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How This Gender-Neutral Denim Brand Turns Wardrobe Staples Into Statements

For Ullac, making denim is driven by three things: function, the Beastie Boys and independent manufacturing.

Founded by Christopher Lynd and Gavin Weigh in 2017, the European brand has offices in London and Helsinki, though its manufacturing operations are handled by a family atelier dubbed “the Dini” in Italy.

The brand, which operates exclusively online, aims to design and produce gender-neutral denim for everyone, while providing high-quality and durable wardrobe options that cull inspiration from bygone decades and culture.

“What I love about this whole thing is knowing people are deciding to wear Ullac, maybe someone is listening to northern soul in the morning and they without thinking grab the big jeans, maybe Beastie Boys and they grab the Type 2,” Lynd told Rivet. “Maybe they are watching Scream the night before and decide to not wear the full Painter suit in case somebody tries to murder them? Probably not but I’m sure you hear me.”

Ullac’s unisex collection features key denim staples, like jean jackets, chambray shirts, pants and jeans, that retail from $129 to $166. Popular cuts include the Pattern 014 painter jacket, the Pattern 012 painter pants, the Pattern 011 big jeans and the Pattern 015 chambray shirt, which is currently sold out on Ullac’s website.

Materials and fabrics also come into play with Ullac’s denim offering. Ecru twill and 13 oz. raw selvedge denim make an appearance, while all pieces in the collection are made with 100 percent cotton. Candiani’s 16 oz. denim remains a core denim fabric for the brand, too.

“It is not too heavy and softens up so nicely that’s its super accessible to everyone without compromising on the quality and durability that denim dudes are after,” Lynd said of the Candiani fabric.

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Ullac is also pursuing new performance materials, like a herringbone twill from the U.K. with a waterproof treatment.

“I like to make clothes that can be worn by girls and boys, all kinds of people in all kinds of ways and the next batch is no exception,” Lynd added.

Sharing with Rivet how Ullac is reimagining denim by blurring fashion tastes, Lynd talks incorporating people’s experiences and why the key wardrobe staple is an individual statement for all.

Rivet: What’s new for Fall ’18?

Christopher Lynd: We are not a seasonal brand but we are currently working on our next drop, which should not be too far away. I’m currently finalizing the protos and samples. I have been juggling a million different references and shapes to make a selection of clothes that I’m truly in love with. I think we will probably end up adding them all to the lineup, as I cannot let anyone of them go. It would be like trying to decide which child you like the least, when I love them all equally for different reasons, unlike real parents. We have reimagined some of our original cuts and we have created a bunch of new silhouettes that I’m so excited about.

Rivet: What inspired the upcoming collection?

CL: Our next batch of garments is inspired by a million different things: shapes, album covers, Eminem videos, the Scream films, naughty kids that hung around the Waltzers at U.K. car park fairgrounds in the ’90s, and as ever a bit of Japanese streetwear meets Finnish posture. Some of these influences will be buried deep in the garment and might be very subtle, sometimes obvious. Each of our influences represent a tone, it is that tone that inspire us to create our clothes.

We like to play with familiar and archetypal garments and exaggerate the silhouettes and use unfamiliar fabrics. We are taking that even further in the new batch. But, the biggest influence is always people. I’m fascinated with people and their relationship with clothes. To me, even if it is subconscious, it is a conversation with the universe. When I wake up in the morning, I decide what uniform I need to wrestle the world.

Rivet: What were some of your best-selling pieces and how are you carrying over those successful styles?

CL: Some of our biggest selling lines are the Pattern 001 (straight cut) and Pattern 002 (slim cut). They are a real wardrobe staple and I promise never to mess with the pattern. Our Painter pants and Painter jackets are also a big favorite, lots of people go for the full suit which is very cool, more people buy one or the other though and it’s so nice to see how people wear them. We have some really fun new colorways coming soon. They really change the whole vibe of the suite.

Rivet: What’s trending in the next collection?

CL: For us, it is about more and more interesting shapes. So, lots of aggressive tapers and big wide playful silhouettes and drapes. We are dialing that up in the next batch so we tend to go with a more muted palette in terms of washes and fabrics because we do not want everything to scream too loudly. We’ve got a few little colorful surprises in there too.

Rivet: What are some important denim pieces for the season besides jeans?

CL: We’re working on some really great stuff. One of the pieces that I’m really excited about it our Big Shirt Dress.

“When I wake up in the morning, I decide what uniform I need to wrestle the world.”

Rivet: What’s the status of rigid denim?

CL: We really love rigid denim, so it will always have a place to stay in our house. Especially the Pattern 001 and 002.

Rivet: Are there any looks falling out of fashion?

CL: The super slim jeans and skinny jeans have been around so long that it seems like they have just become a wardrobe stable for so many people. But, I reckon that’s about to change. I do not think we will wake up next week and everyone will be in great big massive jeans (although that would be ace for us) but I think those slim silhouettes are going to get more and more interesting.

Rivet: What’s your overall prediction for the denim market in 2018?

CL: I think it is going to get bigger and bigger, but less headsy and elitist. The denim crowd has always been into knowing where their clothes come from and how they are made, which means that they are way ahead of the curve in terms of ethics. But, I think more and more this is permeating into other markets and becoming important to people which is a really great thing. So, that’s fantastic for all those ace, ethical mills and producers out there. But, I think that it will mean a desire for more accessible denim and maybe less of the straight up heritage stuff that has seemed to dominate the denim head scene for so long.