Moscow brand NAMELESS is a new stage in the development of the Russian techwear market. The brand uses high quality materials and renowned European accessories, remaining “without a name”.
The founder of the brand Gleb told us about the brand’s philosophy, production difficulties and his future plans.
Tell me more about you
During the first year of my college, I bought a graphics tablet. I began to elaborate tattoo sketches by decorating music albums. The graphical environment attracted me. I’ve been doing this for about 10 years. I was about to enter the Design University in the Czech Republic. I submitted all the documentation and set an appointment at the consulate, in Moscow (I am from Ufa). When I arrived in Moscow, the meeting was postponed for a week. At the same time I came to know about the T-shirts production process.
Three years before, I just went crazy on how interesting was the production process. I loved it! All these turntables, mixing paints, erode.
For a while I worked in production, but realized that just stitching monotonous clothes is not for me. I started to freelance again and dealt with graphic design.
But graphic design is totally different. Fantasy never restricts you. If you create a cool website, someone builds it; If you make a painting it needs to be printed; while creating clothing is not the same thing. When you draw a sketch, you go to the designer and after that, on that evening, she calls you and says, “Come back, we need to discuss.” You go and discuss a new element with the designer at least 4 hours.
Probably, everything started from the sketches. It is an eternal research of yourself. When I drew, I did not do tattoos. I did only sketches and saw these people making tattoos after my sketches. Kind of cool, but there is no such a feeling like giving birth to a son. For some reason with the jackets, with tangible products, there is physical contact. In this process you put really more effort and you have to constantly evolve.
“You have to be a conscious person. Consciously say no and make conscious choices”
Do what you want exactly. Once you understand it, you can really do what you want, do what makes you happy. Because there is no human nature, all we are a product of the society. Today you hang out with Spartak fans and yourself are a fan of Spartak and you hate CSKA. Then you meet the CSKA fans and see that they are just normal guys. It turns out that in this situation you were dependent on these, and now depends also on those. You get lost; you feel like a monkey in a joke. You cannot be a monkey; you have to be a conscious person. Consciously say no and make conscious choices.
How did you come to the idea of creating the brand?
Three years ago, the idea of establishing my own brand was just to start. I began to print T-shirts with my own prints. My friends liked them, and the first batch of T-shirts sold within week. At the same time I had some moments of crisis: for a month, I was sightless and understood what I really want from this life.
Then I called our graphic designer Vladimir and said I wanted to do techwear. I already developed the first anorak and even bought a horrible Korean membrane. But I needed an audience. From here came the idea to create the blog TECHUNTER. We were the first to translate and publish interviews of techwear brands creators. For example, we published an interview with Errolson Hugh from ACRONYM. So we began to flow into this environment. Through our blog, we have to study techwear and understood the market.
So, we are now about one year old. Audience was with us in November, we started to properly sew in January.
During this time, we formed a small team. All these people I trust and whose work I appreciate.
I always listen to my designer’s opinion, Svetlana. I am an architect and she is my engineer. I invented a building but I do not know how to build it. The engineer knows better. Svetlana and I discuss my ideas and invent future models.
The first things that we have developed together were fleece jacket and pants. At the beginning of the work there was misunderstanding, but when the thing has already been sewn, she began to understand what I wanted. She is professional. She does not just make patterns, but also produces a small sample, a kind of sketch. I really like this approach and I see that her interest to this work is growing.
Then I show the patterns to our technologist Marya. It’s just a golden woman. She is an experienced seamstress and just a sewing ”warhamer”. She is also incredibly interested to this work. We parse patterns, all docked and she starts to work. In the process of sewing the technologist can say that there are extra items and sometimes should be changed. This means that she does not work without thinking, she is interested to do this item. She is not just a robot that sews a model but the continuation Svetlana’s work (designer). It means, Svetlana is the hand of my thoughts; Marya is the continuation of Svetlana’s hands. It’s a human centipede. It’s a process. And as long as we hold our hands, it will keep working.
All my jackets were before sewed by one person, now there are two. One sews the other seals. For an untrained person, the seal may be a complex process that can damage the expensive membrane. For example, I am the one who applies the buttons. We use very high quality and expensive materials and accessories, so the production process is complicated.
“This is the work of my life and it is very personal”
For the first time I am enjoying it. I love the whole process. Few people know that I’m doing jackets. This is the work of my life and it is very personal. Of course, there are many difficulties, but I perceive them easily. I have nowhere to retreat.
What can you say about the techwear market?
Tech wearing is just emerging on our market. When the market is full of clothes that are not tech, the buyer gets the impression that techwear can be cheap. This is not true. Unfortunately, it turns out that the buyer is not learning or the manufacturer is not trying to buy high-quality fabric. It’s very expensive. As long as on the ”techwear”market there will be 1,000 rubles clothes, the buyer will think that Nameless is very expensive even if we are cheaper than foreign analogues.
“Techwear buyers are smart shoppers and they are growing and developing. They are not necessarily urban or tech fans”
The Russian market is not ready for such things. Perhaps, the metropolitan market is, but certainly not the regions. We do quite niche products. I think we will come to understand the technological clothes, but it will take some time.
On the other hand, the market creates a new niche. Techwear buyers are smart shoppers and they are growing and developing. They are not necessarily urban or tech fans. For example, the brand Garbstore, which is specialized in the Heritage category, is making great coats with Schoeller membrane. It means, you can be all dressed in Heritage and still have a jacket from technological material. But, unfortunately, everyone thinks that techwear needs to be done with plenty of pockets and a Sub-Zero mask.
Yes, ACRONYM is an archetype of techwear. Now it is hard to imagine techwear without this brand, in fact everyone should have something from it.
Arc’Teryx Veliance is more classic. Many do not understand why they have to pay 70 thousands for a coat with no pockets on the outside, just all of them inside. Here you pay for the use of high technology in the production: without thread seams, glued and with ultrasonic soldering. I understand it. Now I basically do not buy clothes, I wear samples and I like it.
Are you focused on entering the international market?
Our first jacket for pre-order went to Los Angeles. Then Italy: we sent our anorak and guys were very pleased. We went on an international level almost immediately, because of being honest and people are interested in our products. It should be understood that the average price for techwear in Europe is 1000 euros.
“We went on an international level almost immediately, because of being honest and people are interested in our products”
Our price is more than two times lower. For us it will be a profit and for Europe, reasonable prices. Also, we can proudly say that these clothes are made in Russia. Now our task is to learn how to create our product by using their material. Then it will be a different story.
How would you describe your buyer?
These are the people starting from 25 years of age who do not ask money to their Mum to buy a t-shirt. These people should have already established their view of the world, they know who they are and what they want to do. These people are somehow associated with creativity.
“I like that we have a small circulation, as we get closer to the customer”
Such a person must be a geek, or he simply wouldn’t understand the whole point of such a thing. He will appreciate it, he will be glad he did not get wet, but he won’t share this fact. This is not enough. People must experience real emotion and tell one each other: “You know there are 4 guys in Moscow, carrying fabrics from France, Switzerland and running around Moscow with machines for buttons! This is so cool! “And it is quite a different argument.
Nameless / The Second Line
The thing must not create the impression that you bought something useful or something that increases your status. Your good actions in front of others improve your status.
I would like to see adults among the target audience. Not in terms of having money, but in terms of being conscious. Our stuff will last them a lifetime. He will get a jacket, will be satisfied and I will be very happy, too. I will continue to win the heart of other buyers.
It must be a open-minded person. If this is a businessman, he is not the one who earns money on everything he can, but he is still interested in paintings for example and he may not be dealing with arts, not in this case. He just needs something else to be interested. Such people are always missing, not money, but food for their minds. And here he will find it. In a conversation with me, he will find it. In a conversation with Vladimir – a graphic designer, he will find it. Again, this will create an emotion.
“The thing must not create the impression that you bought something useful or something that increases your status. Your good actions in front of others improve your status”
I have customers with whom I meet in town, we sit and drink coffee, we talk. I like that we have a small circulation, as we get closer to the customer. I do not want to be a mass-market, I want to talk with customers, listen to their views. Any brand, any product should not end with production. There should be a way out of the scope of the product.
I do not see any reason to fuss over clothes. I would not want people to shake over my clothes. If you want to go to Kamchatka with our jacket, you can go. If you want to step up through crowds of people in the subway – go ahead. Do not be afraid of hooks. Soon, we will work with the theme of membrane reparation, so that you can safely move through the city, and we could provide you high quality clothing recovery after wearing it.
By next fall, we hope to make all new membranes. We want to make sweatshirts with a high quality Italian cotton.
There is an idea to make patches with USB, such a hacker topic. A designer from Prague developed the patch itself. We had a small international collaboration. The flash drive will contain our magazine, videos, and personal appeal to those who pre-ordered.
We focus on quality now. We openly say that we want to make the products for at least 5 years. Yes, we do the 2.0 version of our anorak, but it does not mean that the first one was worse. It was just different.
“We openly say that we make products for at least 5 years”
We have agreed with ArkAir to purchase and use their fabrics, they will also develop a camouflage for us. There was a question about how to use it same as the collaboration with William Jarrett (chief designer at ArkAir) or simply as the use of the Arktis Ltd material production.
Soon a new quality website will be made. So stay tuned.
Why did you choose the name Nameless?
We have thought for a long time about a name until getting crazy. We decided that it is better to remain nameless. Suddenly Volodya (designer) said: «Nameless» – Nameless. Name is one of the first things that we learn at school and we are used to it. Nameless – it also ends easily and graphically looks clear and sounds great.
Then there was the story of the logo. I am a fan of Aitor Throup, but we did not make the logo, using his design. Just once I heard the music and saw the album cover – a swimmer who falls down and groups. We took it as a basis, but turned him so that he towered. The result was a man in space, people in the architectural space, hovering like an exclamation mark. Man is an urban accent.
Our vision is not the purchase of a brand name, but its products, its quality. We use eminent materials, but we remain without a name.