For London-Based Streetwear Brand HERESY, Clothing is Just the Beginning
Words: Chris Danforth
For London-based streetwear brand HERESY, clothing is just the beginning.
Dominic Owen and Jasper Dunk founded HERESY in 2012, in Peckham, London. HERESY represents more than just clothing, and the brand is informed by an eclectic mix of storytelling, music, and community.
While New York City and Tokyo are largely considered the fertile plains of American and Japanese streetwear respectively, London has fostered a subcultural landscape of its own, and one which is highly unique in its own special ways. English-born figures like Supreme’s James Jebbia, Mo’Wax’s James Lavelle, musician and tastemaker Goldie, original Stüssy tribe member Jules Gayton, Gimme 5’s Michael Koppelman, Maharishi’s Hardy Blechman, and Nike’s Fraser Cooke are among the most influential names in music, streetwear, fashion, and sneaker culture. In addition, London and England at large are home to retailers that have helped shape the modern streetwear sphere, not limited to famed London retailer The Hideout, and genre-blending concept retailer Dover Street Market.
More recently, a second wave of homegrown streetwear has helped to further cement London’s stature in the global conversation. Palace Skateboards’ irreverent and tongue-in-cheek designs have swept the globe, while imprints like A-Cold-Wall* and Cottweiler have also become an integral part of the conversation.
Among these next-generation streetwear brands is Peckham-based HERESY, a multifaceted label that supplements its folklore-inspired clothing designs with handmade art objects, events, musical projects and small-batch publications. HERESY was founded by illustrators and schoolmates Dominic Owen and Jasper Dunk. A browse through HERESY’s online shop will reveal characteristic and offbeat apparel, as well as homewares and accessories like tote bags and jewelry. Graphics and illustrations are a core part of the brand’s visual identity, and the aesthetic spectrum of HERESY brings in hand-drawn sketches, airbrushed visuals, and mosaic-like collages of colliding images.
The brand’s blog section chronicles the friends, family, and places that inspire the brand, including articles like “Strange Portraits,” a gallery of street style photographs featuring members of the HERESY community, “Druid’s Temple,” a photo set of a prehistoric stone monument in North Yorkshire, and “Arcadia,” a project of archived clips that explores British people’s shifting relationship with nature.
The “Noise” section of HERESY’s website, on the other hand, features a playlist of miscellaneous sounds, music and audio clips ranging from occult rock to reggae to hip hop. The “HERESY Noise” catalog can also be found on SoundCloud.
Truly, HERESY is much more than just a clothing brand.
When it comes to apparel, HERESY has been operating in an ethically conscious manner since the company was founded in 2012. The brand sees this as a fundamental framework for operating the business in a fair and ethical manner. This practice is underpinned by transparency about where HERESY products come from, and how they are made. The brand also maintains close relationships with its factories in Portugal and Asia.
HERESY’s T-shirt program is a foundational aspect of the brand as well. Rather than opting for ready-made blanks, HERESY’s jersey products are created with a bespoke shape and fit. HERESY summarizes this program by noting, “It took a lot of work and time to develop our t-shirts, but we are now very proud of them and believe that they could give any other shirt a run for their money.”
Owen and Dunk continue to carve out their own space in London and beyond, and their special approach to designing is a reminder that clothing means so much more than just the fabric we wear.
Shop HERESY’s SS22 collection at HHV.
Photos – Daniel Tran