Fanclub was originally born at the back end of 2015 and when trying to decide on a name we really started to look at the reasons we both wanted a brand, what we wanted it to stand for and what it meant to us, and although we had a refresh the deep rooted core hasn't changed. We wanted to create a brand that has a lot of nostalgic soul, all the movements and amazing women from the past that's where our main design aesthetic and inspiration comes from, but it was more than that. We wanted customers or (members) to feel like they've bought into an idea, a lifestyle, a community where they can be exactly who they want, stand for what they wanted to stand for but not take life too seriously. With that in mind we knew slogans, words and feelings were what we were passionate about and with that all in mind, the name Fanclub was born.
Lets get personal
Sisterhood and the idea of women building each other up has always been at the heart of the brand, but we never really realised just how much it ran through our veins until the other day when we had a bit of an epiphany moment. As you know Fanclub was created by two sisters, but there are actually 5 of us in total that make up our crazy old family. To take you back to our beginning, we had an amazing childhood filled with strong family values and were always so close as sisters (finishing each others sentences, letting our parents know what the other one wanted even before we could speak for ourselves) but our family was soon to change.
Our family broke up and we experienced what we can now say was a traumatic divorce, but one we learnt so much from. All of this made us come together, our mum and the three sisters. We called ourselves an unbreakable cube or pod that even when the going gets tough we always have the pod to support us. Since then we have both grown up in a commune style house hold very open, warm and surrounded by women. This experience really taught us just how powerful sisterhood can be. Now don't get me wrong we're not anti men and we still have a relationship with our father who brought two more girls into our lives (to make up 5 sisters). We adore them and treat them just as we would if we grew up with them (even the older sister teasing mentality) but I suppose we just came to realise how strong the power of supportive women around you can really be.
I know it can be cliche to say your sisters are your best friends but it really is the case for us, anyone who meets us always comments on how alike our mannerisms are and just how close we are. We also have sisters who we choose like friends, extended family, work colleagues who have all come into the pod to create this sort of club. This is what we want for Fanclub and with that we wanted to praise all the amazing women who helped bring Fanclub to life.
The Fanclub family
Beth from Spiltmilkpress
We hooked up with Local Nottingham artist Beth, after coming across her shop of beautiful pop culture and indie haze inspired art. She worked with us to design a nico inspired art print and illustrated a dope ass t-shirt. She has some crazy talent and is exceptional at understanding what was in our heads and transforming our ideas into dope ass art!
The graphic goddess
Olivia from Oliviaillustrations
We first hooked up with Olivia at the beginning of our launch plans, we needed a new logo to inspire us and bring our brand to life again, this Mancunian based graphics goodness put her pen to paper and designed a super freaking cool logo, (inspired by old school guitar logos) we wanted something retro, clean and to the point and she didn't disappoint !
The printers and manufacturers
Hannah and Harlow
We first worked with Hannah a good few years back, she has hand printed and hand stitched every graphic t-shirt. She's not only local to Nottingham which is always good to support but also is a small independent which means we can sit and talk her through all our ideas and visions, something many printers don't provide. Harlow is a London based manufacture made up of 4 women, they specialise in knitwear and have honestly been such a pleasure to work with. Both being small companies, they provide services to suit the needs of a brand our size and support small batch production, they're not trying to rip you off and we trust them both completely. Which is a huge thing when your putting your faith in these companies!
The girl behind the lens
When we first reached out to Manchester based photographer Holly, her enthusiasm for our concept and relaunch was perfect. Hiring her for our relaunch collection photoshoot felt a perfect fit after scrolling through her dreamy raw portrait style photography, she has a knack for making something look nostalgic and has magic eye for giving something or someone that feeling. We can't wait to share all the 60s and 70s inspired snaps.
Starr the superstar
When we started searching for the girl we wanted to use as our model, we thought who better then an up and coming Manchester based model, front woman and superstar (Starr Clare). She has a nostalgic soul and spirit and her look is that of a cool contemporary indie girl (plus with a name like Starr what else could we ask for). On shoot day we were amazed with how quickly she got into role, we stated we wanted to recreate the feeling of Warhols muses (think Edie Sedgwick and Nico) and she did just that, she was an absolute rock star to work with and we're so happy with the retro roots she gave the pictures.
Clare (aka the stone witch)
Clare is a personal friend of ours and a badass jewellery maker too! She has her own brand bonearrow filled with silver hardware and raw stones which you can check out here
Clare's talents don't stop there, she has been a make up artist for a good few years now, working in fashion and film and we hired her to paint Starr's face on our shoot, she referenced 70s blue shadow and natural 60s skin which honestly gave our photoshoot the perfect retro nod. She's a rebel at heart, a grown up goth and one talented soul (Whose hands should be insured)
Another Brand who helped support our launch was K.fines Jewellery store in Nottingham, filled with amazing contemporary independents such as Mikaela Lyons. We reached out to them and they kindly loaned us some amazing pieces to help bring the shoot to life, a mixture of signet rings, statement necklaces and big hoops it really helped bring the shoot to the next level.
The brand therapist
An integral person and cog in our launch is Fashion consultant and all over sweetheart Elizabeth Stiles. We started working with Elizabeth at the beginning of the year, she got our brand out of the rut and brought inspiration back into our minds, her smart advice and friendly tone is what made us kick our ass into gear and bring our soul back to the brand. She really was a true diamond!
The brand sister
We couldn't not give a shout out to our right arm and sister Steffi, from carting us around to just being there to moan to when something doesn't work, she's our mascot and cheerleader and now she's gone off on her own to be the badass beauty therapist and nail artist Nottingham has seen. We couldn't be more proud of our fellow pea from the pod.
The Nostalgic Soul
The mother of Fanclub
I didn't feel right to have an issue about sisterhood and not mention our rock through every Fanclub fuck up, who parties with us along the highs and is their for the lows.... Momma Bras is one hell of a superstar and from making sure we're stopping for lunch to picking up missed parcels, the future of Fanclub has only been made possible from this legend!
To all our fans...
Lastly and this is a big one, we couldn't of done any of the amazing hook ups, collaborations and more if it wasn't for all of our hardcore fans, those who have emailed, dm and followed our story... This one's for you! We hope you know just how dope ass we think all of you are.
We hope you enjoyed reading this blog, for all those who have sisters or who have yet to find them in the world come and join the movement, the sisterhood... The Fanclub!
we hope this was a bit of an incite to our roots and just how deep they run.... Behind a great woman, there's a heck load of other dope ass women cheering her on... and that is so freaking true!
Stay cool Sisters!