The first annual Launch LA breezed it's way through sunny Santa Monica's Barker Hanger last week and just like the So Cal event's core consumer base, the tradeshow was a laid back and cool affair. Newer independent companies along with veterans in the skate & surf industry turned out to showcase their brands and take part in what we believe is a growing market. Many were broadening there scope beyond "action" sport related apparel and accessories while embracing "lifestyle" with focus on leisure and aesthetic versus performance and function. Cultivated had a chance to meet some of the dedicated people trying to be the next brand on everyone's lips, t-shirt and favorite pair of shorts. Some highlights below...
PROOF - An Idaho-based label offering both wood and cellulose eyewear with a eyeglass case so cool we forgot to photograph it.
Urban Xplorer - a new company out of Sacramento with a line of vintage-inspired, moderately-priced bags
B:SCOTT - Designer Brandon Scott and his growing California line.
FEIYUE - They make men's and women's shoes, but these kids sneakers were too adorable not to photograph.
SOLUDOS - the popular espradille brand showcased their line
WELLEN - the surf lifestyle brand had a huge booth.
Topo Designs - the Colorado-based line of USA-made outdoor gear had a popular booth. Quality stuff.
&WORK - A workwear brand that adds a little twist to their pieces, melding classic looks with the modern age.
Launch has the makings of an ongoing destination for emerging, inventive, and stylish West Coast brands and we wish them much success.