Causing Destruction, Creating Disaster
is a clothing brand based out of Rochester, New York that's bringing awareness to many of the disasters facing our world today. We spoke with the founder Stephen about his experience growing up dreaming of people wearing his clothes to now designing his own custom garments and chains while donating a percentage of the proceeds to charities that help make the world a better place. In addition, we also spoke with Stephen about some of his more elaborate pieces, other brands he wants to work with, and his plans to turn his brand into a lifestyle and message that people live by.
Where are you from?
Stephen: I’m from Rochester, New York.
When did you start DISASTRWRLD?
Stephen: I started DISASTRWRLD in March of this year. I was hyping it up for a couple months and finally made my first drop in May.
What’s the inspiration behind the name?
Stephen: I wanted to give people something to wear to share a common belief. That belief is that our world is messed up. At least in the US but in other countries outside as well. A lot of bad things are going on in this world right now. Everybody can tune into my clothes as a way to all feel the same way. Hopefully in the future everyone can see that more because I’m coming out with some cool drops that I can’t speak on yet. I’m gonna be representing disasters and bad things going on all over the world so you’ll see how the name reflects that.
What made you want to start a clothing brand?
Stephen: I really just wanted to be able to walk outside one day and see someone wearing my clothing. It’s always been a dream of mine. I’ve always been into fashion and I was looking for a passion to follow in life. I thought since I liked wearing clothes and looking nice why not make my own so I decided to start a brand. I had an old brand called Antique Worldwide that I started a year and a half ago but I didn’t gain as much traction as I wanted to and wasn't really feeling the idea. It was my first brand and I didn't really know anything so it kind of failed and I took a couple months off after. I decided to tune into something that's more me.
Were you always into fashion growing up?
Stephen: Oh yeah. I always wanted to look good in school and I always got compliments on my outfits. A lot of people in my life including my mother told me to be model but I didn’t want to just wear everyone else's clothes. I wanted my own clothes to get famous.
Let’s talk about your release coming tomorrow. What was the inspiration behind that shirt?
Stephen: I was sitting in my room about a week ago and thought I needed to put something out with all this stuff going on. I don’t have any sensors on my brand since it’s my pure emotions going into the clothes so I was like we need to kill these terrorists. I’m sorry if that’s a hard belief but I base it on the fact that if these people commit mass shootings I have to put them in the same position. So I came up with the quote “Kill Your Local Terrorist” and I talked to my girlfriend and she didn’t really approve of it but my buddies did so I put it on a shirt and people really liked it.
What made you want to donate 25% of the profits to helping stop mass shootings?
Stephen: I came up with the idea from all the mass shootings going on but I didn’t want to be the only one profiting off of a disaster that happened because there’s real people being affected by it. There’s people paying tons of bills, cities spending to stop it and hospitals donating blood so I wanted to give back. I found a local foundation called Dayton Ohio District Tragedy Fund and it seemed like a good foundation to donate to.
What’s the message behind the foundation?
Stephen: The foundation is called the Dayton Ohio Disaster Tragedy Fund and they’re providing shelters and money to help families who have lost loved ones or had them injured in the hospital. They help pay the bills and actively help with family needs and finances so I thought it was really good.
What do you think the average person and our country as a whole can do to raise awareness and help stop these things from happening?
Stephen: You don’t need fully automatic weapons but I believe a shotgun or pistol should be allowed for your protection. I think everyone should become equipped with a pistol when they're old enough because it’s a form of protection, especially in the crazy day and age we live in where anything can happen. The only way we can lower the amount of terrorism is getting these background checks done periodically where you have to renew it every couple years. There are people that have had guns for 20 years now and we don’t know what’s happened to them since then.
What was the inspiration behind your bleach-washed black “Disaster World” tees and hats?
Stephen: When I ordered T-shirts I ordered 30 white and 50 black because I wear black a lot and I know a lot of other people that it a lot as well. When sales started coming in they came in good since people were buying black and white. But then the black T-shirts slowed down for a bit and plateaued so I decided to change them up. I went in my backyard and used this little technique to bleach them and then I did the same thing with the hats. With the white shirts I did custom tie dyes on them in a couple different colors.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
Stephen: A lot of the brands I draw inspiration form are popping brands that you cover right now. I really like Half Evil, they’re super heat. I love Section8 as well. Outsiderz clothing goes crazy too. I have a rhinestone piece coming here soon, I think the samples will be here tomorrow. They’re gonna go hard. Another brand I fuck with is a local brand my buddy runs called Mob Made. He has a studio out in my area and does pictures, beats, and music. He’s a great person with a great clothing brand.
Where did you come up with the idea for the orange distressed hoodie with the spiked hood?
Stephen: I originally made two hoodies with spikes. One of them was unreleased since it was a personal piece. With that one I wanted to make it crazy because I had a customer that liked the spikes but wanted the whole hoodie fucked up. He told me to just do whatever I wanted with it so I distressed it up, bleached it, and put spikes all around the hood. I also replaced the drawstring with a chain to add another little touch. I got a little inspiration from Section8 with the spikes and I wanted to twist it up with a totally customized piece.
Have you done cut and sew work?
Stephen: I’ve done a little bit. I mainly go through my manufacturer for my cut and sew needs and I have a local screen printer who does my screen printing.
Do you plan on doing more cut and sew pieces in the future?
Stephenn: Yeah I want to. I want to start off with basic essentials to gain some traction and brand loyalty. I want my fanbase to be where I can do these one off cut and sew pieces and they’ll sell. I want to be as diverse as I can with my clothes.
Are there any other garments, mediums or accessories you want to experiment with in the future?
Stephen: I made these chains that are really cool. They’re pendants that I made at my local job. I cut them out myself on the laser and polished them up personally and drilled the holes to assemble them into a chain. They’re available on the site right now. It’s super high quality stainless steel. I want to continue doing more jewelry since I really love making it. I got inspiration from Hard Jewelry which is another brand I really like. William is going crazy and same with Dylan from WWY. I get inspired by both of them, those are my boys.
Are there any other brands or designers you want to work with?
Stephenn: Everybody I’ve named I want to work with at some point. I’m trying to do a collab with Eternal. I’m calling out Demetrio right now since he needs to hit me back. Tell him to answer and let’s get this collab going. Shoutout to him and Eternal though. I also want to work with Parker from Absent, I love that brand as well.
What should we expect to see from DISASTRWRLD next?
Stephen: I’m gonna do more of these donation type drops where I'm gonna take a disaster or something crazy that's happening in the world and make a piece about it. In the future I’m gonna make a full collection on that and still donate 25-50% of the profits. I’ll do a full on charity eventually. I still want to follow a solid drop schedule. We’re working our way up there but you can expect a lot more in the future. We’re gonna be dropping the rhinestone designs soon and I have some DISASTRWRLD V2 hoodies coming as well. With the first drop I made those hoodies in black and orange so we have V2’s of those coming in different colors.
What do you want DISASTRWRLD to become?
Stephen: I want it to be like Supreme in that it’s a lifestyle brand. I want it to be more than just clothing. I want it to have a cult fanbase, and a whole sense of friendship within the community. I want it to be a lifestyle that people live by. They’ll feel the energy, the vibes, and the message and they’ll live by it.
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