Hey everyone, it’s been a long time since I last wrote something here but I wanted to write today about an incredible new clothing line, Lifewar, recently started by one of my best friends. The first collection recently dropped and it boasts a strong theme and message of not conforming to the norm of every day life, forging your own path, and refining your own identity.
I know that they’ve already got big things on the horizon and I urge to you take a peek at some of the awesome items that are available for purchase and support a truly honest and amazing up-and-coming company and community. Check out the exclusive interview below and be sure to visit lifewar.co to cop some new threads.
Can you tell me about what initially inspired you to start a clothing line?
I developed an interest in street wear before I got into music. When I started listening to more underground music, especially in the early 2000’s, a lot of brands came out of the woodwork that have developed within the ethos of music (Glamour Kills, Jedidiah, etc.) You really don’t see too much of that anymore, and when you do, it’s often corny and parodic. After noticing that bands were wearing Off White and Supreme during gigs, I saw a void in the market for a brand that combined the culture and aesthetics of street wear with the ethos and comradery of underground music, without being just “another musician who started a clothing brand.” I wanted to create a brand that catered to kids that share a common bond with this music scene, while introducing modern design elements one would find in a contemporary street wear brand.
What does the name “Lifewar” mean to you and how does it fit into your overall branding?
One of my favorite bands of all time is the Christian metal band Demon Hunter, and the brand is named after one of their songs. The lyrics are essentially breaking down Ryan’s [Clark, vocalist] life 5 years at a time. When talking about the meaning of the song, he talked about us all being born innocent and clean, and then we “crawl into the dirt” of sin like a soldier at war. I sort of had a different interpretation; when looking at one’s life, you are born being told “you can do anything you put your mind to.” However, once you get older, your peers start to steer you in the path of “realistic” expectations to ensure social security. You begin to wonder if working long term for something you are passionate about is worth disappointing those around you by not adhering their expectations. In essence, every day is a fight, but to live life on your own terms is a war. I know it’s a far cry from the original meaning behind the song, but it has resonated with me for a while.
Your first installment of Lifewar was recently released as the “Death to False Trends” collection. Why did you pick that particular statement to coincide with your first collection?
Death to False Trends was just a good introduction to the message of the brand. I wanted to create a mantra within the realm of “believe in yourself” or “don’t give a fuck what everybody else thinks” while maintaining authenticity, as it’s super simple to slap one of these lines on a shirt and sell it for $27. A false trend is defined as an expectation to follow a defined path or a sociocultural norm, and the mantra is meant to encourage creative/self-starting individuals to keep up the fight. Life sucks sometimes, but wipe the blood off and keep going.
Is there anything in particular that influences the designs of your items? Where do you draw inspiration from?
Art and music are huge influential factors that play into our designs. Particularly, we try to match the nuances of present-day post-hardcore merchandise as much as we can. We’re starting to see a trend of merch focusing less on illustration and artistic prowess and more on typographical elements and geometric/photographic figures to convey an aesthetic or mood. A few bands in the scene illustrate this perfectly, including Silent Planet, Hundredth, Being as an Ocean, and Architects.
However, there are a few influences we draw from that tie back into developing a presence as a streetwear brand rather than just copying merch ideas. I pretty much follow everything Virgil Abloh is doing, from his work with Louis Vuitton to his mainstay in Off White. The man is simply a genius. Also, I’m a huge fan of a French artist named Gaetan Bernade. He’s known for his collodion photography and work with textures that I’m trying to incorporate in future pieces.
Do you have any particular favorite items in this collection?
The DOMUM piece is probably the piece I’m most proud of in this collection. It’s a piece that illustrates the notion of planting seeds in new soil. Moving to a bigger city from a small town, it’s kind of a struggle to feel welcome when you first get used to things. Once you start to surround yourself with like-minded people, you create a home for yourself in whatever community you immerse yourself with in that city.
I also have to mention our CARRY ON piece because I feel it is the staple in the entire collection. It has a narrative on the back side that was contributed from lyrics from a song from my friends in a band called ‘avoid.’ I love those guys and the messages they convey in their music, so the fact that we have the opportunity to showcase their art on this piece is really amazing.
Now that your first collection has been released what can people expect moving forward?
We plan on releasing a second pressing of DEATH TO FALSE TRENDS to bring new life to the collection. However, I’m really excited for the next collection we’re working on; honestly, it’s going to blow D2FT out of the water. Other than that, we’re working with a few organizations on some give-aways and collaborations that I’m so excited about.
Anything else you want to add?
I just want to reiterate that Lifewar is so much more than a brand; it’s a community. We come together as vagabonds in today’s world, and it can be hard to cope by yourself. If you want to talk about anything, we’re always here to listen. Shoot us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you need somebody to talk to. We’re only here for you.
DEATH TO FALSE TRENDS available now!