It must feel great to see people like Wiz Khalifa, T.I., Waka Flocka, Meek Mill or even a Paul Rodriguez wearing your gear.
Henry Li: Yeah that’s big, ’cause we can have a Mobb Deep and then we can have a Chris Brown [wearing our gear]. That’s like two extremes, they’re not even the same genre of music or demographic but it works. We’re honestly just [blessed] where we have like mainstream artists that are loyal to us and there’s always relationships.
Mike Yeung: The feeling when we first saw a stranger wear Entree was crazy, but seeing celebrities supporting Entree is indescribable. The first time I saw a flick of [Paul Rodriguez] wearing a shirt, I almost lost my voice! Just the fact that they even know about this small Brooklyn brand that started from nothing is insane.
Reginald Elliott: [It’s] exciting. Another feeling that brings excitement [however] is when charity opportunities come up and we get to work with underprivileged kids that can’t necessarily go out and get new t-shirts. When we can, we donate them and they always get so excited. I’m more excited about that than anything.
That’s very dope. Let’s play devil’s advocate, here. People might wonder if you guys get love from the mainstream because you pay celebrities to rock your stuff.
Henry Li: We’re lucky to the point where we don’t have to pay someone to wear our stuff. I mean, ideally that works, but then it’s not. They’re paid, so [for example] if you pay me to wear something, more than likely I’ll consider doing it because I want the money. But, in a sense, your heart wouldn’t be in it. So even if you wear it, you’re not willing to tweet about it, Facebook it, you know. We have that. Sometimes we just go through our Instagram and we just see different celebrities wearing it. We’d have no idea. They probably went to a boutique, were out of town, their cousin had it and they wanted it or because they seen some kid that had it on the train and they’re like “I want that.” It just works like that for us.
How has hip-hop played a part in influencing your brand’s designs?
Mike Li: Hip Hop raised us. We’re all huge hip-hop fans. Music in general speaks a universal language; Hip Hop was a genre that was created from a small sub-culture that wasn’t accepted at first. So, to see where hip-hop stands now, it’s truly inspiring. I thank hip-hop and the pillars of it for influencing not just the brand, but for everything we do.
Reginald, you’ve mentioned in previous interviews about wanting Entree to be the Ralph Lauren of streetwear. Can you elaborate on that?
Reginald Elliott: I don’t want to see this be an overnight success. I mean, that’s great financially, but it’s not long term. We’re trying to create a lifestyle here. So to me, like in previous interviews, I’ve said “We’re the Ralph Lauren of streetwear,” because, you know Ralph Lauren has never faded. He’s always maintained some type of stability in his collection so, for me, ideally that would be perfect, like from streetwear to cut and sew. We can be in XXL and then be in Details. I want to see like a George Clooney guy wearing a t-shirt walking around L.A. and then I want to see a cool kid like Wiz Khalifa just like running around with his friends looking crazy with a Entree sweatshirt on.
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