The Danish designer on growing up on a skateboard and his new upcoming collaborative collection with Kyle Stewart from the Goodhood store
Inspired by 80s skateboarding, Copenhagen-based Soulland and East London store Goodhood are this week launching a small capsule collection of shirts, Tees, sweatshirts and a jacket. In a monochrome colour palette, the collection plays with founder Silas Adler’s love of graphics and comfortable yet stylish garments – perfect for skating whether it’s 1983 or 2013.
“I started skating when I was 10 years old. I just saw a kid on the street and instantly knew that it was something for me. Both me and Kyle from Goodhood grew up on skateboards; me in Copenhagen and Kyle in Edinburgh. So for both of us it’s an important part of who we are. Growing up, the skate culture was very important. It taught me all the most important things I know. I learned so much about being open and thinking of the world as something that’s there for you to discover. I learned to think internationally. When you travel with skateboarding you see cities and countries from a different angle than a tourist, and that is something I still do when I travel today. But it has for sure also been the saver for many kids that had a hard time growing up. I had a tough time in school and got into trouble a lot – but skateboarding made me focus. It made me stop thinking of all the everyday stuff that fills your brain and just be in the present. It´s hard to describe… and maybe that´s the point.
”Growing up, the skate culture was very important. It taught me all the most important things I know”
Skateboarding in the 80s was very special. It was what you call the second wave. The whole Powell Peralta movement made Hosi, Hawk, Mullen and Gurerro in to mega superstars. Skateboarding was extremely big. But then something happened. Vert skating died and so did skateboarding in the public eye. And a lot of these kids with no education that lived like superstars where all of a sudden on their own. Skateboarding in the 80s was also neon flashy in a cool way. And when street skating took over and re-boosted in the 90s as the third wave it was a lot more rugged.
Today I don’t get to skate as much as I’d like to; a kid and a busy job takes up most of my time. But I skated everyday between the ages of 10 and 20. So I consider myself a skater. I check skateboarding on the internet every day. In that sense I think it´s the same today. But now there is just so much money and big corporate companies that are in it for the cash. I don´t know if it’s good or bad.And I think a lot of the skate clothing is defined by bad quality and logo prints… plus it looks the same every season. It´s very conservative if you think about it. But I grew up on it so I really love it. I rarely wear skateboard clothing but a lot of my Soulland clothes are inspired by it actually. I never thought about that before but I know it´s pretty clear to me… For the Goodhood collaboration we also added bits of Oscar Wilde’s poetry. We wanted to put in a tint of culture in the design. And a contrast. That´s when clothing is the most interesting I think…
We’ve been working with Kyle and Jo from Goodhood for many years now. They’ve been supporters since day one. We talked about doing a collaboration in the past but this time I just felt like all the pieces fell into place. I like how they have the ability to have a clear vision and also, when you get to know them a bit, you start to understand that everything they do is about them and their personal aesthetics. I think that’s something that’s rare these days.
“Skateboarding in the 80s was also neon flashy in a cool way. And when street skating took over and re-boosted in the 90s as the third wave it was a lot more rugged”
I think it’s a strength when you can see and feel the personality – their style and visual image are very strong. We try to do the same thing with Soulland. We want a strong design DNA and a red thread running through everything we do and still make it personal. But, of course, a store and a brand is different.
I have to create the feeling based on one collection and Goodhood has to do it with a wide roster of brands. Both things can be a struggle… but it’s also very rewarding at the same time!”
Interview David Hellqvist
Illustration Clara Lacy
The Soulland x Goodhood collaboration launches on November 7, 2013