Here’s the latest from streetwear label and Vogue Talents pick Proudrace: A pre-collection of deconstructed ‘fits, an apt representation of “creation out of chaos.”
Last year, we checked in with Proudrace creative director Rik Rasos and got inspired by his optimism despite it all. He also gave us a hint for what he was working on back then, and now it’s here.
For 2021, Proudrace “goes back to its roots of reworking, reconstructing deadstock garments and fabrics.” You’ll see in this collection their signature break-the-rules approach and a sustainable mindset. It’s called ecofuturist. I hit “Add to Dictionary” on that word when I did my spell check, and so should you.
The collection also serves as an introduction for Proudrace Artisanal (one-off pieces made of recycled garments and prototypes), Proudrace Factory Sample (classic silhouettes that are available constantly), and Proudrace Main Line (seasonal and experimental collections).
The kicker? The lookbook for this pre-collection features Rik as the model, a take on a trope found in your dating apps. Here’s what he has to say about that:
Let’s talk about this re-birth of the brand. When and where did you get the idea for it?
Since the quarantine started, I’ve been operating the brand as a one-man team and working remotely with my production team in the safety of their own homes. I’ve realized so many things about myself and my capabilities as a creative. My emotions are also off the hook during this time, so I had to manage that.
I’ve always wanted to go back to Proudrace’s roots that are experimental and fearless. I figured with this climate; there’s no reason to fear what we want. And we should make it happen.
What have you been reading and watching that helped in creating this vision?
Listening more than reading, actually. I’ve been listening to a lot of SZA, Alex TBH, and Brockhampton; really solid emotional stuff. I’ve been watching a lot Hell’s Kitchen. I don’t know if, unconsciously, the intensity in that show pressured me to reimagine the brand. I’ve been watching documentaries about serial killers also. It’s interesting to understand what goes on in their minds and how introverted but narcissistic everyone is. It’s definitely a mixed bag of different visuals.
You said the lookbook is like a Grindr profile. What’s the reasoning behind that?
Not just Grindr but different dating apps and how there’s always a mirror selfie as a profile photo. That’s a staple in almost every dating app. Also, it’s about that counter culture of taking nudes using a mirror selfie and how that’s so narcissistic and brave at the same time. So the lookbook is very tongue in cheek. It’s all mirror selfies of me and wearing the collection mixed with my everyday clothes in the studio—a day to day mundane activity that I have been doing since we started the lockdown.
Surprisingly, it’s very therapeutic and liberating. It just gave me that confidence to be out there, to stop hiding, and to actually represent my brand more because I’m proud of what I do. The bravest thing I’ve done is to connect myself with the brand. I’ve always thrived with anonymity, and I really have stage fright because I am extremely shy.
2020 made me realize that there’s no reason to be afraid. What’s the worst thing that could happen? That not everyone will like what you are putting out? That’s on them. As long as you’re proud and happy with what you are releasing to the universe, then that’s all that matters.
So since this is like being on a dating app, what’s a profile description that makes you hurl?
“No fats. No femmes. No Asians.”
Photo with a pet cat or dog. Swipe left or swipe right?
Let’s stop with the small talk and get married.
Worst pick up line?
I don’t know about the worst. But I do have the best: “Sayang mga mata mo. Kasi walang pagtingin sa akin” (That’s a waste of eyes because you don’t have sight for me.)
Message to those who say “masc for masc”?
“Masc for masc ka because?” (That Kris Aquino meme. )
Best first date outfit?
A white t-shirt and nice fitting jeans. Or if you wear Proudrace.
The worst thing to hear on a first date?
“This government is the best!”
If you could go out on a date with anyone in the world, who would it be?