Working with Skumbag has been on the books since Whiskey Knits was a tiny pile of yarn in my attic apartment. For this interview, I caught up with Taylor Best, one of the Owner-Operators of Skumbag Company.
Note: some answers have been edited for length and clarity
When did Skumbag get started?
"Skumbag started 2016, our first release was Friday the 13th of last January. Shit, crazy to think that Alex Vincini, Marcus Chavez, and I have been creating and hustling Skumbag over a year now. Originally I had this idea of a clothing brand based around the word “scumbag”.Other than that I really had no idea where how to take if from idea to reality. After sitting on it, time passing, and being surrounded by so many Everett Artist of all trades, I said fuck it, why not try! [Alex] was a local freelance artist here in Everett and after observing the art he had been producing and noticing how much we had a similar taste in art, I asked Alex if he liked the idea. Needless to say he was interested and wanted to be involved more than just being the hired gun to create designs. Later that night we decided on the name “Skumbag Company”
"We had a name, but what now? [We] went to grab tacos and throughout a good time sharing drink we started drawing designs on cocktail napkins. Marcus came into the picture soon after; Alex and Marcus had done a variety of portrait photography projects in the past, so who better fit to bring on board than an already talented photographer? We have spent a lot of time really molding Skumbag to what [it] is today. There is so much trial and error, but shit only progress! We are very thankful everything has worked out the way it has over the past year."
Skumbag advertises a lot of marijuana in their branding and products. How do you feel this has influenced the way you make clothing?
"Cannabis is a part of my life; [I’m] working for two cannabis centric jobs right now. [The] benefits I take from the plant- long story short I’m just a stoner! Skumbag’s creations come from the people we are and our perspectives on life. One of our first caps we created was a hand holding a joint, with smoke spelling 'Match Me.' You either know what this term means or you don’t."
"We wanted to create a cap for all the stoners, something that would resonate well with a specific demographic.
[Not] everyone is a skumbag!"
What does the process of making a piece of garment look like right now?
"We’re really fortunate how everything has fit like a lock and key with our production of products, since day one really. Conveniently we know friends who work as screen printers- we started there- and it’s been a success so far. After we create a design, we send the files off to Aimless Goods our Printer and they screen print or DTG (direct to garment)."
"Hoodies, that was a new process for us, we wanted to put designs on the sleeves for the Winter Line products. Aimless Goods had no issue with DTG for the sleeves. The hoodie is a cozy warm 100% cotton, fleece lined hoodie, from Independent Trading Co."
What’s your favorite piece of clothing in the winter line?
"My personal favorite is the Rip Long SLeeve Tee, I have always loved our coffins and tombstone designs the most. The Tombstone w/ Skum lettering is a large design on [the] left chest, and I love that its abnormally large for a left chest [print]. We switched up designs and put coffins all up down the sleeves! People say “I’ll sleep when I die;” we live that shit! Life doesn't stop, and your endeavors will fail if you stop. We created something and we can’t stop now!"
What’s next for you skumbags?
"Whats next? More, I want more! We want to continue to create more products that we want to wear! Working with more creatives and brands is what we enjoy, more collaborations is what's next honestly. This community has given and driven us to no end!"
"We started Skumbag and Whiskey Knits around the same time in this city. Working side by side with other artist in the Everett community only births more seeds of opportunity for all of us! Working with Whiskey Knits is great, something we had talked about for a long time. I would say this is a great push for both of our companies, and that's just a prime example of the creativity that is exploding in Everett; it's a fucking revolution! Skumbag has a coming collaboration with PussyWeed, all the way on the East Coast! We’re really stoked to release this collaboration of products, we have been brainstorming and creating, get ready skumbags!"