Interviews

Published on December 11th, 2019 | by Clayton Durant

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David Kollar On Building A Streetwear Empire

David Kollar has one of the hottest brands in fashion. From a side hustle t-shirt designer to a multi-million dollar brand, Kollar Clothing has established itself as a global streetwear empire on the rise that is worn by some of the most recognized celebrities, athletes, and musicians around the world. How did David move the brand from a passion project to a multimillion-dollar business? All you have to do is go back back to his early years in Canada where at the age of 16 he started his own t-shirt line, styling friends and becoming an aesthetic influencer among his peers. Fast forward to today and Kollar Clothing has earned its place as one of the most exciting rising brands in streetwear with a style that is exciting for consumers and fashion industry insiders alike.

In an exclusive interview with The Hype Magazine, I sat down with David to discuss the evolution of Kollar Clothing, why he and the brand are interested in doing more capsule collections, and why the brand is focusing on making a big footprint in the United States in 2020.

 

Your brand Kollar Clothing has been growing at an incredible pace. Can you take our readers back and walk us through how you got the brand started? 

I first started the brand when I was about 16 years old with a t-shirt line in high school and was also re-selling popular Nike dunks and streetwear clothing that were hard to find to make a profit. I was born in Slovakia so when I got to Canada my mom always told me to work hard at what you want, and that was my mentality since day one. My mom actually was a seamstress and sewed in the basement so that she can take care of us while working as she was a single mom. Watching her sew somehow I got inspired and got into fashion as I grew older. The reason I started my brand is that there were things I wanted to wear that did not exist, so I think of this as art and where I can have a creative outlet, this is the reason why I started the brand. I saved up my money from doing odd jobs and went to a tradeshow in Las Vegas called Liberty Fairs where I opened up 10 new retailers that would eventually carry my brand in their store. Once I got more popular I opened up my online shop and focused a lot on organically growing with the right stores and targeting the right customers who want to be bold and detailed in there clothing. This is how Kollar Clothing began.

Your brand has been dominating in Canada. Can you give us a sneak peek into what some of your 2020 goals are for the brand?

One of the goals for 2020 is to start dropping a new collection on a monthly basis. Which we have planned for January 2020, I think my best work to this date will be coming out in 2020, as I focused a lot on my design now that I have other people assisting me with the business side and my team is bigger I can really focus on the creative part. We will also be building a new website where its easier to shop and make it easy to navigate and really see how the product should fit based on how we build the website and how we shoot the images. Were also going to be more targeted on our denim and creating a core line, as a brand were constantly sold out, so our goal is to ensure our Core line is always available, as we use the softest and the perfect stretch fabrics so that men can be comfortable while still looking good!

Tariffs and other geopolitical challenges have hit fashion brands hard this year. What has your brand done to weather the storm of the trade wars? 

Great question, this is a bit tough something out of our control, the best we can do is try not to increase the prices too much so that customers feel that were charging fair prices and were not trying to rip anyone off. We work very tightly with our factories to ensure quality and prices are fair so that wed not have to make any harsh changes in our price points because of Tariff’s fees.

You mentioned your interest in developing more capsule collections in the future. Can you break down why fashion as a whole seems to be more capsule driven than ever before?

I don’t want to promote fast fashion as it is killing the environment, so our goal is to make exclusive capsules with limited quantities and classic pieces that can last a lifetime. I also feel people get bored very easily, and now with Instagram, once you shoot yourself in a certain outfit, most people don’t want to be shot in the same outfit again on their Instagram page, so they want something new, so instead of customers getting bored and seeing the same stuff on our website, were constantly dropping new products on a monthly basis where they can really enjoy the brand on a monthly basis vs a seasonal basis. We also create limitations of how many pieces and units per style so this keeps the brand fresh, and exclusive.

Do you have any interesting capsule collections or collaborations in the works?

We can’t reveal any collaborations yet, but we are talking to different celebrities about interesting partnerships. We are also making an effort to fly to different countries to shoot with models and amazing locations, for the ones that already follow the brand our look book and visuals are so important to us, just as much as the clothing. We are trying to tell a story from the clothing to the visuals of the brand.

If artists want to reach out to your brand, can you break down for the managers and artists reading this how they could successfully convince you to do a capsule collection or collaboration with them?

I think the best way to really get someone to be interested in doing a collaboration, is to approach the brand with relevant information, where they can actually figure out why and how this is beneficial to the brand. Once you hit them with that, they can know if the collaboration makes sense, at the end of the day it needs to make sense for both parties. There’s a reason behind everything, and if they can reveal the reason and keep it real with the brand, the collaboration will be much more successful.

If anyone does want to work with us feel free to hit us up [email protected]

For the entrepreneurs who want to start a company like you, do you have any advice you can offer them? 

The best advice I can give someone is to make sure you are passionate about what you are getting into. For fashion, it takes at least 4-6 Years to really get your name out there if your starting from scratch, I believe whatever you dedicated long hours to, you will get better at it. So, you just have to be persistence, and patient and have a relentless grind. No should never be an answer to you, I started the brand with $500 and no connections, and I built out my brand to be a multi-million dollar brand sold in over 200+ retailers. If I can do it, anyone else can, you just gotta make sure your willing to grind and be patient, I feel everyone wants it right away and unfortunately building a company takes time just like working out, you won’t see results, but when you do you’ll just get more motivated and stronger, this is the same thing for business. Also Fashion is a very cashflow intensive business, when you drop a collection and make your profit you have to use that money right back into your next collection, so you won’t be paying yourself for a while. If anyone else wants more tips I also have a consulting business www.kollarconsult.com, where I can assist and help new business in the fashion world.

 



About the Author

Clayton Durant is the founder and CEO of CAD Management, an entertainment consulting company that focuses on event, tour, and strategic management for indie artists and brands. Email him at [email protected] to connect.


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