a: how long has saturdays been around now?
mc: it will be three years in august.
a: that's sick. so you guys haven't even been around that long really.
mc: not too long. just three years. it's been two years with our own collection, it's been an evolution.
a: you guys have done really well. why do you think that you've had so much success in such a short period of time?
mc: i mean, i think we just had a good idea. mixing surf and fashion. initially we just wanted to open up a surf shop in new york city, and then we all had fashion backgrounds one way or another.
(*morgan started the shop with his friends josh rosen and colin tunstall).
i mean, business wise i think we were just smart. we didn't spend money we didn't have and were really tight with our budget and it was an evolution where we opened a shop and it was a basic surf shop. we sold other people's clothes and other brands and things like that and then we started selling t-shirts. that caught the attention of stores in japan and other stores in the united states, so then we started selling t-shirts at a few different retailers. then that was like six months after we opened, and six months later we had the opportunity to make a clothing collection so we did that. we just kept having these opportunities that were like.. kind of intense and scary, but we just went for it.
a: that's awesome. to have the confidence to take advantage of that.
mc: we came up with the idea and then two weeks later we had the opportunity to take over a retail space in soho. we didn't have time to really think about it, we just went for it.
a: one of my friends that lives in the city took me there last time i was in town. it's super cool. it's rad you can get coffee and cruise around. it's a good vibe in there.
mc: yea it's a really good place to hang and chill.
a: it's not really like any of the other surf shops i've been in. it's... more sophisticated.
mc: well the surf shops in california and in new york... there's a ton of merchandise everywhere, it's pretty packed. we're more focused on design and things like that.
a: so why new york and not out here on the west coast?
mc: well, new york was where we were all living and we just thought... man we need a surf shop... that was pretty much the initial idea.
a: what was there in terms of surf shops before you guys came into the picture?
mc: there was mollusk in brooklyn, in williamsburg off of kent street or something... and then the only other surf shop that was on 86th street and 2nd... uptown, called pipe dreams closed right before we opened. there was nowhere to get equipment.
a: it's weird to me that out of the hundreds of stores in the city... that there wouldn't be anywhere to get that type of thing.
mc: there had been a few places prior to that but nothing had really had sustainability. and that was why, when we kept seeing stores like quicksilver, billabong, and hollister opening... it was like... ok we need to open something that's a little bit more relevant to us and has what we want.
a: i feel like you attract a different crowd to the sport of surfing that might not normally have as much interest.
mc: the cool thing about new york is that there's so many types of people that like doing so many different things, whether it's financing, or fashion, or photography or whatnot, the beach is only 50 minutes away and in summer everyone goes. these people do love surfing, there was just no outlet really for it. so now, being in soho, we're working on opening a space in the west village in june which is going to be really cool, and just kind of gave people a space to hang out at and also talk about surfing, and all the other stuff and it made it more approachable and i think that was really cool.
a: yea that's awesome..
a: what's a piece of advice you would give a 15 year old?
mc: a 15 year old? a 15 year old..... have as much fun as you can. haha. i remember being 15 and it was so much fun. i lived on my bicycle and surfed as much as possible.
a:yea before you have a car it's kind of your last opportunity to really just be a kid.
mc: yea, and i guess it just depends what you're into. i grew up here so all i was into was surfing and skateboarding and that was amazing. we'd ride bikes and surf all morning and we'd go skate or build dirt jumps. it was very playful and explorative. i would definitely say... do that haha.
a: what's your karaoke song. do you sing karaoke?
mc: yea! we opened a store in japan so we've been singing karaoke...
a: that's the hot thing there.
mc: yea. my karaoke song... i'd say bohemian rapsody by queen... it was sweet, we had a company dinner a few weeks ago and we all went to karaoke in the city afterward...it's like this little dive bar in china town with a little karaoke machine and stuff.
a: did you sing it by yourself?
mc: no, no. we all sang. it was so cool. we had so much fun and everyone freaked out and it was really really funny.
a: it's great when you pick a song and the whole room gets really into it.
mc: well that song's slow in the beginning and everyone got into it and then things just got crazy. i have the best videos. we have like.. twenty two people on our staff.
a: my friend ti goes to karaoke religiously every monday and always tries to rally us to go. i keep wanting to get ballsy enough to pick a rap song.
mc: we were in japan and my friend dicekay owns this clothing label hooliwood, we were at this karaoke room and he did a backstreet boys song... it was like... yea that's actually a really good karaoke song haha.
a:it's awesome when people get really into the performance.
a: tell me about your most embarrassing surf story.
mc: yea... i have a good one... i went to puerto rico with an ex-girlfriend and the surf was really big one day. we went to this one spot and i grew up surfing so... i'd like to think i know what i'm doing but... when you go to different places, local knowledge is key. there was this spot and there were four local puertorican guys surfing, and you're supposed to walk out to this point and jump in, but i went straight in, and those guys had just come in and put their stuff on the beach, and my girlfriend was laying out and was sunbathing.. you know topless and i had paddled out.. and basically the current takes you in front of these cliffs.. and it's not smart. i remember trying to paddle out and hearing my girlfriend yelling at me and then i heard these four dudes with my girlfriend. i was like.. fuck haha. i then kind of knew what i'd done wrong so i paddled back in. you just don't want dudes trying to come and talk to your girlfriend when she's topless trying to tell her... hey you need to get your boyfriend out because he's in trouble.. haha. know what i mean? i just didn't really think. it was ok though.
a: how long can you hold your breath under water?
mc: surfing... i mean, in a pool like.. a minute and twenty seconds or something like that? if you do that it's easy, but when you surf if it's big and you get tumbled around and stuff... the guys who surf big waves, they're not really under for that long, its' like 30 seconds, and that wave tumbling you feels like an eternity.
a: i remember getting tossed as a little kid a couple times.. just having the worst experience. just sputtering... nose all full of water... haha. it's terrible.
mc: yea i wish i could hold it for longer. i need to practice.
a: what's something that's happening on the east coast right now that's inspiring to you.
mc: i mean, new york itself is really inspiring, especially when you compare it to southern california. it's just this global city of people from all over the world and i think that's why it's home for me now. even when i come here.. my whole family lives in southern california but new york is my home. it's just this consistently inspiring place. frieze art fair was there, and walking around that was really cool. it's just this huge art fair that travels around the world. just my friends in new york. everyone is really motivated and trying to make things happen... artists, dj's... actors, whatever. that's just been really cool.
a: that's what's cool about new york vs. la though. every time i go there i feel like i get more done in two days than i would in two months here.
mc: that's just the difference between la and new york.. new york is a lot older. you're also forced to interact with everyone in such a condensed amount of space. la everyone is in their cars driving around and you can't really see anyone and if you want to see someone you have to go and visit.. .i've lived in la in silverlake and venice, and downtown for a little bit... hollywood...even to go to all those places is a commitment of time.
a: going to venice from hollywood might as well be like driving here to newport. it takes the same amount of time haha.
mc: yea haha. i mean i like la, it's beautiful, but new york i love because i can leave my apartment and i ride my bike to work every day and all over the city, there's tons of skateparks around, surfing is like... a 50 minute train ride away... it's not like here in newport but if you lived in la its the same amount of time to get to the beach and surf. i don't know. i think new york itself is very inspiring. it's really nice to leave but then you come back and it's like rejuvenation. it's awesome.