Calm Clothing NYC
Maor Rosilio of Calm Clothing NYC contacted us a few months back wondering if we would be interested in receiving and reviewing some samples from his brand. Here at Rusted Revolution, we are ALWAYS game for featuring designers and artists, especially ones who make product as sick as Maor. Read on for our interview with the man behind the name and check out how we rocked these specialty pieces the RR way.
Building my own brand has been a dream of mine for years, but Calm only started taking shape about a year ago. While I was attending college I searched and applied to a ton of menswear internships to “learn the ropes” of this industry, but after coming up empty for about 2 years I decided that I wasted enough time. I was ready to just give it a try on my own. Thankfully, it’s been working out pretty well.
Where do you get inspiration for your designs? Being located in New York probably plays a significant role in the overall vibe of the brand; if so, please elaborate.
Despite being born and raised in New York, I like to think that I get my inspiration from a number of different places. Each of my designs are inspired by specific things, I try not to generalize my work. I get a great deal of my inspirations from old design books that I have acquired throughout my life so far, but I’ve just as easily been inspired from a product that I use every day. As for my choice in fabrics, I just feel like I’m on the constant hunt both online and in New York’s abundance of fabric stores looking for the next fabric to indisputably excite me.
What do you love about New York? If you only had one day in NYC, where would you go/what would you do?
New York City is one of those cities that almost always has something exciting going on. It’s hard to be bored in this city, even if you don’t take full advantage of all that it has to offer. I like to try and find shops in Lower Manhattan that curate a wide selection of unique products. Since I have been living in New York my whole life, I would just roam the streets aimlessly until I see something that I haven’t noticed before. I also like to explore New York City nightlife to find clubs that play music I haven’t heard before.
Explain the graphic design and garment construction process. How long does it usually take? Is anything handmade?
I’m constantly designing graphics and finding new materials to use so that when it comes time to put together a line, I can focus more on just narrowing it down to what looks best and fits well together. After those decisions are made, it takes anywhere between 2 weeks to 2 months to produce a certain run of garments. Because everything is hand made in New York, we spend less time communicating with the factories to make an item perfect, but a little more time waiting for the item to be produced, as opposed to the exact opposite when producing overseas.
Describe the Calm Clothing NYC customer in three words.
Efficient, Logical and of course Calm.
We LOVE that Calm Clothing NYC is a unisex line – did you always intend for the brand to be non-gender specific?
Initially I intended Calm to be a menswear brand, but while shooting the first look book I asked a female friend of mine to model a few outfits and the looks translated well. I certainly didn’t expect my brand to be this popular amongst women, but I am glad it is.
How many minds are behind the Calm Clothing NYC team? Who brings what to the table?
There are two minds behind Calm Clothing. My business partner, Bradley Meersand, has a background in marketing and advertising. I discuss my designs with Bradley and then we sit and perfect each one. Having always been interested in fashion, we have both developed a very unique personal style and when combined we get a very well rounded and versatile product.
We really dig your blog; how does the content relate to and support your brand image? Do you read any other blogs?
I like to think of my blog as a way for me to express my personal taste in music. It isn’t necessarily connected to my clothing, but definitely connected to the overall message that I am trying to convey. I honestly try to read every single blog I encounter, I might be a little too hungry for information.
Your blog definitely shows an interest in house music and we approve! Name some favorite artists.
I’ve recently been listening to a lot of disco influenced house music. My current favorites in that genre are The Phantom’s Revenge, Riva Starr, and Armand Van Helden.
Where do you see your business in the next few years?
I consider myself to be somewhat of a superstitious person. I don’t go by the standard “black cat” superstitions; I tend to follow my own rules. This question is one that I try not to answer because the response would be broad but obvious. However, I will say that in a few years I would like my business to still be around.
Any advice for budding artists/designers?
“Keep Calm, and Carry On.”
By their very nature, t-shirts and windbreakers are casual garments, meant to be worn with jeans and sneakers. But if anyone knows me, I’d choose dresses and heels over any thing else, so naturally I was inclined to style my Calm Clothing NYC items in an atypical way. Calm Clothing’s graphic tees have unique, quirky designs, but are also so comfortable AND versatile. Same goes for the Calm windbreaker shirts. These windshirts are something I never really envisioned myself wearing until I was given one, but once I put one on, I could instantly think of a thousand things I’d wear it with. The brown ostrich leather patches on the chest and elbows keep the shirt fresh and modern and allow for more liberal styling choices, but the material is sturdy, lightweight yet warm, and practical. And my favorite part about Calm Clothing? Strangely enough, it’s the double logo on the backs of the shirts — reminds me of eyes.
As Lesley explained, Maor’s clothing is understatedly simple with a noteworthy edge – think unexpected prints, designs and textures superimposed over a backdrop of a singular color or material. The garments are very well constructed and quite comfortable….I immediately gravitated towards the cotton tees! At first glance, the designs seem obvious and uncomplicated, but when after considering the existing constrasts between the color, material, and tone of each piece, I was better able to appreciate Maor’s craftsmanship and design.
As I consider my own style to be rather quirky and almost “boyish,” I was easily able to style the two tees and windbreaker pullover with items from my closet. Lesley and I are HUGE fans of pattern, so I went for a full-on tribal get-up in Look #1.
(I’m wearing the Calm Clothing NYC Brown Aztec V-Neck, a DIY turban, DIY Free People sweatshirt slashed at the sleeves, thrifted harem pants, Free People hiker heels and Free People friendship bracelets).
This beige windbreaker made Look #2 easy as pie (plus the fact that I kept on the same pants); the luxe chainlink pattern on the pocket and elbow patches practically screamed prep. I gave the outfit a slightly French and romantic edge with a neck scarf, leopard booties, and mega messy bun.
Oddly enough, Look #3 was my biggest challenge, simply because this tee was so….well….simple! However, being that I’m a graphic tee fiend, I went with the fool-proof blazer-over-tee move. I kept it fresh by adding a different texture (velvet) with a little grunge (Doc Martens). And I am loving the ‘America’ trend which has still been going strong since summer!
All in all, Calm Clothing NYC gets the Rusted Revolution stamp of approval; not only are these pieces funky and different, but they appeal to a wide variety of styles. Definitely visit the brand’s site here to check out an awesome selection of unisex styles at totally affordable prices (tons of items are 50% off right now!) and a sick blog. Also, be sure to ‘Like’ the Calm Clothing NYC Facebook page here for blog and product updates.
Also, we would like to extend a HUGE thank you to Maor for sending us these samples and allowing us to feature him on our site. Now that we’ve got Calm Clothing on our sartorial radar, we’ll be eyeing the brand as it edges it’s way beyond the confines of NYC and into the global fashion world.
Lucy & Lesley