Blood-cousins Alex Hollender and Tyler Ben-Amotz–along with designer Jesse Zorski–are the founding partners of Create Build Destroy, a brand that has received tons of buzz for their v-neck tees with vintage textile pockets. The brand name represents the â€œlifecycleâ€ of an idea. Hollender is all too familiar with the negative association to the latter part of his brand name and rebutts, â€œPeople tend to think negative thoughts when they hear the word destroy, as if it has to be a violent or malicious act, but we simply see it as a necessary process in the natural progression of ideas.â€
â€œWithin the foundation and framework of any idea lie the seeds of its destruction. In order for an evolution of ideas to occur one must be able to destroy the previous codes and laws they are built upon and create something new.â€
Format: Please state who you are and your role at Create Build Destroy.
Tyler Ben-Amotz: I am Tyler Ben-Amotz. I founded Create Build Destroy back in December of 2006 (then it was just Create) and joined forces with Alex in Feb. 2007. I design the clothing, along with Jesse Zorski, who started designing for us in the Summer 08 Collection.
Format: You two are cousins. Does family ever get in the way of business? How do your family ties make you stronger?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: In addition to being cousins we are also best friends, and going into Create we both knew that friendship and business should not mix. Our friendship is the most important thing to both of us. We try to separate the business from everything else, and if it did interfere with our relationship we would be inclined to stop Create (instead of having a bad relationship with each other).
Format: You are quoted as saying: â€œWithin the foundation and framework of any idea, lie the seeds of destruction. In order for an evolution of ideas to occur one must be able to destroy the previous codes and laws they built upon on and create something new. Our name basically speaks for itself, and represents the entire life-cycle of an idea, and additionally speaks to the idea that without destruction, or a decomposition of old ideas, there is no opportunity for new things to arise.â€ How do you maintain consistency with your brand if you are constantly destroying past ideas?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: The consistency lies in our creative drive and our eagerness to tap into new, original ideas. If our brand consistency was all based around one theme or style, there wouldn’t be any room for new, creative thought. There are themes that loosely inspire us – I get a lot of my inspiration from the music I listen to, and artists I like (photographers, in particular) but other than the inspiration, there aren’t other factors that string together how everything is going to look.
Format: What new ideas and concepts has CBD brought to the world of fashion?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: One area that I think we’ve contributed to is the style of raw, unrefined art being put onto garments. I always take into consideration the canvas that my work will be shown on – in most cases it’s a t-shirt. Whether it’s the pocket tee or a graphic design, we don’t just throw images onto a shirt the same way they would be on a canvas. The placement and organization on the shirt is almost as important as the design itself.
Format: Your brand began in 2007 as “Create Clothing.” Why did you change the name of the company to “Create Build Destroy”? How has the company evolved since its inception?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: Create was the original name, which easily evolved into Create Clothing (so that people knew what we were selling). But as we became more legitimate, we realized that we wouldn’t be able to trademark that name, and we wanted a name that was not so open ended and told the buyers more about the company. Create Build Destroy came with an entire philosophy and got us our niche in the market.
Format: You’re a brand out of Vermont and Tribeca. How does the streetwear scene differ from the other communities, cities, and states?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: Although Tribeca is in New York, it’s really a smaller community feel and I think that has influenced the company and made it stand out from brands in other states and even other brands in New York. Our photoshoots, parties, and other events all take place in TriBeCa (and some shoots in VT) and we attract the type of people that live here and want to be around here.
Format: How many pieces are in your Fall 2008 Collection?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: The Fall ’08 Collection consists of three pieces: a v-neck t-shirt, regular t-shirt, and a crewneck sweatshirt. This was a mini-drop, but the Winter ’08 is a full line.
Format: What was the Fall Mini Drop 08? Will you be coming out with more pieces?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: Since our Summer ’08 line was the first line of ours that most stores picked up, we wanted to give them something to put on the shelves in fall before our larger winter line dropped. Since we are still a small company, it’s hard to do full lines four times a year, but we’ll aim for a full winter and spring/summer line each year, and at least a mini-drop if not a larger release for fall.
Format: Your V-neck pocket tee features a cute patchwork pocket. Where did you source your fabrics for the pockets?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: The pockets were all hand picked vintage fabric, some that we had but most was bought at stores. The pockets were assembled along with the shirt in a factory in NJ.
Format: What does the future hold for Create Build Destroy?
Tyler Ben-Amotz: Everything under the sun. We’re looking to keep putting out more creative products, which means printing on garments that are not usually used, and finding more creative ways to design things like jeans and jackets.
More Info: http://www.createbuilddestroy.com/