Los Angeles is the city of stars and trendsetters. The PRESSURE- trendscouts found the young fashion label JUNKER DESIGNS, which is inspired from the glamorous lifestyle of the city and manufactures innovative rock’n’roll fashion for real rock stars in handwork.
Hello Tod and Giuliana, please introduce yourself to our readers of Pressure Magazine?
Hey my name is Tod, I grew up in Texas and have been making clothes and custom graphics for myself since high school. I also sing in a punk band called “Die Fast”.
I’m Giuliana, I’ve been making clothes and driving my parents crazy by not getting a real job for years now as Tod’s partner at Junker.
How did you come up with the idea to develop and produce your own clothing line?
Well when I was in grade school I used to draw all over my homework … when i got in trouble for that i started to draw on my clothes. Also i used to like to dress up like a Mummy or Tarzan and run around my neighborhood.
In high school I was in love with bands like the Ramones, and The Dead Boys, KISS, Lords Of The New Church, New York Dolls and Hanoi Rocks. I saw these bands dress however they wanted and that’s when i started dressing how i wanted. In Texas these clothes were not anywhere around me, so i would have to make them the best I could.
I painted jackets for friends and customized my clothes with patches and art.
When my earlier punk band “Spunk” broke up I moved to Los Angeles out of boredom. I met a girl here in LA who know how to make clothes using patterns and leather. I really wanted great leather pants and a vest. She showed me how to sew them. Soon after I was making vests for fun, Lenny Kravitz stylist saw one and bought it right away. This is how it all started!!
I still had a crappy screenprinting job but i continued to make clothes by stealing, taking fabrics from the trash and going to flea markets to find supplies. Really, the love of music and sci-fi movies made me want to make my own clothes.
Giuliana: I have been making clothes since college, wasn’t sure it was going to be a life choice, but it made me more money than bartending and kept me from having to have a boss or deal with jerks. As stressful as owning your own business can be, getting to create without any boundaries is beyond rewarding and well worth all the other nonsense.
What are the difference between your clothing line and others?
Well i think there are a few differences .
Tod: At Junker we use about 80 percent recycled materials – not for any worldy concerns or hippy beliefs. When we had no money it’s what we had to use, used clothing has an innate story. We really love the history. We do not come from a fashion background and have no formal training. We are self taught and have no rules, no notions of what could be right or wrong. If it’s cool (and we like it) we find a way to do it. I have a strange love for all things monsters, war, and sci-fi. I tend to draw things like monsters and skulls and love to use old images scanned from war history books and make them our own in some way. I really love to explore strange graphics, fabrics and unique patterns.
Giuliana: I think we bring a story to the clothes that many people don’t take the time to give their goods. We want you to wear something that feels as if it is made just for your body and that truly represents who you are.
You can’t do that in an Affliction shirt that 10,000 other jackasses have, but you can do that in a one of a kind piece by us.
Who should be directed to your products?
Tod: People who have an interest in art, fashion, and music have all shown an interest in our designs for different reasons. I think we are well known for the over the top rock and roll tough stuff. Although, that is not all we do. Your mom, as well as your brother, or sister, or father could all wear Junker. Anyone who can appreciate that we make this with our hands. Our pieces are not from a factory in fuck knows where, They’re made in downtown Los Angeles by us- with our grubby paws.
Giuliana: People who want to express themselves in a serious way, who aren’t afraid of getting a lot of attention.
In the U.S. there are already well-known personalities who are excited about your fashion. What do you think is the reason?
Tod: We burst onto the scene there in Los Angeles while following no rules. It was loud, bright, and messy. I think entertainers especially rockers and punks love that stuff. It’s like nothing else. At the time, back in 2000 2001, shops would not sell our clothes because they said … “they are rusty” …”they look dirty”… its says “shoot up drugs” on them.
One store owner told us “rock & roll is dead”, We promptly told her to “fuck off”. Look and see how respected Motley Crue and Aerosmith still are? They are huge!!! These people related to our work for that reason… they saw an untamed raw/ugly/beautiful mess… everyone loves that… everyone wants to ride an animal.
Giuliana: We dress performers as they should be dressed to stand out and be something spectacular, not like just some person off the street. That visual language matters when you’re trying to market yourself in a society that is so image driven.
You already plan your label to make public in Germany?
We are very excited to come to Germany and see what shops would sell our type of thing. Selling in Berlin is a big goal. We are asking all stores to come see the fashion show at White Trash Fast Food on 15th, December. We hope to meet store owners and visit their stores… We are also working on the new website and will have a new online store and can always do custom orders through email. Custom designs are our favorite by far.
I wouldn’t say we plan to simply go public in Germany. We’re well known amongst many artists around the globe. ie: The Vamps from Japan, Dexi Corp from France, 69Eyes from Finland, Tokio Hotel from Berlin, Dimmu Borgir from Norway and on and on.
Our biggest goal is becoming more recognized by the general population.
I’ve been drawing our Junker logo on my clothes since I was a teenager. I’ve had the privilege of seeing that logo on some of the most amazing musicians and actors in the world. I suppose as an artist I wake up each day working to put the Junker logo on something unique, dirty, sexy, and loud. As a business man I’m driven by who I’ll have the opportunity to put it on next.
Thank you Giuliana and Tod. The last words are yours.
Giuliana: We hope lots of people will come down and participate in our crazy show, it’s always so awesome to meet new people and get them excited about this thing we love so much.
Thank you very much for your time and have much success with your fashion line!
Interview von Marcus Berg im Dezember 2011
Pressure Tipp: High Fashion – Exklusive Marken internationaler Designer gibt es bei www.verypoolish.com
German Version: Junker Designs – Jungdesigner im Sturzflug auf Deutschland
Offizielle Homepage: www.junkerdesigns.com
Junker Design bei facebook: www.facebook.com/junkerdesigns
Fotos: Junker Designs