Monday, 25 February 2013

The LYF interview

I have recently made a fantastic discovery, ASOS Market Place. I know, your all thinking it’s hardly the best kept secret. But for a long time I have never ventured past ASOS itself, by the time I have trawled through their other brands (which we all know can take a while) I’m too exhausted to look.
But what a gem I have been missing. There are some fantastic one off pieces, usually vintage, which are all really affordable.

Click the image to go to there website
The LYF is a Canadian Boutique which can be found on ASOS Market Place. They have a very distinctive look, one which I adore. They tend to stock a more 90’s trend. I was lucky enough to get a chat with the two co-owners Kristina Derrick & Keith Miller.
When did your interests in fashion start?
Keith - I guess I didn't know I was interested in fashion until I started hanging out with Kristina. I went through some awful fashion phases growing up; tacky shirts from Randy River, awful ill-fitting corduroy pants, went through the 'hard-core kid' phase when I was in my later teens, way too tight jeans, hard-core band tees and I even had my eyebrow pierced, my god. But once Kristina started taking me shopping it turns out I can actually wear what I like and feel comfortable in the best look for me, rather than trying to fit in to some sort of stupid mould.
Kristina - when I was 3. Probably when I started dancing, I got to put together my own outfits it was really cool. I actually don't even remember my mom dressing me, maybe once in grade 3 or 4. It was school picture day and she didn't want me to wear a headband, but I did so I hid it in my backpack and took it to school with me. When the pictures came back she flipped it was hilarious. Honestly, I can't remember a time when I wasn't interested in style. I say style not fashion on purpose. Style and clothes; those are my interests.

What made you want to start THE LYF?  
Keith - it actually wasn't completely intentional. Kristina had made herself a rad bleached denim ombre shirt and when she posted photos of it everyone was saying they wanted one and asked if they could buy one!
Kristina - it was bound to happen at some point, it felt like fate that brought The Lyf to me & you. It felt so natural and so obvious right from the very beginning. When we first realized what we could put together we didn't have to question whether or not we would do it.
When we created The Lyf it was born out of the desire to get people to be excited and think freely about the way they are able to dress themselves. Look at it from a fresh perspective.
Why did you call the business THE LYF?
Kristina - I was given a nickname at a bar, exponential, and it stuck with me over time and carried over into artistic projects. We'd thought about calling it The Life Exponential, but wanted to shorten it and still have the same spirit so we decided on simply The Lyf.
Keith - and using the y makes it cooler obviously.
When you first set up the business, what did you expect/plan for its future?
Kristina - nothing. I just wanted people to buy tee shirts from us.
Keith - I think that the reason that it has gotten to this point and we're enjoying our successes it's because we didn't expect anything. We went into it completely genuinely.
Kristina - with lots of love. It evolved naturally, here it is and it's great :) it makes sense.
If you could describe THE LYF's style in 3 words, what would they be?
Keith - dope, classy, colourful.
Kristina - far too dope.

In a paragraph describe the style and tone of THE LYF, and what it stands for?
The Lyf stands for freedom. Freedom from convention. It's about wearing clothes you love, not what you think you 'should' be wearing. It offers a fresh perspective on vintage clothing. Instead of just getting rid of your clothing (which to me is very very difficult), why don't you want to keep them forever? Why do people move on so quickly from what's in their closet instead of just being happy with everything they have. We're not talking classics either, we're talking about things that you like that expresses your personality. Things can be cute and fun even though they're not from a store on the high street. It's like we rescue our pieces from fashion hell, and hopefully (cross our fingers) give them a good home where they will be respected, as they should be.

Individually, how would you describe your style?
Keith - I don't know. I guess I don't think about it anymore, because everything I have I like now. I like graphic prints, I like all over patterns, vintage prints. I like knits a lot. My favourite colour to wear is forest green.
Kristina - Completely minimal. Sometimes I verge on looking like I completely don't care. Other times I don't feel like I'm representing hard enough. I'm like a canvas without the paint. It's more exciting because nothing is final.
What lies ahead for THE LYF? And your personal fashion career?
Kristina - I can't even think about a week from now. We're launching a pop up shop in our hometown for a few days in July, we're launching a brand new collection on The Pokey Hat, and a whole new collection on ASOS Marketplace too.
Keith - We're doing a vintage market in our hometown in March also, it's always cool to actually bring a physical collection out, having such a regular online presence.
Kristina - our fashion future is that we're going to just keep doing The Lyf.
Keith - wherever that takes us.

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