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The team behind new label, Without Backbones hopes to “develop, stretch, and refine [their] designs, hoping to keep” their label “fresh and interesting” for themselves, as well as others.  They also hope to “reach as many people as possible, and like a good album, be remembered.”  Behind the label are designers Robin Graves and Joseph Hodgkinson.

Graves spent his adolescence growing up in a provincial seaside town.  This inspired him both negatively and positively.  For Graves, design has always “been more of a natural need or desire for something new to experience.” 

Always interested in the aesthetics of design, Graves studied illustration at the University of Brighton.  The environment fostered at Brighton led to an interest in fashion illustration and print making.  Since then, Graves has worked in the fashion industry “designing in house” and freelancing “for clients including the Rolling Stones.”  Working for the past seven years, Graves has always documented personal work, hoping some day to create his own stamp on the fashion industry.


Hodgkinson, on the other hand studied audio visual production in London, but “always had an interest in design and fashion.” 

Hodgkinson met Graves, while they were still at uni and somewhere along the line, decided to make clothes.  Over the past few years they have produced limited runs of directional graphic t-shirts, but it’s only now that they have produced their first "collection proper.”  They describe the spring collection as “a dress code of black on black, barely there boys in oversized sportswear, Pikeys and dogs, and 90’s suburbia England.”


What does Without Backbones mean?

Robin Graves:  Is it bad to say that it’s meaningless? I guess aesthetically we liked the way the words look and sound. I suppose it does have a dark cynical tone…… But I think we are ok with that!

Who are your favorite designers?

Joseph Hodgkinson: I never really held much loyalty to any designers, but currently I’m finding Damir Doma and Juun.J quite interesting.

What magazines do you read?

JH: I work in publishing so I probably read too many magazines. 10 men is usually pretty good.

Do you think that the internet and social websites have had an effect on the fashion industry?

RG: Obviously online shopping has had a huge effect on the fashion industry in general. But for smaller brands, It allows them to get their products out there easily and cheaply. Getting into stores and finding agents can be a total ball ache! We are currently setting up our online store. So watch this space!

As far as social websites like myspace? I’m not sure they have had a massive impact on the fashion industry, not in the same way that it has for the music industry, but I guess that will change with sites like IQONS and Lexposure.


Without Backbones is currently being sold through Anio showrooms, but the label will eventually be sold on through the label’s own online store, Cold Hands.  Keep checking the official Without Backbones website for more information.