What was a favourite outfit of yours to wear to Jungle nights?
Ollie Evans: I’ve always been into designer labels and trying to get stuff that nobody else has. When I was going out raving I was really into brands like Armani, Prada, Burberry, Versace. I particularly liked early Evisu and Evis their pre-Levi’s lawsuit incarnation. It was really exclusive, and hard to get hold of when it first came over. I also really liked their Japanese heritage. Japan seemed a strong influence in plenty of our culture in that era, people like Photek and Designers Republics were using Japanese iconography of their work within the mid to late 90s. So, to answer your question, Evisu jeans, Burberry jumper, Prada trainers and a Lacoste cap were a giant look for me.
What kick started Too Hot? What 90s pieces and labels are having the largest resurgence in the meanwhile?
Ollie Evans: I’ve always wanted to run a business and Too Hot grew out of dealing Stone Island jackets online in my downtime. Sales got quicker and quicker so I expanded out and started dealing other brands, and it’s grown from there.
A whole lot of what we sell comes from stuff that I would see people wearing in raves; stuff my friends or I’d wear. There was always a powerful football firms element at quite a lot of the raves we went to in Birmingham; the Zulus were often out in force so you’d see lots of Stone Island and Burberry. There were also gangs like Burger Bar who would be at all the Birmingham raves, and they might wear quite a lot of Prada and Armani.
“By being in Birmingham we were exposed to rather a lot of various fashion from both the north and the south of the country, and our style was a collision”
Among my very own friends, it was all about Berghaus, Moschino, Iceberg, Ralph Lauren, Reebok and Nike. I think by being in Birmingham we were exposed to quite a bit of different fashion from both the north and the south of the country, and our style was a collision of both. This is definitely reflected in what I’ve been doing with Too Hot.
I’ve tried to maintain it to clothes that I would wear myself, or stuff my friends would wear back in the day. By keeping it so close it’s stayed pretty true. A very powerful thing to me in regards to the clothes we stock is that they are representative to a scene or a movement, and that they have a robust emotional connection to people. Alongside jungle there is powerful casual influence, a garage influence and a hip hop influence, everything is culturally related because that is when clothes are important.
Brands which might be proving popular at the momentStone Island is basically strong, Berghaus jackets sell really quick and are proving as popular in London as they’re Manchester, YSL is getting big again in its place to Polo and was massive on the club scene of the 90s so it’s good to see it back again. Burberry shirts are like gold dust, and naturally Iceberg and Moschino.