Hailing from New York City, Acapulco Gold have been a prominent member of the streetwear scene for almost a decade now. Renowned for their bold and playful graphics and their commitment to quality apparel, the brand have always stayed true to what they believe in, despite the comings and goings of the ‘fashion’ world. Because of this they have carved out a path of their own, not concentrating on what other brands are doing, they bring a refreshing take on modern street wear that stems from their relatable and distinctively New York aesthetic.
Acapulco Gold are a lasting feature within our range here at Urban Industry and continue to impress us season after season. With their latest collection dropping in store for Summer 2015, we caught up with the brands founders Geoff and Augie to talk about living in New York City, their past experiences working for Supreme and building Acapulco Gold….
Hey Guys, how are you doing? Could you introduce yourself and tell us a bit about what you do?
GH: Geoff Heath, art director at Acapulco Gold.
AG: Augie Galan, I handle everything on the production side, amongst many other things, and I team up with Geoff on design.
How did you land on the name ‘Acapulco Gold’? What does it represent in the brand?
We were tossing around a few names for a couple of weeks and nothing was catching our ears. As with the birth of most great ideas, one day we were looking through some books on the 70’s weed culture and came across the name Acapulco Gold. It sounded different enough and we liked the feeling of it. To us it gave us the feeling of a gritty paradise, which is the place we inhabit everyday. A Sunny Place for Shady People.
What is a normal day in the Acapulco Gold office like? Do you deal with tasks together or split up the workload?
AG: Geoff spends most of his day on the art side, while I mostly work on getting the products made, sourcing fabrics, and also helping with design. Our brains are constantly fighting the battle between enjoying the creative nature of our pursuit against the realities of running an independent brand.
GH: We each have our generally defined roles and tasks but we always work together on the final image of AG. It always comes from the both of us in the end.
How has being in New York affected the way in which you communicate your brand visually and Acapulco Gold’s aesthetic in general?
GH: New York, in and of itself is a very unique place. It has anything and everything you could want or need at anytime of the day or night. With all of that going on, it becomes a challenge to stand out from the crowd. You have to be better, faster and more confident to make your mark.
AG: I think it’s obvious that New York shines through in a lot of our designs and we take pride in where we live. Growing up here shaped my personality and the way I communicate both visually and aesthetically without a doubt. It’s been a wild ride since I landed here in ’79 from home in Cuba. It can be sort of a cliché but it’s obvious that everything from the music, to the clothes, to the streets is a part of us. NY is like a drug, once you get it in your system it’s hard to get it out. I think that’s why a lot of people move away to places like LA…seems like a sort of rehab for NY’ers. For me though, the rush is still strong enough here that I can’t get away even with all the changes to the city that have occurred in the last 15 years.
You guys both had stints working for Supreme before starting the brand. Do you feel this helped pave the way for you to create something of your own?
Definitely. Supreme was a small family back when we worked there, so we were part of every aspect of the company. It helped develop our skill set and we learned first hand the ins and outs of what it takes to run a company.
For those who may be unfamiliar, how would you describe Acapulco Gold? Who is your target audience?
Acapulco Gold is a menswear brand that stands for quality and style with a New York edge and a sense of humor. We target those who want something well made, well designed, and with no bullshit…individuals who know how to dress and don’t need to be told.
What are your main inspirations?
Our daily inspirations come from the things that influenced us and continue to…skateboarding, bmx, hip-hop, punk, new wave, rock, soul, movies, drinking, girls and life. But the love for clothing and fashion in general is probably the main one. Seeing others wear our designs and having someone tell us they like our shit.
What’s your approach when designing a piece or a collection?
For each new collection, we sit down and throw out ideas of what each of us wants to see in the upcoming season. Everything is put on the table and we see what works and what doesn’t. We decide how we want each piece in the line to progress beyond what has already been done without following trends or copying others out right.
Skateboarding is a huge part of your heritage, how does this reflect in your design?
GH: The thing that drew us to skateboarding was the individualism and that it was an outsider’s sport. It’s the same mentality that is applied to us as people, which translates to what we do.
AG: Skateboarding is a vehicle for everything else. It’s a pursuit but skateboarding here was always more about the activity. The board is a mode of transportation and the attitude is pure NY. We wore Timbs while skating because that was how city kids dressed, not because that was how NY skaters dressed. We separate things here for what they’re worth, at least those of us who are from here. I think skating means something different everywhere you go. It’s only recently I think that it’s entered the mainstream to the point where there is a uniform “skate look”, but NY was always different in that respect.
The brand has come a long way since it started back in 2006. New cut and sew pieces have been added to the collection and in the past few years you have worked on a collabs with the likes of Nike SB. What has been key towards developing your brand?
Everyone and everything progresses in its own way and time. The key for us is sticking to our ideals and not changing for trends or money. When you spend a long time working at something you can hopefully become very good at it. All of that experience and knowledge translates into what makes Acapulco Gold stand out from everyone else.
What can we expect from Acapulco Gold in the future?
Expected and unexpected collaborations with some of our friends, a retail flagship store and space travel. Not necessarily in that order.
You can shop our full Acapulco Gold range HERE
Acapulco Gold Belize
Acapulco Gold Belize
Acapulco Gold Orion