For this exclusive Daily Denim Dose story, we ventured over to Hackney Wick to meet the traditional signwriter, Ornamental Conifer and his KINGDOM of KICKS crew to get the low down on his rising success and to take a tour of the crew’s studio and bike workshop.
Nicolai Sclater is a traditional signwriter offering an original approach to commercial art. Working out of East London’s creative hub, Hackney Wick, he has designed for the likes of Ted Baker, Aesop and most recently, Blitz Vintage. However it’s Sclater’s most personal work on vintage biker jackets that has gained interest in the fashion press. Intrigued by his designs, we asked Sclater to collaborate with us on a denim driven shoot. The result is a unique visual story of the Ornamental Conifer and tribute to the rising KINGDOM of KICKS crew.
Nico’s passion for custom and vintage motorcycles has lead him and his close friends to establish Kingdom of Kicks, a new generation of motorcyclists made up of creative types from the likes of graphic and web designers, photographers and film crews – all of whom contributed to this shoot. The looks draw upon a re-emerging fascination with American biker subcultures, focusing on back panel illustrations and subtle typography that channel the hardcore biker gang jackets of the late 40s and early 50s. Using key components like vintage cut-off jackets and slashed denim shirts as a base, Sclater exercises an interplay between art, fashion and traditional biker roots, calling references from local surroundings, traditional navajo prints and nostalgic phrases to adorn his jackets.
Alex Berry and Chris ‘Punk’ Rogers of Ladoja and Sons joined us on the shoot to give you this short film
Take a look at the full shoot after the click.
Hand-painted denim by Nicolai Sclater of Ornamental Conifer
Photography by Sam Christmas
Location: Kingdom of Kicks