Life Is Unfair – Jack Mitchell Interview

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To coincide with the first range of clothing from Life Is Unfair, we look through the window of the company’s world with creator, Jack Mitchell.

 

Life Is Unfair creator, Jack Mitchell working on the brand.

Jack Mitchell working on Life Is Unfair at Misled headquarters. Interview by Jacob Sawyer.

 

We’re continuing to get into the backstories of the lesser known brands we represent at Slam City.

Life Is Unfair is the brainchild of Jack Mitchell, who you may have become aware of when we released their recent collaboration Nancy.

Jack has an interesting story to tell, a refreshing take on how things should be done, and a deep reverence for skateboarding. We caught up with him to find out more about his company and own story that lead to it.

 

“I ended up living in this crazy youth hostel which was essentially a big house, full of teenagers, who hate everything.”

 

First things first, where are you from and when did you start skating?

I suppose it began when I was born, in Hillingdon, which is sort of far off West London. I grew up in this place called Hayes, a smaller bit of that area, which is pretty shit. When I was 11, my friend and I got chased with a knife on our way to school, My mum freaked out and moved me to Bournemouth, where I spent the most important years growing up, I suppose. My emo teens.

I got into skating from the Tony Hawk games, before that I was just a PlayStation nerd. I wasn’t really allowed out of our flat because the area was kind of sketchy. So I spent an unhealthy amount of time in my room, melting my brain in front of a TV. One day, I visited my cousin and he was playing Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3. I was like, “Holy shit, I need this game.” I knew nothing about skating but something about watching him play that game was some insane visual overload. I was instantly hooked.

I had to wait until Christmas, which was like six months of pure hell, but basically I got into skating with that which was 2003, I think. I had this really bad Argos board which I used to paint over with the graphics I saw in the games and pretend I was Bucky Lasek [laughs]. I was allowed to skate this little pathway leading from the pavement to the door of our block. I did nose stall fakies by myself for about a year, which is pretty funny.

There was this crazy skate shop in someone’s shed called Steeze Skate Shop which I got a sweet Death trucker hat from. I think that was the only skate shop in the area. There are no traces of it online but maybe someone older can confirm I didn’t imagine it. A couple of years later, when I was 13 I saw this kid skating by himself in Bournemouth and ended up making friends with him. That’s when I really started skating everyday.

You had some unusual teenage years, right? 

For sure. When I was 16/17, I had a pretty turbulent relationship with my mum. One night my stepdad and I had this fight which resulted in me basically having nowhere to live anymore. Luckily, some of my friends took me in. After that I ended up living in this crazy youth hostel which was essentially a big house, full of teenagers, who hate everything.

These hostels were were unstaffed, it was like living in a Jeremy Kyle episode every day. Obviously, no one has their own place when they’re that young so it would be like a dozen of my friends, crammed in my room smoking weed, doing shit tattoos and watching skate videos.

 

 

A pretty intense next chapter.

At this point, I was trying to figure out what the fuck was going on in life and what I was doing. Mainly, I was on benefits, stealing everything I could find, doing graffiti, taking pictures and skating non-stop.

I started going to this skatepark a little further out and the locals were all my age or a bit older. Most of them had also figured out you can coast by living off the government and pretend to apply for jobs. When you’re actually just hanging out, skating, buying clothes and doing stupid shit.

I did that into my early-20s. Then I was like, “I need to do something with my life other than getting stoned and shooting crappy photos.” It felt like if I didn’t make a change, I was going to end up a 40 year old, angsty teenager who still hates their parents and lives off microwave burgers. That’s when I decided to try and move to London and do something else.

What made you want to come back here?

I ended up moving here again about three years ago. Before, I was manager at a store in Bournemouth called Consortium. The shop was cool because the guy who runs it [Nat] basically started selling bongs and stash cans from a market stall in the ’90s. Then he grew it organically into this little empire of cool shit: skating, sneakers, toys and stuff like that. At one point he had a skate shop and a nightclub sandwiched in one location. I’m a bit sad I was too young to witness those hi-jinx.

He taught me so much but I felt I couldn’t really get any higher in retail other than owning a store. Which I definitely wanted to do but I had no money, no idea, so I settled on moving to London and seeing what happened.

How’d you get by when you got here?

A couple of my best friends who are brother and sister, Elliot and Rachael have their own vintage stores, Serotonin Vintage and 194 Local on Brick Lane. Just up from Slam [East] actually.

They really threw me a bone and I ended up being manager at the girl’s store. It seemed a bit nuts at first but I ended up learning so much about mental designer clothes. Seeing old Gaultier, Cavalli, Vivienne Westwood and all these crazy looking clothes everyday. I saw what they were doing and little bits from each designer were things I wanted to make too. It had a really big influence on what I like and how I design now.

Two of my best friends from back home, Jamie [Platt] and Joe [McAlone] had already escaped Bournemouth and were living in Peckham so they let me crash on their sofa for a bit. Then Jamie broke his leg and moved home so I took his room. I had an actual bed and job so I was pretty set.

 

 

“I nearly died last year. It made me feel a bit sad that I could have left the planet forever and not really have had a real go at making clothes properly.”

 

When was Life Is Unfair born and what was the first thing you made?

I made the first Instagram post on May 2nd 2020 but before that, I made this all over print, knitted jumper in 2019. I love Malcolm in the Middle and thought it was funny how the titles are this 8-bit looking version of the Stüssy typeface. So I did the last lyric of the theme tune, which is “life is unfair”, in the same font and whacked it all over this jumper.

What made you decide to turn it into a brand?

I guess mainly selfish reasons, really. I nearly died last year. It made me feel a bit sad that I could have left the planet forever and not really have had a real go at making clothes properly. I’ve always made things. I wanted to show people and myself too, I guess, that I could do it.

What happened to you?

At the end of November, I got super sick and I was in bed for about two weeks, unable to breathe. Every time I stood up it was this feeling of dizziness.

I ended up being like, “Shit, I’m buggered” and went to A&E to see what was up. They diagnosed me with a pneumonia-style infection. But I was throwing up blood too which they were bugging out about because it’s not a symptom of pneumonia.

They gave me a CAT scan, where you get injected with liquid and they put you in some loud, spinning, magnet-thing. They took me out and said I had giant blood clots all over my lungs and, basically, I was fucked.

Man, I’m sorry to hear that. It sounds terrifying. What did they do to help you?

There weren’t any beds available so I had to spend my first night on the A&E emergency ward where they keep people who come in with messed up injuries. There was a woman opposite me with glass all in her face and she was screaming over and over for hours. It was gnarly and surreal to be there. Obviously, I was also freaking out.

I kept seeing these three doctors. Talking between them for about an hour, they eventually came over and told me they couldn’t decide what to do so they wanted to see if I had any input.

Option one was that they had a treatment which would clear all the blood clots instantly but a risk I could bleed on my brain and die.

Option two was a weaker treatment over a longer period of time. But, basically, if I took that and my blood pressure dropped to a certain level, the only thing that would save me is the stronger medicine. And at that point it would only be, like, 30% effective.

Wow, between the devil and the deep blue sea.

Yeah, I was just sat there, like, “Hmm, which one of these fucking things won’t kill me,” [laughs]. I ended up choosing the weaker one and spent the next ten days in intensive care, praying I didn’t die.

My body reacted pretty well with the one I chose. I got out of the hospital on December 19th, just in time for Christmas. It felt crazy, being in this hospital with tubes coming out my neck, nose and my arms. Then the next day I’m in my bed and it’s all festive. Super surreal.

Long story, not so short, to answer your question when I was in intensive care, I told myself that if I got out okay, I’d start a brand. It would be called Life Is Unfair because I was feeling sorry for myself at the time. That’s when it really started.

 

Jack, wallride nollie amongst his outpatient sticker and other Life Is Unfair paraphanalia. photo: Rich West

 

“It’s mainly a balance of those opposing sides of my personality. One is a grumpy old man complaining about bad shit in the world, the other is trying to be a nice human being and make the most of what we have”

 

Does that experience directly influence your approach to graphics?

Definitely. Before I got sick, my style was super aggressive and punk-influenced. I love that stuff, it’s still a big part of what I do. Nearly dying though, it made me have these other thoughts of just wanting to be happy and lead a simple, wholesome life. To have fun, not worry – that’s where the cutesy stuff really came about. Hearts, stars, glitter and shiny stickers.

When I think of what Life Is Unfair stands for, it’s mainly a balance of those opposing sides of my personality. One is a grumpy old man complaining about bad shit in the world, the other is trying to be a nice human being and make the most of what we have. If you look at my graphics, they usually have both those elements to some extent.

Has much skateboarding has been going on since your recovery?

The first four months [afterwards], I couldn’t skate because I had blood thinning injections that made me get crazy bruises and lumps around my stomach and legs.

Sirus [Gahan] had a photo show at the Vans store recently. He had a picture of me with a needle and my fucked up stomach. I was depressed in recovery too, eating shit-tons of snacks and I got super chubby at one point. It was weird to see [that photo] after months of not being on the injections.  It looked like a whole different person.

Those injections really sucked. The lumps would be super painful, even bending over was hard so skating was off the table for the most part. I skated a little in lockdown but, really, I’ve been a bit lazy this year. I did manage to shoot that wallride nollie with Rich though. I want to thank him for taking the time to shoot that with me.

Had you done anything like Life Is Unfair previously?

It kind of started just from hanging out at my nan’s house. She would always have arts and crafts stuff so, as a kid, I would be constantly making art. One day, she got me these fabric inks and I started making stencils. I cut up a sponge and dabbed the ink through the stencil onto a blank tee. That’s when I “started” making tees, around the same time I got my first board when I was 10 or 11.

In terms of other brands though, did you start any when you were younger?

Yes, it was so bad. I was that 13 year old kid in school, in the computer room at lunch, emailing board manufacturers despite having no way to ever pay for boards. Sorry, A Third Foot…

I had a couple of short-lived projects. When I was at school, my girlfriend at the time lent me some money to make some tees. I think I made £200 or something, just from making terrible, logo spoof tees of like Starbucks and Toy Story. My brand logo was these guns with angel wings. Might have to bring that one back actually.

From then until now, I just made random bits here and there. Zines, tees, badges – that kind of stuff. I used to make a lot of blankets which is super fun too. I like random bits of homeware. Pointless but you can never have too many of those.

Did you have someone to learn from or did you learn as you went along?

I guess I’m self taught. I didn’t get a computer until I was 22. Before that, I was doing collages and drawing stuff by hand. Then annoying my girlfriend’s brothers to use their scanners and Photoshop.

Once I got that computer, I probably didn’t leave my room for a year. Just figuring out bodge ways to make crappy graphics, do halftones and all that. I was definitely late to the party, as far as computer skills go. Maybe that’s why my style is a little rough but I kinda like it that way, I think.

 

 

“I don’t really know anything about “the industry” but maybe some people could do with taking their self a little less seriously from time to time. And having a bite of a cake in the shape of a frog.”

 

You recently held a bake sale for charity. How does that factor into your mission for Life Is Unfair?

The bake sale was the best day ever and it was pretty much the last nice day of summer. I’ve done charity stuff before because I went through a youth hostel scheme that was charity run. I also used to live off food banks. I usually start with something personal, then do stuff for other causes that are doing important too. There are so many small crowdfunding campaigns that directly help people in need. I can’t see there ever being a reason to stop doing a charity tee, event, or whatever it is to help a little bit. It’s not much but it’s something.

The bake sale came from wanting to do a fun event with Life Is Unfair but sort of hating how all the usual events are. It’s a bit pointless having a bunch of people come for free beers, vibing each other out, then leaving after half an hour – like 99% of the things that happen.

I don’t drink anyway so I wanted to do something I thought was cool. The bake sale was a way for me to stand around, eating snacks all day, whilst also making some money for a good cause. It’s probably one of the best ideas I’ve ever had.

Were you strictly selling cakes or did you have any Life Is Unfair products there too?

I actually pitched it to a couple of bigger companies. I wanted to do some special Life Is Unfair collab bits to sell but I think they all thought I was very uncool for having a bake sale. So the merch side sort of fell through. I don’t really know anything about “the industry” but maybe some people could do with taking their self a little less seriously from time to time. And having a bite of a cake in the shape of a frog.

Corporate rejection aside, everyone had a good time and I met loads of internet friends too which was awesome. My friends who were selling their old clothes, books and stuff also donated a bunch of money to the charity pot which I wasn’t expecting and made it a super special day for me. That whole day couldn’t have happened without Hetty [Douglas] so I want to say a big thank you to her for hooking it up! Love you Het.

The first products you released were A1 posters with different artists, the proceeds of each going to various causes. Sam Hughes designed one for the Ben Raemers Foundation, right? Tell us a bit more about that projects and the artists you worked with.

Basically, I didn’t know how to launch the brand in a way that wasn’t just, like, “Hey, here’s some crap I made. Enjoy!”

I’ve always made stuff myself and been a bit of a control freak. When I was thinking about how to launch Life Is Unfair, it made sense to stop being a maniac and see if my friends wanted to help out.

I came up with the idea of an online exhibition of posters because it was lockdown number one and I just like giant posters. It was a cool way to work with some good people in a way that fits together nicely. It felt like a cute way to start things off. Obviously the money is going to charity so it wasn’t pointless products being thrown into the world for no reason.

The posters were all done by my friends who I obviously love very much, I should probably plug them so please go support these nice humans: Rhiannon Boyd, Antoine Seapunch, Joe Crawley, Kyle Kobel and, of course, Sam Hughes.

 

Life Is Unfair launch posters

 

“Fun should always be at the top of the list of reasons you work with someone”

 

You share a studio with Sam right?

Yes, worst decision of my life [laughs]. Only joking Sam, you know ILY!

I became friends with Sam through one of my most special friends of all time, Hedgie. They both work at Supreme and I would go hang out and be annoying when I was recovering from the blood clots. You have to do loads of exercise so I would do big walks along the river and into Soho. I’d be this big, sweaty mess sat in the corner of the shop.

I always make zines and stickers and give them out. I guess Sam didn’t think they sucked so when he started making clothes, I put him in touch with Howie who prints all my stuff. I’d help here and there, with nerdy Photoshop stuff or flatlays, then we sort of became friends because we both hate everything. Including ourselves.

Sam is a great human being.

When I met Sam, I liked hanging out with him because he’s the only person I’ve met who thinks they’re dying as much as me. It made me feel like maybe I wasn’t a complete lunatic and there are probably many more of us out there who have severe health anxiety, 24/7. You’re not alone guys!

When a studio space came up, it worked out super cheap if I shared it with someone and we both boxes of product taking up our bedrooms. I asked if he wanted to share the space with me and he was down.

It’s in a basement with no natural light. The first thing we did is cover the walls with crazy crap we had both hoarded at home so it looks mental to a normal person. A lot of my friends have studios and they’re these big, white, clean spaces with plants. You come to ours and it’s this maniac cave. But I like that, we both make wacky shit so it’s just home to us, I think.

It seems like the two of you are on a similar creative page.

Yes, it’s cool actually because we have a lot of similar stuff we collect and reference in our designs. But we have our own styles and you can tell a Nancy graphic from a Life Is Unfair graphic despite them both probably being loud, gross and tacky. I can’t speak for Sam but it definitely makes me happy that our creations get to live side by side in the Slam store.

You also released a collaboration with his brand, Nancy last month. How’d that evolve?

We would always send each other what we’re working on, like “What do you think of this? It’s a bit too mental isn’t it?” It happened naturally from conversations like that.

“Yes! Let’s make some wacky shit.”

I found these cool old stuffed toys that Sonic Youth used to sell from their fanzine. They would buy old plushies in thrift stores and then put a badge on them that said “Hug me, I’m dirty” and sell them as merch. I thought that idea was stupid and funny. Sam sent me a picture of this sweatshirt he had that said something about hugs on it randomly at the same time, randomly. That’s when we agreed to do a bunch of stuff based around hugs because they’re cute, nice and we can have fun with it.

Fun should always be at the top of the list of reasons you work with someone, there’s definitely too much seriousness in skating and clothes as it is.

 

Life Is Unfair X Nancy

 

“It connects people with these same interests and you make legitimate friendships all from one T-Shirt, or sticker, whatever it is”

 

What’s the story behind the teddy bears?

I bought this big box of, like, 30 old teddies. Sam came to my house, we basically mutated them and made these lunatic teddy bears which became the centre of the collection. That’s the graphic you see on the board we made together.

With brands like yours and Sam’s, there’s something special. That DIY element which skateboarding was built upon has become much scarcer.

For sure, the term “DIY” has been rinsed for all it’s worth but it really is the best shit when you make your own stuff.

Everything we do has been commonplace since the ’70s and ’80s. Zines, badges, sewing patches, stickers, tees, dying stuff, spray painting animal prints, drawing on shoes… That’s all been done a million times but it never gets old because the feeling you get from doing stuff yourself, for no reason other than you like it and want it to exist, it’s definitely special.

We’re looking forward to it growing in here, having it’s own space to exist.

I would love to grow to the point where I can fill a whole section in the shop with my clothes. Just a little corner of chaos, animal prints, glitter, tie dye, puff inks, shiny embroidery. All that crazy stuff.

You mentioned Sonic Youth before, I can see you draw inspiration from the grunge era and made a Life Is Unfair mixtape too. What’s important to you about music from that time period?

I got this tape deck where you can make mixtapes with an aux cord. It has a microphone too so you can shout swear words over the songs. For me, as a kid, it was Brit-pop and fuzzy rock music, Jarvis Cocker and Courtney Love.

My dad’s a huge music nerd. Although my parents split up when I was younger, he would make me these crazy mixtapes so I felt like I had him in my life still. That’s how I got into most of the bands I listen to today. I think he knew if he got me hooked on good music, I would turn out alright even if he couldn’t really see me or what I was doing with my life. Music plays a big part in my graphics too.

How do you translate that into the design of your clothes?

The music references and how I design in general came from learning about brands from the ’90; what they did and why they did it. The guy who owns FUCT – Eric Brunetti, he loves the band Kiss. He made a bunch of graphics based around them. When I started getting into collecting old stuff, that’s when I saw what you can do with a t-shirt.

Referencing things in your graphics, it’s telling the story of the person behind the brand. If you looked at the things I’ve ripped off and laid them all out, you’d get a pretty good guide to my favourite music, films and magazines and all that. That’s what makes it special, working in this way.

It’s hard. A lot of people now will steal from anything and everything. That’s fine, the whole point is there’s no rules to this stuff. But on the flip side the story, if your brand is all over the place it’s just not very special. The people I like will make a tee, reference something you like it too, it feels cool. You want to support them, it means a bit more when you wear their clothes.

I like that you can recognise a reference in a graphic then, when you see whoever made it, you can be like, “Hey, I didn’t know you were into…” It connects people with these same interests. You make legitimate friendships all from one t-shirt, sticker, whatever it is.

I loved seeing the Hole shirt. I had one when I was younger.

One of the first things I put out was this rip on my favourite Sonic Youth tee. It sells for like $2000 so I know I’ll never own it. I was like, “Fuck it, I’ll just make my own and it will be even more special to me.”

It has Winona Ryder on it and says Sonic Youth in this crazy typeface made of weird people and characters. I found a copy of the magazine they took the Winona picture from, then printed off the text above the pic and stuck them together so it spelled “Life Is Unfair” instead of “Sonic Youth”.

I know when I wear it, there’s a chance I’ll meet someone who nerds out on that tee as much as me. I can only assume it will be a blossoming friendship or maybe even romance.

 

 

I would like to say that there is a place on my “team” for Jamie Platt, Billy Trick and Matlok Bennett Jones as soon as you guys burn out and become washed up, has-beens.

 

What do you do for a living outside of running the company?

I like to make a lot of expensive stickers and other expensive, useless things so I’m lucky to have a job as a designer for this LA based brand, Noon Goons. The guy running it is Los Angeles born and bred: skating, bikes, surfing and all that stuff.

It’s cool because I work with people who get me and aren’t just some random company asking for logos. I’m usually talking to them most of the week, I handle all the graphics and give my input on other stuff like prints or whatever I feel like designing. They’ve been good to me and I’ve learned endless amounts of things that have transferred into Life Is Unfair too. I have a lot of creative freedom. If I have an idea for a print, jacket or something, I can always pitch it to them which is pretty cool.

Do you have a team or group of people you flow? Billy Trick has been wearing your clothes.

I don’t think I would ever have a team, that would make it a bit too serious for me. Teams have their place but Life Is Unfair is for everyone really, regardless of if they skate or not. A lot of my friends who are good at skating will buy my stuff if they like it, which is really nice. I think there should be a move towards supporting your friends’ things, especially within skating where people are so used to getting free shit all the time. If you’re getting boards, shoes and all that for free, and your friend is making some nice things – then buy it!

I always buy from my friends. Even if they give me discount I think it’s polite to try and pay full price even if you don’t really want to or you’re a bit poor. I wouldn’t charge a friend full price for something if they asked but it’s always a cute suprise if they offer or buy something through the site.

Seeing orders from people you know must feel good.

I’m also quite crap at skating so if I did have a team, it would be full of people who are equally as bad as me or worse. Life is a bit more fun when you’re shit at skateboarding. That being said, I would like to say that there is a place on my “team” for Jamie Platt, Billy Trick and Matlok Bennett Jones as soon as you guys burn out and become washed up, has-beens.

The Bernardine Dohrn board you released was cool. Will you continue to release hardgoods?

I ended up watching a bunch of videos on her, there’s so much stuff out there. Her FBI mugshot was too good not to run on a board. I put it with the word “destroy” above which I use all the time in my work, it’s a little nod to Vivienne Westwood.

I want to keep making boards if I can because it’s a bit weird doing artwork that’s super long and thin. It usually takes me a while so it’s a good distraction from life anxieties as it keeps me occupied. Coronavirus managed to mess up all the board manufacturing so there are no boards this time. Next year I’ve got some coming out in very groovy colours.

Can you give us a laundry list of inspiration behind Life Is Unfair…

I love making lists so I’ll get too excited and end up with a 100 bullet points if I don’t limit it to five. I guess to summarise what inspires me to do what I do it would be: Impending death, animal prints, really big graphics, sexiness and swear words, natural dyes and googly eyes.

Your new stuff is the first proper collection you’ve put together. Do you have a favourite item you’re really pleased with?

Well, I broke up with my girlfriend and ended up making a million graphics about love. I didn’t really notice it until the end so I had to scrap half of it. But I did let my favourite heartbreak-related graphics stay in because they’re very cute. Some of my best stuff is done when I’m sad anyway.

The puff hoodie is probably my favourite, because I love novelty inks, the ‘Apocolypse’ tee also because I kept a typo in as it made me laugh, then maybe the sofa pants. They’re supposed to look like the knees have been smashed in with hammers.

Can you tell us more about your appointment only, vintage skate shop that’s in the works?

Yeah, my friend Elliot – who I mentioned earlier, and I, we love old skate stuff. We were collecting for ourselves and then sort of came up with the idea to do a shop where all the clothes are originals from the ’80s right through to the 2000s. We named it Misled Skateshop, a Zero homage.

It takes a lot of time and money to find this stuff. It’s been about three years of mayhem to get to this point but, we should be open soon. We’ve already had so many people messaging us, wanting to get the first appointment. I think it might be complete chaos when it does open.

The reason it’s appointment only is because it’s a bit of a mental idea. This stuff is like decades old, and isn’t sitting around in multiple sizes, so you really have to put in work to even get a rail of tees together. Sometimes, you have to start small and see how you can grow. The appointment only format lets us do that. We know a lot of collectors already and there are endless people who love a certain era in skating, either for nostalgic reasons or because the skating is better.

It also means we don’t have to worry about random customers coming in and out; the classic skate shop balance between letting smelly skater friends hang out and also needing to not scare actual customers away. In the space you can come and hang out as long as you want, watch some skate videos and play video games, look at some crazy old clothes. If you don’t have any money you can just take some free stickers or try to steal one of the old mags we have stacks of.

 

 

“I’m really anti gatekeeper in mentality, no-one is born with infinite knowledge … There should be a big effort from older heads to help younger kids come up and make stuff for themselves”

 

Any specific gems you’re sat on?

Lots of gems! Old Powell-Peralta shirts, Matt Hensley gear, early Alien Workshop stuff, OG Blind jeans and even the Osiris G bag with the built in speakers. That was Elliot’s childhood bag, I think he’s going to take it to the grave with him. Maybe come in with a bribe and we’ll see [laughs]

What do you think about the little boom of new companies popping up in London?

When I moved back here, I was so exited to be around a bunch of people making stuff. Then I got here and I was so bummed because no one was really doing anything. The only person I met, running a little brand that didn’t suck, was Luca at a Hidden Mangroves. I got this cool scarf from him the day after I met him and I still wear it.

Now, it feels like there’s this little wave bubbling here in London. I love Nick [Mason – Always Do What You Should Do] and it’s been crazy to see how far he’s taken his stuff since we met. Obviously, Nancy is the bestest, Fungibles are super sick because they also make some wacky gear. Lloyd has been doing some cool graphic stuff with Passion. I guess I’m making my stuff, trying to help however I can to grow the scene a little. I want to get to the point where we can do a little street fair or something in the summer to coincide with the next bake sale, that would be cool.

Is there anyone younger than yourself, coming up, that you’re a fan of?

So many. I’m really anti-gatekeeper in mentality, no-one is born with infinite knowledge about making stuff. We all learn at some point. There should be a big effort from older heads to help younger kids come up and make stuff for themselves.

I’m super inspired lately by this group of kids making really cool shit. They all have their own thing: knitting, painting, poetry, taking photos, making tees – they do it all. They have this really nice group of friends, some of them skate and some of them don’t. It’s just cool to see these nice people killing it at 18/19 years old. One of them, Joe, he sews all my labels in for me, takes really good pictures and is making a book that’s coming out next year. It will be killer.

What can we expect from Life Is Unfair in 2021?

More charitable snacks, more spelling mistakes, more fancy clothes and also this thing I’m doing called the House ‘O Junk.

If anyone has been to Slam on a weekend, you would have seen the Brick Lane market. I always thought it would be cool to have a stall there and I recently got accepted as a trader. So I’ll be your weekend neighbour as of next year which will be epic. I’ll be selling some one-off, hand made Life Is Unfair creations. Alongside some nice knitted bits by friends, zines, patches, candles and badges and random, old, sexy trinkets and stupid novelties.

A message to the community…

Don’t be a meanie.

Anything else?

I’d like to thank Slam for stocking my stuff and you – Jake, for letting me bore the pants off everyone with my life story. Lots of love to all my friends who support me and to everyone who buys my stuff, I love you all! Also a special shoutout to my friend Matt at The Pale Girls for keeping me inspired for all these years!

 

 

 


 

More from the brands we back and the people behind them: Skateboard Cafe with Rich SmithRassvet with Tolia TitaevAlcohol Blanket with Ollie Lock.