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Juice was the first to bring the likes of Neighborhood, and other brands to Hong Kong, the first to start a movement in a country which has seen a bigger following than any other in Street Culture. When I saw the pictures of the long queue outside Juice for the relaunch, it immediately made me think of how this phenomenom is such an important part of Hong Kong’s street culture, and that Juice has played a very big part of this, as has their brand Clot. I spoke to Kevin Poon, the co-founder of the Juice about the new store and the streetwear phenomenom that has hit Hong Kong so hard..
When did Juice first open its doors, what was the concept behind the store?
When Juice first started and opened its doors our concept was to carry labels that we liked as owners that weren’t already available in Hong Kong. The reason we named the store Juice was because of the impact the movie Juice had on all of us growing up, respect on the streets and the hustle because our store was a street fashion store, now fast forward 4 years, I think a lot of things have changed, our attitudes, mentality and growth and now we want something that reflects the current way we think, which is futuristic, space, clean, elegant, and cool.
Juice was instrumental in bringing street culture to Hong kong, but the culture has thrived since it was first introduced like no other place, what do you think are some of the reasons behind this?
I think that Hong Kong is a great place for street culture because we are constantly heavily engulfed on the streets, I think that in this day and age, people are always looking for fresh ways to be different and I think street fashion or fashion is a good way to express themselves, and since people’s favorite pass time and sport is shopping in Hong Kong, naturally I think it was a progression that people saw coming.
Worldwide, the streetwear market is changing, do you guys have any thoughts on the so called maturing of the market, how will this fit with the new Juice?
Streetwear will always be changing, i think when people say the market is maturing i think they also mean the people that are operating behind these labels, as people are getting older i think they are more about the quality and the message. I think its a great time to be and the new juice is a refined space that lets us showcase the labels we like and the brands we think make an impact as well as a showcase for our own label clot apparel.
Describe the new space ?
The new space is a futuristic shopping steez, its what we like to say shopping will be like in the future, maybe like 2010 or further, its got very clean contour lines and everything is fresh and with the best materials. Most of everything is electronic and automatic. So that’s really the concept behind the space, futuristic and elegant.
Are there any changes in the philosophy behind the store?
The philosophy behind the store will always be about respect, I think that’s a universal theme that will not be changed, what has changed is our mentality and how we approach the future, being righteous and continue to do things that we like.
How does Clot fit in with the store?
Clot apparel is a natural fit in the store because Clot is our label as well as our company, we have a special area for Clot apparel and will be launching a full collection starting fall winter 08, we have some interesting products dropping so please stay tuned for that.
What do you guys see as the future of streetwear, and what goals do you have at Juice with the new store?
The future of streetwear is crossing all boundaries, one world, type feel, I think that with the world in its current condition and the internet, people can find out about what everyone is doing on the internet and its going to cross boundaries into all types of levels.
At juice our goal is to continue to provide quality shopping experience and a one stop shop for all your needs. Also continue to push the envelop for fashion as well as culture.
Hong kong is renown for its high level of reselling, and reseller stores, being one of the first stores to bring streetwear into the country officially, how does this type of marketplace affect you?
We don’t really think about it, we do what we do, and they do what they do.
There’s alot of talk about the growing marketplace in mainland china, how do you see streetwear evolving in china, and do you guys have goals to expand into mainland?
Clot and Tom from ACU have opened the ACU store in Shanghai with great feedback, and look out for more shops from Juice / ACU in mainland china.