Stag & Fist is a London-based clothing brand founded by Bristolian Josh Jefferies. Having long been a devotee of Mixed Martial Arts, Josh was uninspired by the apparel supplied to supposedly fit with the sport and set out to redefine the clothing aesthetic. Stag & Fist aims to provide sustainably-sourced clothing not just for the gym, but for the day-to-day as well. S&F designs are simple but appealing, produced in factories using renewable energy including solar power. This is truly a unique idea and Gleem were excited to speak to Josh to find out more about his ambitions for 2015…
1) Can you give me a brief history of ‘Stag and Fist’?
‘Stag & Fist’ started in the gym. I train in mixed martial arts, one of the fastest growing sports in modern culture. It is a beautiful sport that combines highly intelligent strategy with multiple combat sports. The fashion side of MMA is dominated by America, but I wanted to combine my love for the sport with true British style. Bringing in a mixture of clean designs with a Savile Row-like tailored fit. MMA is often perceived as a very brutal and thuggish sport and has long had the label of ‘cage fighting’, although the sport of fighting has been in British culture since the 1800s. This is where my inspiration comes from, I like to take influences from 19th century bareknuckle boxing mixed with modern day culture and style, and to avoid the thuggish label from the sport we operate as a 100% ethical and Fairtrade company, using 100% organic cotton in all our t-shirts.
2) What is the importance of sustainable clothing to you personally?
Sustainable clothing is massively important to me. I believe non-sustainable business to be immensely archaic and quite lazy. Its like hummus. It drives me nuts to walk into a shop and see a pot of Hummus for a pound, but right next to it see the ‘healthy’ ‘less salt, less fat, less rubbish’ option for the exact same price, or about ten pence more expensive… Why make the other version at all? Just sell the ‘healthy’ hummus and everyone would be better off… Why not have the same mentality with clothing? Because of profit? Well there’s the thuggish nature of the world, not the sport so many people seem to have such a negative view on. Yes it costs me more to source my clothes, but I know that every single person involved in our t-shirts are getting fair pay and justice for how much work they have put in.
3) Do you see sustainable clothing as a growing market, especially considering its recent appearances in the public eye e.g. at the 2015 Oscars?
It is a growing market, but it still has a long way to go. You would be surprised at how difficult it has been for me to source the right materials and fabricators, it didn’t happen at a quick click of a button, it took months and months of meticulous research. Yet, I must say our generation is thinking more green in every aspect of their lifestyle. We have just helped open a new gym in London and have seen a surge in people thinking more about their fitness, their nutrition and their general well being and outlook on life. This leads to people becoming more educated and wanting to make a difference with all their purchases, from food to clothes.
4) What plans have you got in the pipeline for 2015?
2015 is a very exciting year for us. As I mentioned above we have just helped open a new fitness studio in central London, which focuses on group classes and 1 on 1 lifestyle coaching, focusing on fitness, nutrition, and inner wellbeing. We have also just signed a professional mix martial arts athlete who will be fighting for a championship flyweight belt live on Channel 4 with the UK based Cage Warriors organisation. We will be taking part in a charity fashion show on April 18th in London, where all our profits will be going to the Tommy Vine Fund, a charity set up to help youngsters get into the Arts. We will be soon launching our brand new Summer collection and we are also about to launch our very own short film! Our company motto is ‘Always Believe’ and this is exactly how we approach everyday and how we will take on 2015.
Thanks so much Josh – Stag & Fist are evidently going from strength to strength! We’re happy to see a local clearly taking the Big Smoke by storm, especially as Gleem are expanding to the capital. If you would like to check out their apparel, go to http://www.stagandfist.com/lookbook.