade and other does branding and art direction. Clothing has always been an important expression for both of us.
What is the storyline behind the “Slightly Used” product line?
It’s a bit of a criticism of consumer culture. Everything is so disposable these days. From one-use plastic bottles to fast fashion to endless creative content and it’s a connection to an intrinsic insatiability for the ephemeral…. My partner just rolled his eyes….
How did the quote “Life’s too short to be polite” come to be such a driving voice for your brand?
We are in a weird place culturally. You’re either a brash dickhead like Trump or you’re an overly PC millennial. We have divided ourselves into these two camps. Mike’s Deli exists outside these parameters. You can be honest without being offensive. You can get your point across without being reactionary. You can have a sense of humor about your own hypocrisy; human beings are full of contradictions. We’re all assholes by nature.
Did you go to school for design or are you self taught?
One of us attended design school; one of us dropped out of high school.
What steps do you take to get your garments to a finished product?
Sourcing excellent fabric is a big one. For the new drop, we have sourced some legit Italian Wools, created custom prints, and chenille patches devoted to old school letterman jackets and after-school specials. Quality is really important to Mike’s Deli, we work with a local factory so we are able to see the process from beginning to end.
What is the hardest part of growing a clothing line?
Finding your audience and being taken seriously amongst a sea of shit. There is a lot of cheap, throwaway clothing; we don’t want to be another brand contributing to the problem.
What advice would you give you one of your followers that are inspired by you?
Get off Instagram and make something.
What are your plans for the future?
Making more clothes and concepts. Maybe we’ll hook up with Elon Musk and go to Mars.
Breakdown of the pieces in the release:
1. Kush Bomber (the green one)
2. Sunnyside Letterman Jacket
3. 6-Pocket Denim Jacket
4. Keith Sweatpant
6. Flood Pant
7. Two Egg Sweatshirt
8. Drugs Combo Tee (not pictured)
9. Smoking Pant (not pictured)