Exclusive Interview: Don Bleek Talks To Forever Fly Founder Drew

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New York Fashion Week is just about over! I attended various pop-up events and fashion shows at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week including the JoyRich Pop-Up Shop, where I interviewed the brand’s Creative Director David Melgar, the KidsRock! show and the FrontRow Spring 2014 presentation. Tonight, I attend my final show, Martin de Tours‘ first ever presentation during NYFW. Even though, the last week and a half was very hectic for me, I still found time to interview Forever Fly’s founder Drew. I like supporting independent designers! If you don’t know about Forever Fly, if you haven’t been reading the posts on YDBR, the leather joggers and python tee-shirts is a favorite of Fabolous, Bow Wow, DJ Clue and Sebastian Mikael. Drew got his start in the fashion industry at Rich Yung, a brand started by Fabolous, Cheo and Kevin Webb. Read the interview below:

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$200 Forever Fly Python Tee-Shirt

Why did you choose Forever Fly as the name of your clothing line?

I looked at inspirations such as James Dean, River Phoenix, Kurt Cobain and these legends passed at such young ages but yet they remain forever fly despite their absence. I feel that a fashion brand should be just as timeless, and just as memorable.

When did Forever Fly officially launched?

Forever Fly launched December 2010

After the launched of Forever Fly, how long did it take in order for it to take off?

It took off immediately with the support of amazing friends and an amazing line that myself and my designers collaborated on.

How do you come up with the different leather and python designs?

I was inspired by the textures and different patterns I came across while exploring ways to innovate with the brand. The feel and the wear of each leather chosen is an ode to a casual lifestyle for the professional guy.

What inspired you to do a primary leather clothing line; what’s the inspiration behind the line?

Leather to me is a sign of luxury and so I took cue from that because Forever Fly is becoming more and more a luxury focused brand. With each season we are growing into a stronger more mature market and so I wanted that reflected with this season, and with the next.

When you first launched Forever Fly, did you have any investors to help you out or did you just work and saved your money?

When Forever Fly first launched it was all organic. We worked out of passion and out of creating from our dreams.

What are some of the things that you learned so far as an independent fashion designer?

So far I’ve learned that branding is one of the most important things to focus on. Your brand stays with you forever and how you project it to the world is exactly how they’ll look at you 10 years from now, 20 years from now. I also learned that sometimes your audiences don’t know what they want yet, you have to show them what they want, so it’s up to you to innovate and creating an amazing line.

Photos Credits: Forever Fly

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NEXT PAGE: THE REST OF MY INTERVIEW WITH FOREVER FLY’S FOUNDER DREW

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$400 Forever Fly Leather Joggers

How is Forever Fly different from other independent brands on the market?

I think the difference between Forever Fly and other independent brands is that we are trying to flip the script on fashion by incorporating a lot of what we see on the streets to what we want to see on the runway.

Do you consider Forever Fly urban or upscale?

We were an urban based brand, but are now becoming more of an upscale brand which was our initial aim.

What audience are you trying to reach?

The young and optimistic crowd who enjoys work and play in comfortable and stylish clothing.

How would you describe the current trends in fashion?

Street-wear is trying to be high fashion, and high fashion is trying to be street-wear.  Street wear has inspired a lot of major fashion brands. You can see that with DKNY, you can see that with Givenchy.  And then you have street-wear brands presenting entire collections like they’re major fashion houses. It’s a cycle.

Besides Forever Fly, what are some of your favorite fashion brands?

Some of my favorite fashion brands are Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci, Dior by Kris Van Assche, Louis Vuitton by Kim Jones. I also enjoyed Balenciaga by Nicholas Ghesquière and their new creative director Alexander Wang. He’s killing it over there.

Who are some of your fashion influences?

Some of my influences include Riccardo Tisci, Kris Van Assche, and Kim Jones. Amazing menswear designers that I wear often and take inspiration from a lot.

Are there any designers you would collaborate with if you are given the opportunity?

Any of the above really, they’re all brilliant designers and I’d be honored to work with them.

Where do you see yourself and Forever Fly in the future?

In Paris, showing our collection at the Grand Palais.

What is your ultimate gold? Where do you want your path to lead?

My ultimate goal for Forever Fly is to see my vision for the brand accomplished and to be successful.

What can we expect from the FW 2013-14 collection?

Look for a dark pallet using exotic leathers and modern silhouettes that you could wear on Wallstreet, and in Brooklyn.

Besides your online shop, where else is Forever Fly sold?

It is sold exclusively online, that way we maintain a direct relationship with our buyers and can continue to grow with them.

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$40 Fly Over Everything Snapback

Be sure to visit Forever Fly’s online shop here!

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