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Interview: Starter & Clements Ribeiro Collaboration

Tuesday 03 February 2015

There’s a new collaboration around town, and it’s between Starter Black Label, who specialise in streetwear, and Clements Ribeiro, who take inspirations from one half of the brand’s design team’s routes in Brazil. And together, they’ve created a unisex collection that will be available this month.

Merging together archival product designs of Starter Black Label, and also their signature embroidery, with Clements Ribeiro’s colourful floral design have created this hugely contrasting collection. Head to Starter Black Label or Clements Ribeiro to spice up your streetwear wardrobe with a burst of floral shaped colour.

How did you decipher what brand was going to individually bring to the collaboration?

It was a no brainer; Starter Black Label’s great classic sportswear shapes and Clements Ribeiro’s bold and feminine prints – the contrast was so strong. It was clear from the first discussion that it would generate very original items, covetable and collectable.

Jersey web

Clements Ribeiro was originally a more feminine design label, with the extension of menswear cashmere line, accessories and baby wear, is this collaboration a way of expanding even further?

Yes indeed. It brings the brands vocabulary to completely new demographic group, which, aside the marketing makes for a really refreshing exercise.

And Clements Ribeiro brought the pattern aspect to the designs, what were the prints inspired by?

The bold floral is an interpretation of a traditional Brazilian floral print (‘chita’). The black background however is completely not traditional, the scale and the colour treatment further updating the design. Inacio is from Brazil, therefore there’s a unique affinity to the theme.

And how about the structures by Starter, I heard they were inspired by the original 80s and 90s designs from the brand?

Yes, we picked those amazing basketball shorts, the classic varsity jacket as well, the American football t-shirt, and to completely the range we included a hooded sweatshirt and of course, the snap back hats.

Did you want that retro sports feel to the collaboration?

The retro aspect is important as a starting point. Authentic shapes are always so cool. But we like the fact that the final designs simply look thoroughly contemporary.

Basketball Shorts - Clements Ribeiro x Starter - leo@radiatorpr.com

What made you go unisex rather than aimed at one particular sex?

We love the way the masculine cut of the pieces draped over the feminine body. It is another twist of the collaboration, another contrast. Besides, with those colours and print, it was simply inevitable.

What type of man/woman would wear these designs?

Urban types with a very casual lifestyle, interested in fashion but not brands or trends.

How do you feel this collaboration represents each brand?

We feel it gives both brands a new twist, demanding a second take from both our publics. It is always refreshing for a brand to release something unexpected, something that celebrates what the brand stands for, as well as opening up new possibilities.

Do you have a favourite piece from the collection?

The basketball shorts, they are ridiculously cool.

If the collection were a song, what would it be?

Years & Years – Desire