Dr. Seuss once wrote: “What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more?”
Christmas is absolutely my favourite time of the year, a time to be thankful for receiving, and most importantly; a time for giving. During this very special time, we here at Fox are proud to announce that our Designer, Andy, has been working on an independent design and streetwear brand called Futuro.
Based in Barcelona and inspired by travel and collaborating with creatives globally, Futuro is also a social initiative with an objective to pass on a cut of the earnings to international NGOs and those with a greater need.
I had the opportunity to ask Andy, who has recently returned from working with the Mumbai Smiles team in India, a couple of questions about how he started such an inspiring project, which combines both design, travel and gives back to the community.
GL: Can you tell us a little bit about your background?
AF: I worked as a designer since 2003 and have somehow managed to keep the career going whilst backpacking and then moving around quite a lot. I got lucky and found work for a big agency in New Zealand when I arrived in 2008 which basically inspired me to keep going. And now that the remote working thing is really taking off, it’s great to collaborate with people all over the world every day, which has also made this Futuro idea become realistic.
GL: At what point did the idea for Futuro come about and what made you pursue it?
AF: From my first backpacking trips to Southeast Asia and meeting lots of local folks, it became obvious to me that coming from a wealthier part of the world (even South Yorkshire) meant that I’d had way more opportunities than many of the people I was getting to meet.
So in May 2014 I started working on this idea as a fun way to combine the two things I really love — travel and design — to set up a business that has already made a small contribution, thanks enormously to others who have recently gotten involved in fact (like you guys and a few other pals and family members).
GL: Where did the name Futuro come from?
AF: It’s the Spanish word for future — so the idea being that we can hopefully contribute in some small way, and perhaps one or two others can become their own bosses and do whatever they want with their own futures.
GL: Can you tell us about some of your most inspiring travels?
AF: Most inspiring? Always Asia. Such a cliché but I’ve met so many super generous people over here which is always what I remember the most from the trip (i.e. the people). And also the fact that it’s changing so much all the time; Bangkok is unrecognisable to me since I was first here in 2005 for example. Mumbai is amazing too, everything is maximum level (volume, colours, flavours etc.).
GL: What are some of the biggest challenges starting your own fashion brand?
AF: It’s been a total learning process from day one, frustrating at times, I’ve spent tons of money on various T-shirt prints, some of the earlier iterations were not so good in terms of print quality, the T-shirt itself and some of the early designs were a bit overly complicated. And in fact building a brand from nothing continues to be way more challenging than I’d expected.
GL: Anything you know now you wish you had known when you started your brand?
AF: The best thing I’ve done is to start telling others about what I’m doing (again like you folks). People have reacted in a very positive way (which has actually really surprised me), this has given me a huge push and has been enormously inspiring.