Posted on 14 Jun By Visionarism

Hidden Lab : Interview.

HIDDENLAB is a Leeds based Menswear brand that re-interprets classic streetwear silhouettes using high end materials and British craftsmanship. True to their roots, every Hidden Lab piece is made in the UK with quality fabrics sourced from local suppliers and mills. We caught up with Aaron to learn about the brand’s origins, and of course, vision.

How old is HL?

We have been going since 2013, but up until recently this was mainly Bespoke/Custom work.

Describe the brand in 3 words?

Quality British Streetwear.

Who is the HL customer?

People who appreciate the designs, effort and craftsmanship that has gone into each piece. We don’t want to pigeonhole ourselves with a particular scene/or group of people. Anyone who feels comfortable wearing our products can.

How has Social Media affected you?

Social media has changed everything. We can be internationally accessible without needing to have a physical presence in-store.  Most importantly, it allows us to engage and communicate our brand with customers, telling a story on how each product is made. We can promote our products quicker and gain exposure at a relatively low cost, which definitely helps smaller brands like ourselves. As everyone is using social media to promote, it also means that we have to stay on top of our game, as we can see what other labels are doing and how customers are reacting to them.

What’s the most challenging part of the HL process?

Production. As we aren’t just printing onto blanks, each piece can take up to 7 hours to complete, which is made up of cutting fabrics, embroidering them and then sewing it all together using only highly skilled tailors. With the recent exposure and unprecedented demand we’ve had, originally it had been tricky to churn out products as quickly as we’d like, which led us to hiring more tailors and making more stock in order to keep up. We don’t have the serious investment major labels have to invest in huge amounts of stock and therefore we have to be as pro and reactive as possible in order to fulfil demand. As all of our pieces are Made in England, this also costs us a lot more financially, but it’s totally worth it.

Where do you see yourselves in 5 yrs?

As a trend can blow over at any moment, it’s pivotal that we maintain our core values and our consistency in releasing top quality statement pieces. Where this takes us, we shall see.

What’s your dream collab?

Nike. We grew up collecting rare Nikes/Js and whilst they’ve made an effort in re-inventing OG pieces with premium quality materials, it would be a dream to work on a completely new range and not just another retro release, making use of these fabrics.

Who or what are your influences?

As two 23yr old guys, we are essentially our own customer. We’ve been into the same brands and influencers as everyone else. My favourite brands over the years include Nike, Supreme, BAPE, APC, Acne, Our Legacy, Margiela, Common projects, Dior Homme and Saint Laurent etc etc. Our preferences have of course changed over time and so we often take a combination of our favourite elements from some of these brands and make pieces to reflect our current tastes.

I’d say this is best demonstrated with our most recent Souvenir Jackets. I wanted a statement Spring/Summer jacket, but nothing on the market really stood out to me – so why not make one. We’ve been crafting what is essentially a streetwear silhouette, using cotton velvet with a silk coating, an extremely luxe and high end fabric, demonstrating our love for both ends of the market.

I find it sad to see so many brands imitating style icons and other brands in order to make a quick buck, then going out of sight when the trend fades. Fashion can be fickle and so it’s important that we think like customers and make products that we’d all personally love to wear, but only the ones that haven’t been created yet :).”