- Buyer's Guide
5 Minutes with BLC
BLC (Brownbreath Liberated Congeries) is a South Korean streetwear brand that’s been releasing some rad carry as of late; specifically daypacks that nail the fashion tip without sacrificing that functionality we love. So we were curious, and dropped them a line to delve a little deeper.
Head designer Keunbaik Lee gave us the lowdown…
What key insights drive your stuff?
Structure, purpose and beauty are the three key insights of the BLC brand. From another view, these are essential elements as well. BLC focuses on these three elements. Purpose is for the real-life experience, structure could be another word for Purpose but it is the very basic element of design. Simpler, more comfortable and new structure is approached, and then sometimes new form is found. Beauty is simply beauty; we try to create bags that are stable and beautiful.
Who else is doing rad things in the world of carry and why do you think they’re important?
FREITAG, because of a few things. Firstly, FREITAG’s concept of upcycling. Secondly, simple but very well-structured products. Thirdly, design elements such as fresh material and finally the fact that they have been keeping their identity for a long time. I think these are the factors that make FREITAG great.
They are good because they are doing their own thing, and people love them for it. Nowadays, people tend to copy what other new or famous brands do. But these guys consider their concept and philosophy very important and I think this is crucial for brands.
Are there any things other brands do that you think are great or could be improved?
They are a Korean brand and their office is not very far from BLC. I am aware that they are selling internationally too. From the feel that the name gives out, I think GEAR3 BY SAEN considers bags as ‘GEAR’. What I like about them is that whether the item is big or small, I can see their idea and it has simplicity and beauty in it. Also they are great for both female and male users as well. From their material, structure, form and everything else, I can see their effort to show something new.
I came across Ember Equipment on Kickstarter.com for the first time. The bag’s purpose, structure and their sub materials interested me. Also the fact that the products were easy to divide and all the pieces could adapt into daily life for different uses interested me too. It may seem like a simple idea, but they have pulled it off very well, and I am excited to see more of their work. When they were running the funding on Kickstarter, I couldn’t help out because the funding was over, but I support their start.
What single product are you most proud of and why?
I feel that this product explains the combination of purpose, structure and beauty. It was not exactly the best seller, however I have deep affection for this product. It was one of the designs from the beginning year. I tried to research and thought a lot about this product. When I was designing Intellect, I was really studying the product along with our factory master. As it was a new style for BLC, it was not really easy to pull off a portfolio bag that had BLC’s characteristics in it.
As the product name ‘Intellect’ gives out, the basic concept of the bag was a book. The main function of the bag is that you can carry it horizontally and vertically. If you carry it horizontally, it is hard to feel or see that it is shaped like a book. However, if you carry it vertically this would be more obvious. Of course, it is honestly more comfortable to carry it horizontally.
What’s next for you guys?
We are completely rebranding the brand. From the designs we had for eight years, we are trying to re-develop the current design into new designs. I think these will be ready to show in the beginning of 2015. The big work for us is to really think about how we are going to reinterpret the current identity and design. We are quite excited to share our new work with our customers and potential customers.
Moreover, we are trying to divide BLC’s lines into two targeted towards different audiences with different lifestyles.
The first lineup will be targeted towards people who have more playful lifestyles. They could be working in the art industry, such as artists, freelancers, dancers, musicians and so on. It includes bags that could be used for daily life too. The bags will carry BLC’s main identity which is style and various functions.
The other lineup will be targeted towards people who are involved in more business-like lifestyles. It would be formal yet stylish. Externally it would be minimal and simple, but the focus would be in the functional interior structure.
What do you carry daily and how?
I draw a lot, so I always carry a tablet PC. There is a laptop space in the bag, so it is really comfortable to carry my tablet PC. Also I carry an eco bag on the side as well, so that I can carry it when I need to go out somewhere nearby.
BLC Civitas Backpack / Vagabond – Manga / Quang Magazine – Manga / BLC Wallet / Britz Bluetooth earphone / Notebook / hand note / Cintiq tablet laptop / BLC pencase / Submarket bag