Check out Keith Hufnagel's new CCS exclusive interview in which Keith discusses dirty beers in Copenhagen, receiving a cease and desist from Rollerblade, the inception of HUF as a brand, as well as the natural sequence of events that have led to the growth of the brand. Check out a preview of the interview below, and click here to read the entire interview.
What series of events led you to start a skateboard lifestyle brand?
I was skateboarding everyday and traveling a lot to London, Tokyo, and New York, and there was an underground clothing and footwear following going on in all these major cities. I was moving to San Francisco and I wanted to open a shop that sold sneakers and smaller clothing brands. I wanted something in my life that would present a new type of challenge, as well as provide me with something that I could fall back on after skateboarding.
After we opened the shop, we started printing our own T-shirts. The brand then started to organically grow. We started making our own hats, then pants, and before you knew it we had an entire line. Now we have a full footwear line and a solid skate team.
At what moment did you realize the brand was a success?
When we received a cease and desist letter from Rollerblade based on one of our designs, I knew we had made it. No, I am kidding. I don’t think I have ever sat there and said ok, now the brand is a success. The continuous growth of the brand is an ongoing, and very challenging process. I want to continue the growth of our footwear program, continue our skate tours, as well as continue doing cool collaborations with other brands and artists. Rather than analyzing the success of the brand, I would prefer to keep creating and moving forward.
What’s the most epic team story from 2013 – 2014?
Probably Dirty Beers in Copenhagen during the Thrasher X HUF Stoops Euro Tour. The whole Stoops Euro Tour was pretty sick. It is always rad when you can get the entire team together to skate in a foreign city, do demos, hang out, and drink beer.