I got the chance to catch up with Tyler, founder of Timeless Thrills clothing which was founded in 2011. Timeless Thrills is a lifestyle brand providing high-end streetwear at an exclusive availability. If you’re not familiar with them yet, you’ll become quite the fan after this interview. Check it out below!
Company Name: Timeless Thrills
Date Founded: November of 2011
Located out of: Sacramento, CA
Number of Employees: 0
Specialty Products: Graphic tees, fleece, shirts, headwear, accessories, cut & sew, etc.
Interviewee: Tyler W.
Position with the Company: Founder/Owner
So tell us a little on the company’s background? How did it get started?
Timeless Thrills started simply as a passion for something I always wanted to do. Clothing, style, and fashion have always been an intriguing interest of mine. How this company got started is more about my interest in clothing than the beginning of Timeless Thrills.
I was a baseball player my entire life and was fortunate enough to receive a scholarship to play at an NCAA school in New Mexico on a scholarship. After college, I didn’t make it to the pros, but baseball did accompany my way through business school where I earned my bachelor’s degree. When I came back to Sacramento out of college, finding work was tough, even with a degree. My goal was to work and put money away until I had a solid enough foundation to start entertaining the idea of my own clothing brand. For about a year and a half I worked every sales/business job imaginable. From selling insurance to pro football tickets, I had to get by! Finally the time came when I had some start up money and a concept, I was ready, and Timeless Thrills was born.
Was Timeless Thrills your introduction into fashion or had you done work with other brands before?
Timeless Thrills was indeed my introduction into fashion. I hadn’t worked with or for any other brands before the start of Timeless Thrills. My personal background, experience, and credentials all landed in the business category but with no specifics in fashion. The journey that has ensued since the start of the brand has absolutely been my lesson in fashion. In my opinion, trial and error is a far more useful way to learn than in a classroom.
What about the name? What is the significance or story behind it?
Timeless Thrills can directly translate into “Good times forever,” although it represents much more than just that. My goal for the brand was to come up with something that was catchy and provoked thought and questions. I also wanted a logo that was a true representation of the lifestyle of the brand we were trying to create. From the start, I knew I wanted a “lifestyle brand,” so coming up with a concept for our customers to live by was the key.
You don’t ever want to arrive at the end of the day and realize you didn’t get everything done that you needed to, all because time ran out. ”Staying Timeless” is your fight against the clock and the idea that you will never let time slow you down; time will never be used as an excuse! Our logo helps embody that same concept. While it can be seen as two “T’s,” it also represents an empty hourglass. What is more timeless than an empty hourglass? Between our name, concept, and logo I feel like we’ve set the groundwork for a lifestyle brand we see people identifying with. In fact they tell us that. We don’t want our customers to simply wear our clothing, we want them to live through our clothing.
In what region do you do most of your business?
We do most of our business in Northern California, Sacramento, I run our entire inventory set out of an extra bedroom in our house. Then I work on a daily basis out of a small office in midtown Sacramento. Most of our product is made here in the USA, but more importantly, all our screen-printing, embroidery, tagging, labeling, attention to detail work, and additions are all done here in Sacramento. It’s one part of Timeless Thrills I am very proud of. To be able to assemble clothes in the actual city I was born and raised is special for me. I think it gives a much more personal feel to each and every piece. It’s not just one of a thousand pieces mass-produced overseas. I feel that is key when it comes to the inherent value of the clothing.
How many stores are you currently in?
Only one. We sell our clothes in our online shop of course, but also in Getta Clue Store in downtown Sacramento. Getta Clue is a staple in the streetwear/fashion industry. They have been in business over twenty years now and still run the game when it comes to TRUE streetwear stores. I would consider them the top streetwear store in California. They paid their dues. I have had a relationship with the owners for many years now. I used to take the bus after school in 7th and 8th grade down to the mall and we’d buy all kinds of things from Getta Clue. It was the true mecca of Sacramento streetwear. Once I started Timeless Thrills, I came to the owners and asked them if I could consign the product in the store. They agreed and carried our very first line (Spring 12′ – The Stay Timeless Collection). It ended up selling really well. Since then, we’ve continued putting our newest releases into the store and they continue to sell very well and receive positive feedback. I will always have Getta Clue to thank for giving me that chance in the beginning. Our clothes being sold in that store is HUGE for the overall look of our brand.
While it may sound crazy, we haven’t made a strong push into other retail stores yet. It’s because our goal is keeping our clothing limited and exclusive. So, in turn, my main goal is to get the city of Sacramento behind us, become a mainstay of where I live and then expand. I feel that is a necessity before we ever try and move forward in retail. If your own city doesn’t have your back, who will? That is another reason being in Getta Clue has been so huge for us. It allows us to connect with the true streetwear heads of the city. Once I feel our following and support in Sacramento has reached a certain level, we will then start making a strong retail push. We’ve actually turned down several stores throughout Northern California for this exact reason.
What advice do you have for college students who are looking to branch into fashion?
DO YOUR HOMEWORK! The number one piece of advice I give to anyone who comes to me is to have patience. This is one industry you cannot just jump into. That is one of the main mistakes I made when I first started. I jumped into this thing full force without knowing enough about all aspects of the clothing/fashion industry. Yes, I did my homework before we started up, but certainly not enough. There are so many things you need to know about design, forecasting trends, the art of screen printing, quantities, color segments, materials, fabrics, and much more. My main advice would be, take your time and truly master what it is you want to do before you even start!
I will tell you one thing, throwing myself into this thing prematurely was a mistake, but it has forced me to learn fast. Over this last year and a half of running this business, I have learned more than any college could have ever taught me. I have made countless mistakes and have experienced the true meaning of trial and error. I had no choice. You see so many brands who pop up and months later they’re nowhere to be found. I wasn’t going to allow this to happen to us. So I had to apply myself and learn, and I continue to learn every day.
One thing you need to understand is, you will never truly “get it.” There is always room to improve. If you ever think you finally “got it,” you’ll find out later you were dead wrong. That is what I am trying to do with the brand. Continued progression and letting it grow at it’s own pace. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
What was one of the highlights in your fashion career?
The biggest highlight for me is simply seeing my ideas, concepts, designs, etc. come to life, and then actually worn and enjoyed by other people. I mean, it is still really hard to grasp that concept. People are actually purchasing and wearing items that I dreamed up. It is truly a humbling experience and I will forever be thankful to our customers, supporters, and fans. Without them, there is no Timeless Thrills.
Any one famous rocking your products?
To be perfectly honest, I’m not worried about famous people wearing our clothes at this point. I feel the clothes will speak for themselves. I don’t want people buying Timeless Thrills because they saw a famous person wearing one of our shirts. I want them to buy it because they legitimately like that shirt. Don’t get me wrong, if say, Mac Miller or Wiz Khalifa wanted a shirt, I’d probably send him 10 but it’s such a small segment of our audience. We have to maintain our principles.
We have some people close to the brand that are in the limelight such as Jon Rabon a.k.a. JON BOOGIE who dances for Justin Bieber, and then CFL Football star Jay Barnes (brother of Matt Barnes). But as far as famous people wearing the brand, not so much, at least to this point. I’m not so much into giving out free clothes either. I feel like eventually our brand will continue to progress and move forward to the point where we’ll be respected enough in the industry where celebrities, stars, athletes, etc. will genuinely WANT to wear our clothes. I put too much damn time, money, and hard work to simply give a ton of clothes away, whether you’re famous or not. We are a company and a business, not a charity.
How do you hope to differentiate your brand from other urban brands?
Personally, I wouldn’t ever label us as an urban brand. Yes, we may draw the eyes of a consensus of people in that culture, but as far as being an “urban brand,” that’s just not us. I “label” Timeless Thrills as; “A lifestyle brand providing high-end streetwear at an exclusive availability.” Nothing more and nothing less. That gives a strong representation of who we are in one short sentence.
How we will differentiate from other brands is staying true to our limited and exclusive quantities. Every brand wants their clothes & product to be exclusive, right? But once they start to grow and move into retail, that exclusiveness goes out the window. Oversaturating an already overflowing industry with tons and tons of quantity already takes away from the true quality and value of that product. Keeping it exclusive not only ads more value to the product, it helps give the customer that “lifestyle” feel. As we continue to grow as a brand and business, I will always make sure our quantities are lower than most brands. Our clothing will always be limited and exclusive, and that is one thing you will always be able to count on from us. No one likes walking into a club or a party and seeing five other people wearing the same shirt as you! When you purchase our clothing, you can feel confident and comfortable knowing there’s only a handful of other people out there with that same good taste.
Another factor in keeping everything exclusive is not reprinting or re-manufacturing any of our products. That is a promise I have made to our customers from day one and have yet to stray from it. We simply do not reprint or re-manufacture ANY of our products. Once they sell out, they are gone forever; No matter how well or “not well” something does. In the end, this could set us back a bit, but I’d rather stay true to customers and myself.
How does your line fit into the sneakerhead movement?
We are very much involved with the sneakerhead movement because in general I think streetwear and sneakers go hand in hand. The people buying the new sneakers are the same people buying the newest streetwear. So you have to appeal to both facets, depending on where you sit. sneakers actually help make up a very integral part in our design efforts. We’re always keeping up on release dates of the newest Jordans or Nikes that are going to make the most noise. We try and incorporate those color schemes into our clothing. Think about it; if someone walks into a true streetwear store selling sneakers to buy the newest pair of Jordans, then on the way out they see a fresh shirt that matches that pair of Jordans, nine times out of ten they’re probably going to purchase it. I would and do. It’s all about finding that middle ground where the two cultures co-exist, and then hammering down on it. I myself have been a true sneakerhead since I can remember. Collecting Jordans and Nikes has always been a passion of mine since I was in middle school.
Do you consider Timeless Thrills as a streetwear brand?
Yes. I consider us a streetwear brand because of the target market we are pushing our product towards. While we easily mesh with the skateboarding, hip-hop, sneaker, and sports culture, I feel the one similarity those cultures all fall under is streetwear. That’s why you don’t hear me branding Timeless Thrills as a skate brand or a brand of it’s own. I feel like we hit several different new and exciting areas. With that being said, the overall concept of the brand becomes even more than “streetwear.” It is to truly create a lifestyle brand. That is our number one goal. Once Timeless Thrills becomes a lifestyle of its own, who knows what kind of category or culture you can place us in? The possibilities could be endless.
What do you think your hottest designs are for this season? Why?
Well as of now, we are on the brink of releasing our Spring 13’ line which is titled; “The Timeless Savages” Collection. You can expect graphic tees, fleece, headwear, socks, and accessories in this line. Look out for a middle to late February release.
Outside of seasonal, you can expect some collaboration capsule collections, some limited release items, and a small introduction into cut & sew; this is what I am most excited about this year. You can expect some cut & sew products from us in our Fall 13’ line. I personally feel a transition into cut & sew in only our second year is something to be proud of.
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