Q&A with Rich.London

We caught up with Rich Evans for our latest Q&A, the man behind the brilliant Rich.London agency. Rich has over 10 years of experience within the fashion industry and I enjoyed the fresh and honest answers he gave in the chat below. Enjoy…

Morning Rich, how are you today?

Hey, I’m good, a bit stressed but that’s normal, keeps me going. Loads on. I’m finishing up a campaign I’ve been working on for KAPPA and the client’s chasing me. Full of hate towards Putin but packing up spare samples we have here to send to Ukraine later. A few of my staff’s computers are playing up and I know I’m going to have to try and fix them. Finishing some pitches for a few other jobs that I have to present next week and looking forward to the weekend.

Your background within menswear and media is vast, but can you give us a quick summary?

I’ve always had a very chaotic but creative personality, I get bored easily and love to push whatever I do to breaking point. This meant nights out could last for days, I’d try pretty much anything, travel everywhere and I would push trends as far as I could to create new looks and get noticed. With this came popularity and also negativity. I would have as many friends as enemies. Often getting into fights and trouble with the law. With this, I was developing unique 1st hand experiences and knowledge of all things youth culture related, new and old.

With no qualifications in fashion or media, I quickly realised the mix of my ‘life experience’, confidence, and genuine day to day love for fashion was unique enough to get my foot in the door making tea in the fashion section of a magazine led to me starting as an intern on Lads mags. From there I showed 110% non-stop enthusiasm. I went in early, stayed late, helped out wherever I could and if I had an idea, I would let them know. I also networked like mad, not intentionally but I made sure I was out every night in a cool place. This approach helped me climb the ladder of the magazine world, eventually working on all of the lad’s magazines for a crazy 10 years. Until I was made Fashion Director of FHM and Associate or contributing Editor of many more magazines and newspapers. I kept the same consistent proactive approach paying attention to my punctuality, personality and personal style and soon I also became a personal stylist to many bands and famous faces at the time. As my career progressed, my reputation for ’styling’ and directing shoots within the realm of youth culture meant that brands started to approach me to style their advertising campaigns…That’s where I still am today…

You now have your own agency – Rich London – talk us through it?

The agency started as a PR agency. I was so busy editing magazines and styling famous people that I was giving lots of brands free ‘PR’. I set up the company in tangent with my freelance work and began guaranteeing brands exposure each month through my network of friends, clients and colleagues. This was great but after a while, I wanted more involvement in the brands so I also began producing their lookbooks and campaigns. This meant the brands became ‘cooler’ and made the work my PR team had to do, so much easier. Today we support and direct all aspects of the brands we represent on a global level from social media management, events, collaborations to PR and Creative.

What brands are you representing at the moment?

Currently, we represent SPERRY footwear, FUBU, SCUM Skateboards, Sean John, Karl Kani and Schott NYC. Alongside this, I’m developing global campaigns for KAPPA and we have several special projects on the go for other brands that are a bit hush-hush.

What makes you different from the rest?

I think we have become probably the most ‘authentic’ agency without really trying. In a world where brands want to connect with authentic ‘urban’ and ‘youth culture’ new and old, that’s all I know so it’s just all fallen into place organically.

A lot of PR or Creative agencies are run by really clever often posh people that have the business, corporate side locked but they outsource the ‘cultured ’ or ‘creative’ people that keep the agency relevant. I’m the opposite to that, we can do the ‘cool’ stuff with our eyes closed but we have had to work really hard to learn the corporate side. Now we have both on point so it’s a great stage for the agency.

What other passions do you have outside of work?

I have always been self-employed or freelance so it’s important I shut off when outside work and have a good work-life balance. I literally like everything and get obsessed with things at random points. I’ve always loved boxing, I’ve had a few fights and train regularly in the gym alongside running 2-3 times a week. I’ve always loved cars, new and old, I currently have a 1973 Vauxhall Fe which is my 2nd wife. I spend as much time with my family as possible. My amazing wife keeps me from going bankrupt or going to jail and my 2 boys are my best mates! I travel as much as possible to keep myself experiencing new things.

What brand would you love to have on your books?

I’ve worked with a lot of my favorite brands but pound for pound STUSSY has always been my favourite brand and I’m yet to do anything with them. My goal is to buy a brand and have 100% control of its growth.

I hear on the grapevine you’re a keen skater – what do you like most about the scene?

From the age of about 11, I’ve always skated, not so much these days but I go with my kids, which is cool. Everything about skateboarding is great, there are no real rules or limits. You can be creative and be yourself. Skateboarders all have a ‘can do’ attitude which I think really helps in everyday life and no one ever complains about anything. Music and fashion are at the heart of it and there is always a welcoming community feel to any park in the world.

Music plays a big part in what we are about here at Casual Cultures – what are you listening to at the moment?

I’ve got the new Chase and status track featuring back road Gee ‘When It Rains’ on repeat atm. It’s the first time I’ve ever heard a mix of grime, drum and bass and hip hop. Generally, anything aggressive or fast or likely to make my ears ring or give me a little buzz from punk, jungle, rave, rap, grime, house, garage trap, drill to techno.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get involved in the industry you are in?

My advice would be to be yourself. Set yourself goals and stick to what you enjoy. If you really love football then you’ll be great in a football magazine and if you love trainers then write about trainers. But, before you take the plunge into a career, travel, get as much 1st hand experience of your personal passion as you can. Whatever it is from lots of different perspectives. The more knee-deep you go the more knowledge you’ll have over everyone else wanting to do the same. Visit sneaker stores all over the world, play football on the beach with locals in Brazil, sleep on the same beach, live with the locals, immerse yourself in your passion.

Best and worst things about running your own agency?

I did work in Homebase with a name badge and a uniform when I was 16 but running your own thing, you can be yourself. No one to answer to or tell you what to do. This is cool but it doesn’t mean you can slack off. There are 1000’s of agencies out there all fighting for the same work. The minute you drop your guard or take a short cut you’ll lose a client. Like owning your own house, the worst part is having to pay for things I really don’t care about like printers, fridges and health and safety stickers, but it’s gotta be done.

Describe Rich London in only 3 words…

Creative. Culture. Community.

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