Chrystie Brand Interview with Pep Kim

We’re psyched to have you guys in the shop. What got you into starting a sock company?

Me and Aaron skate and hang out together a lot and one day on a mission, we started talking about how important socks are for skating. Not even for skating man. If a pair of socks doesn’t fit, it really can ruin your day for many different reasons. Some don’t absorb sweat so well, some are way too slippery etc. And the night we talked about socks, I realized there’s not even one good sock company from east coast so I decided to give it a shot. 

What’s up with the brand? For those who don’t know can you tell us about the team and what you are working on for the future?

I always liked men’s wear brand with feminine name. I don’t know why. And I always liked Chrystie St in Chinatown/LES for many reasons. There are soccer fields I always play on, there’re also historical skate spots through the street as well. For the brand name, I had couple other options but if you think too much you can never decide. So after checking the name with Aaron, we just decided to go with it.

For the team, I kinda wanted to keep it with fresh and up & coming dudes. Of course, without respect to the old school skate generations, the whole industry might collapse but in terms of branding, relying on couple legend skateboarders is very dangerous marketing way I think these days.

Dick and Josh started skating for Quasi not too long before we launched the brand and they are kinda NY dynamic duo power house. But trust me man, there are at least dozen more skaters I wanted to start with but in order to keep things tight, we had to decide to grow it slowly. And I happened to skate with John Baragwanath one day and he was super impressive so I also decided to go with him. Nate from philly also has great style. 

We are working on couple capsule collections now and from the second season we’ll create couple different shapes and styles. Basically I’d like to grow this project not only sock company but also interesting creative platform.

Being based in NY what are some of the challenges you face doing what you’re doing?

Everything. Seriously man. Except for those who were born from rich families, everyone would agree with this. Shit’s hard here. But I love challenging situations. It’s either you giving up or hanging in there. But I def see more advantage being based in NY.

What’s the positive side to being based here?

Having so many great opportunities to meet amazing people in any industry. Of course you gotta be nice to get connected with right people. I’m genuinely not good at cool-guy thing so I just always try to be nice to people. haha.

Also so many different great culture channels. 

The designs are very different from say Stance or Socco, what influenced the look you guys have?

I think what’s funny these days is design really doesn’t matter, in my opinion. It maybe does to those who would buy products without knowing what skate culture is. But I think it more matters the image and character behind the brand. Look Bronze man. In terms of aesthetics of design whatever, their first couple collections were not the most beautiful stuff but because their whole character behind the brand is something you never experienced/seen before, so the whole skate industry is so psyched on it. What about Johnny Wilson crew and GX1000? I think they are the most 3 exciting skate crew in the whole skate world right now. 

Of course not that we don’t care about the design but our first goal is producing stuff in the best quality possible and having our own powerful image behind the brand. 

Finally. why should people buy your stuff….I mean, what sets you apart from the competition?

I just wanna make people psyched on our skaters first. Having right crew is the most important thing, in my opinion. And then they will be psyched on our product quality organically. I don’t want to follow all these traditional marketing strategy. Our goal is not keeping it “independent brand.”. We’ll grow this brand bigger but slowly.