In light of the new collection dropping online we caught up with Damian Malontie - the man behind cult London based label 'Care Free'.
Hows life Damian? You've just been to Marrakech? What was going on? Who were you out there with?
Life good, can't complain, still grinding but at least I'm doing what I want to do. I was in Marrakech for Atlas Electronic Festival with Kamaal Williams / Henry Wu who curated a Black Focus Records stage.
Your blog and website were designed to give talented / creative people who were doing good things the light they deserve right? Is this how you would explain the ethos of Care Free as a brand?
Yeah I would, the people I work with creatively are mostly up and coming and people I see long term potential with to grow. From graphics to photos / videos. They are all untapped talent.
Do you see the brand now taking over the the blog and becoming the main focus?
Hmm I guess the brand is getting slightly more love than the blog, but that's why I done it that way, the brand is nice and easy to look at. People wearing the brand may not even know what they are representing which happens a lot nowadays but at least they representing something positive. The blog is there for whoever wants it.
Who do you see wearing Care Free? Do you have a certain demographic in mind or is it for everyone?
I've been in this thing for a long time, I'm never one for saying I don't want a certain type of people wearing my stuff or if I see a certain crowd in a brand I wont't wear it. No matter what others may think of people that wear CareFree you can't disrupt or deny the vibes. I hope i'm putting out right energy so people don't feel like that. My demographic is everyone, sneaker heads, intellectuals, real music lovers everyone.
The brand has gone from something that a small group of people "in the know" were taking notice of to something much bigger pretty quickly. Where do you see it going from here? What would be the best case scenario for you?
Best Scenario is to have a few more stockist by the end of the year and I guess to do more regular seasonal drops and have them sell out quite quickly.
I heard on an interview that you tell yourself everyday that your'e going to be a millionaire. How important is that to you?
The amount of a million isn't that important but I think what is is that I have capital to make an actual change and do quality art. Not too many people are doing stuff of actual substance and if they are claiming to, their real life interactions with people portray a different story.
You've worked all over the shop over the years. I know you did a stint at Gimme 5, Nike, Patta and your'e at Stussy now. Have you always been in fashion type roles in and have you always been in London?
Always been in London true, and I guess once I started working on this particular it was something I preferred over working for a corporate type. I can and have experience to do so, but I prefer being on this side.
What are your favourite brands right now and why?
Favourite brands would alway be Stussy, since I was young always been copping their stuff and Our Legacy for the smarter occasions. Just nice to mix it up a little.
Are you still looking to drop twice a year with five pieces per season? Do you plan on branching out into alternative items or is the plan to keep it simple?
Yep that's the maximum I'm looking to do. I'm not looking to take over the world in this clothing lane, more just to show people that I can do something from the ground up and hopefully collaborate with others outside of CareFree. Plan is definitely keep it simple. Way too many people trying too hard. It's easier to standout by keeping it simple and being yourself.
There are hints at something happening with Mizuno? Can you fill us in?
All I can say is CareFree and Mizuno will definitely have product coming, what it is and when I would prefer not to say.
You've also spoken about a second brand that's in the works. Any info on that or is it all under wraps for now?
Second brand will be more closely related to the blog, it shares the same logo. I don't plan to put that into production for a good few years. For now main focus is Care Free.
I hear your'e big into your reading. What are you reading now and do you have any recent recommendations?
Kwame Nkrumah, Consciencism and Undoing the demos by Wendy Brown.
Your'e also a music man. Can you list us your five current favourite tunes new or old?
Sun Runners - Lust For Life, NxWorries - Kutless, Senay - Osiris Instrumental, A2 - Fill the Void, Lonnie Liston Smith - Bridge Through Time, AZ - Gimme yours, Sun Runners - What Goes Around Comes Around, Masta Ace - Eastbound, Prophet - I Do Love.
Check the Guest Selections Mix below. Damians current favourite tracks mixed by us.