Firstly, thanks for your time. What’s been happening man?
Just got back from a short holiday in Melbourne, a bit of relaxation after a hectic Christmas season.
So what’s up with Butter? Can you tell us who you are, what you do and how Butter came in to fruition?
My name is Garth, I’m the co-owner / founder of Butter Goods. I do all of design work for the company and share a large range of other tasks and responsibilities with my good friend / business partner, Matt “Pidge” Evans.
We started Butter Goods in ’08. We did it because it had been a dream of ours since we were in high school together. We really felt there was a real lack of Australian based companies, and we wanted to try change that.
What prompted you to make the decision to take your ideas and put them on T-Shirts?
We used to mess around back in the day and screen print our own tees. We eventually stopped doing it, but it was still something we both had in the back of our minds. So we wanted to just give it one real shot, like all or nothing. The old, would rather try and fail than never to have tried at all. I just didn’t want to grow old and think, what if.
I think that’s something we’ve learnt the most, and try to push to other people, not to get all preachy, but if you have a dream or a passion, don’t hold back, go for it! The worst thing that can happen is you’ll end up in the same position as you were before before.
There’s a big difference between printing a design on t-shirts and creating an actual “brand”. I think it’s more important to invest time in to what a brand is about, and what it actually represents. You have to give a brand life, without that, it’s just some cool stuff on a t-shirt with no real energy or vibe behind it for people to get down with or relate to.
Butter began in Perth if i’m not misinformed. How do you think Perth and Western Australia has effected and influenced the brand? Both as a concept and aesthetically?
We’re both born and raised here in Perth, so I’m not sure. It’s hard to tell as we don’t know any different. Australia as a whole is a great place to be inspired, it’s isolation is both a positive and negative thing, it just depends how you chose to look at it.
Biggest obstacle you have faced as a brand?
Hmm, there’s plenty. Getting people to give you a shot when you’re small is difficult. The first year particularly. No body knows who you are, and trying to get your product in stores is though. But we just kept plugging away.
Ever been a time when you thought, “Fuck it”? If so, what got you through and kept you pushing on?
Yeah for sure, running a clothing company is hard work! Both of us work full time jobs too. That’s where the partnership works really well. We try to keep each other motivated. We try to make light of and joke around with the boring sides of the business, things are always easier if you laugh about them.
Once upon a time, kids were out there bombing around and taking over the streets and parks on Skateboards, now we seem to be over run by the Scooter/Rip Stick generation. Considering this, what do you see the future holding for skateboarding?
The whole scooter thing is kind of like a cleansing period for skateboarding. Less kids are probably getting into it to begin with. But, the kids that do pick up a board and stick at it, definitely are meant to be there.
Obviously the Skateboarding Industry is booming and doesn’t look like slowing down, but where do you see it heading as a culture?
For as long as we’ve been skateboarding, it’s popularity has fluctuated, and the scene / industry had reflected the times. Skateboarding is one of the few things that through mainstream popularity and decline, at its’ core, has maintained it’s rawness and realness. Plenty of brands try to exploit skateboarding for their benefits without any real ties to it. But it’s blatant, and skateboarders are a picky bunch, bullshit usually gets stamped out and shunned in an instant.
Skateboarding is at our roots, we owe a lot to it, we definitely wouldn’t be doing this is it wasn’t for picking up a board. We’ll be involved in skateboarding through thick or thin. I remember about 8 or so years ago our crew spoke about skateboarding until we were 50 years old, or until it was physically impossible for us to do so any more. Pidge and I are the only people from that day that are still skateboarding, and I’m thankful for that.
Word association, you know the deal, say whatever comes to mind when you read the word.