So today’s ‘Brand Behind the Menswear’ is a company called @hollowsleather. Hollows Leather is a one man brand ran by Nicholas Hollows. Nicholas is a craftsman that keeps his business small and personable for a reason. He personally hand-stiches every inch of his products personally and ensures the finish is to a standard that is good enough for himself personally…only then is the item shipped on to become an heirloom!
We have featured some amazing brands over the past few weeks, all of which are gaining incredible momentum at the minute, all for the right reasons, but here on the 10@10 we think it’s important not to forget guys like Nicholas who create a product every bit as utilitarian/strong and useful but choose to do it on a much smaller scale.
MEET THE BRAND BEHIND THE MENSWEAR
NAME: Nicholas Hollows
POSITION: Owner/All positions
COMPANY: Hollows Leather
LOCATION: Eugene, Oregon, USA
SIZE OF TEAM: 1
SPECIALITY/COMPANY FOCUS: Leather goods
1. Straight forward, please tell us, how did your company Hollows Leather start out?
I happened across an old box of leather tools and scraps by chance. I had a nasty old wallet at the time that was falling apart, so I took a stab at making my own replacement. Things grew from there, I made a few more versions for myself, then for friends, eventually I posted some photos online and folks were interested in buying them.
2. Tell us. What does a day in the life of yourself look like? What’s your daily work routine?
It varies a lot, but generally speaking I spend the early part of my day planning, answering emails, ordering supplies, things like that. Later in the day I try to prep the pieces for the day’s projects so that I can stitch them up in the evening. Hand stitching takes a lot of time, but it’s fairly relaxing for me.
3. What are your top 3 bestselling items? Why do you think this is?
That’s a difficult question to answer, many of my larger items are out of stock frequently, but sell very quickly when they become available. My Westbound Wallets and Crossroads Suspenders are good examples of that. Belts sell reguarly, I suppose because they’re a universal item, and those are almost always in stock.
4. What’s your personal favourite garment when it comes to the items you manufacture?
My personal wallet is one of the Outbound wallets, designed to hold a Field Notes book as well as the usual wallet items. I occasionally test out some of my other designs to ensure that they work well, but I always miss having a notebook on hand, so I always go back to this design.
5. What are your thoughts on the rise of Instagram fashion and the chaps that post their clothing on there to help spread the word of their fave brands?
I’ve seen the rise and fall of a few media platforms now, and I’ve enjoyed Instagram. There’s more sense of open dialogue between my customers and I, which feels good to me. I enjoy following people who are genuinely interested in craftsmanship and quality, but I worry about the rise of sponsored content, monetized feeds, and payola on Instagram though. Usually when that stuff starts, the end isn’t far behind.
6. Has it made an impact on your business at all, do you think?
Yeah, Instagram has been good for me, and I’m very grateful for the network of support that has grown for me there.
7. Is there any feeds on IG that you particularly like to check-in on regular. What brands are you fond of on there? What menswear feeds to you like to peruse?
I’m interested in the history of functional men’s clothing, so I really enjoy @denimbrotherhood, which is a showcase of late 1800s and early 1900s clothing in the Harris Collection. I think that @wanderingsnake has a great archive of historical photos from the Library of Congress and @mister_nar has an amazing collection of old photographs, advertisements, print ephemera and general American historical curio in his feed. My favorite brand is @freewheelers_and_company, a Tokyo-based brand that makes extremely high quality reproduction clothing.
8. A quick one about you. Other than the business, what passions do you have in life? What flicks your switch and helps you relax?
I’m a pretty simple guy, I like reading, playing with my dog, hiking, camping and bicycling. I don’t get to travel as much as I’d like, but I enjoy it when I get the chance.
9. What do you consider to be the best thing about your business and why?
I have a tremendous amount of freedom, and I get to work with my hands to turn my imaginings into real objects, can’t beat that!
10. And Lucky Last, You’re going to be stranded on a desert island and you can take 1 outfit (4 items) only with you. And 1 choice of drink.
What would they be? And Why?
If I’m really stranded on an island, I’d go right back to basics. Carhartt double fronts, Danner boots, a nice wool shirt and a pair of work gloves. Geier makes good ones. Perhaps not too stylish, but I bet they’d help me survive in comfort. To drink I’d take a good green tea. Tasty and comforting, hot or cold.
Tip-top stuff that Nicholas. Thanks for taking the time to talk shop with us and to tell us how you see @hollowsleather and, well, life in general I suppose my friend! Wishing you all the best for the future Nicholas and also a great Christmas and New Year! Hopefully we will speak again soon buddy.
Ok so moving onto Thursday and this weeks’ ‘Man Behind the Menswear’ sees us talk to Ryan Cascarano from the feed @ryancascarano (surprisingly) 😉
Ryan is good at layering, in fact he’s really good at it. He wears loads of blue and sports bad ass boots so this Thursdays’ post is going to be so easy and such a pleasure to put together. Ryan is an intelligent denim and boots enthusiast with that consistent attention to detail that so many of the 10@10 blokes have in abundance. Make sure you drop by as there are a lot worse ways to spend 10 minutes of your day! 😀
Now to quickly mention, we have had a great response to the ‘Project Threads and Fades’ shout out we did last week where we asked for one more guy (the 5th bloke) to come forward. He would be willing to sport a pair of Raws throughout 2017 (starting Jan 1st) provided by the @shockoe_atelier boys and then document their life here on clobbercalm.com. We are giving it one more week so if you’re interested then step forward so we can put your name in the hat! You can reach out on here or via my feed on IG, I’m easy, it’s all good!
Have an interesting week top cats and see you all Thursday OR Friday depending on your time zone 😉
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