Reason Clothing

At a time when streetwear was relatively fresh on the block, REASON teamed up with some of today’s leading streetwear brands throwing parties and sample sales at Boundless NYC. From the start, REASON has been a mainstay in streetwear receiving well-deserved love from some of the top blogs and magazines in the industry. A strong color palette and twists-on-classic cuts were the main highlights of the 13-piece Fall 08 collection. REASON gives us their reasoning on why they’re here to stay.

“REASON is about what we call ‘inspiration from aspiration’. The idea behind our line is really to connect with people’s goals.”

Format: Please state who you are and your role at REASON.
Philip Bassis: Philip Bassis. Designer. Co-owner.

Format: Give a little history on your brand.
Philip Bassis: In the summer of ’04, Jon and I decided to set forth and start a clothing label. We were fresh out of high school, hungry as hell, and ready to change the world. We printed some shirts at FIT. We read some books. We asked our friends at the local stores if they’d sell our tees. And that’s how REASON began.

The next year we teamed up with Mishka, Mighty Healthy, King Stampede, and 10Deep (all then relatively unknown companies), started throwing weekly parties and hosting occasional sample sales together at the newly leased Boundless store. (pretty unknown at that point too) emailed us and featured us on their site. Complex magazine featured us in five back-to-back issues. We took our first run on the trade show circuit. Chuck Anderson designed a t-shirt for us. Released the ‘Monster Plaid’ hoodie. Started getting a lot more press. Designed a t-shirt for TheHundreds. Started getting a lot more website hits. Celebrities started popping up wearing our stuff. Read a lot of books. Started developing a full cut and sew line. Got an office space. Worked days, nights, holidays, and weekends for almost two years, releasing tons of awesome clothes.

Format: Who are your key players and what are their roles?
Philip Bassis: Jon and myself are the principal owners. We also have a team of dedicated freelancers and interns who help out along the way. From python caps and plaid to politics and

Format: How did you come up with your brand name?
Philip Bassis: REASON is about what we call ‘inspiration from aspiration’. The idea behind our line is really to connect with people’s goals. Whatever you do in your life that gives you that indescribable thrill of victory is your REASON.

Format: What is your take on current political movement in the U.S.? How will this affect you as a young business owner?
Philip Bassis: We’re all really psyched about the recent election. The stories I’ve been reading about how Obama’s election has inspired people is exactly what we are all about.

Format: You recently released the Python New Eras. Have you received any animal activist complaints?
Philip Bassis: Hah. No. At first people were a little bit apprehensive about that cap especially since REASON tends to lean more towards a more subtle and relaxed look but it is a really amazing piece that actually compliments a clean outfit really well.

Format: Please explain to us the process in creating this Python cap.
Philip Bassis: We had the idea for this cap last year. We met with Yolanda and Chi-Kay at New Era last February to come up with a plan that would let us utilize the full capabilities of New Era’s factories and get some suggestions from them. The hardest part was cleaning up the python image properly and finding the right fabrics to bring the design to life. The satin outer and black satin lining came out perfectly. The snake skin under-brim was a given, and the glow in the dark detailing just makes this one of the coolest hats of all time.

Format: Plaid is back and strong. It’s popped up in almost every street wear line out there. What makes your plaids better than anyone else’s?
Philip Bassis: We’ve been doing variations on plaid patterns since day one. One of our first designs was the halftone dot plaid, which created a plaid pattern out of varying sized halftone dots. Our most memorable plaid treatment is definitely the monster plaid pattern. To this day we still get people asking about where to find the monster plaid hoodies. Plaid is a part of the REASON identity that people have come to know and look forward to our future variations on.

Format: Who designed the reindeer graphic? Please describe the process behind this design.
Philip Bassis: I did the reindeer graphic. I wanted to do something that was reminiscent of an old sweater that tied in with our fall Wonderland theme. Sketched it. Vectorized it. Mocked it up. Boom. Buy one.

Format: How has the brand evolved since its inception?
Philip Bassis: Our offering has evolved tenfold from every angle. Our message and idea has stayed the same but become more clear and concise while our range has expanded into a full look. Creating pieces here and there is one thing but merchandising a full collection so that a customer can put together a full look, head to toe, and look great is a real task. A lot of lines nowadays are slacking on that front.

Format: What does the future hold for Reason?
Philip Bassis: Our focus on quality is at an all time high. Every single piece that we make is developed for upwards of eight months. We go through a relentless sampling and quality control process. From the moment goods hit our warehouse we spend countless hours going through every item, individually inspecting them, hand numbering them, and packaging them for sale. We firmly stand by our commitment to every piece of clothing that we make. That’s what has brought us this far and that’s what we’re staying true to.

I guess now is as good a time as ever to announce that we will be opening our first store, Reason Cooper Square, on Tuesday November 25th at 12 noon. Check our site for more info on the launch!

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Jules C

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