Malcolm Malik started his brand back in 2017 - first known as Covey Clothing where he began to showcase his artistry through up-cycling, embroidery, and screen printing. In more recent times, Malcolm has been dedicating these past two years crafting unique and classic pieces for his brand. Back in August, I was able to have another conversation with Malcolm to see what he's been working on.
"So last time we talked, it was about your brand and how it got started. What has changed with Malcolm Malik since then?"
“I would say that I have a stronger identity of who I am as a designer and who I want to wear my work. I want to design for the person who appreciates creativity and one of kind pieces. Someone who doesn’t care about the latest trends but cares about the actual design and craftsmanship. I want to design for the person who will wear Malcolm Malik when it’s no longer 'in season' because it’s just that much of a staple design.”
"The pandemic was hard for a lot of small businesses. Has the pandemic affected your brand?"
“The pandemic has not really hurt me, but it did slow down the pace of larger companies I work with or purchase from. So in a way it’s affected us all. Being an emerging designer and working a job that I used to support Malcolm Malik, it has helped me on taking time with my craftsmanship and developing an actual foundation that will build longevity and not momentary success.
"What's your favorite part about being a designer?"
"My favorite part about being a designer would be my ability to control my own destiny. My ability to create things that make me happy and nobody can tell me what or how to do things from a designers perspective. Now that I have a small team of people who help me navigate as far as, being a brand, I'm able to make better business decisions. However, from a designers perspective, I just enjoy making things that not only inspire me but other people."
"Tell us what you've been working on"
"I have a collection releasing Fall/Winter. It consist of handcrafted/hand-stitched leather goods made in house by me. Products such as handbags, leather goods, card holders, larger tote bags, home goods.. Just trying to have a diverse amount of accessories people can get ahold of."
"I started designing bags when I saw a market in Chicago that nobody really pursued when it came to leather good. I went from being self taught, to taking a leather making class to learn the necessary skills needed to produce luxury leather goods. These skills have taken my creativity and craftsmanship to new levels. Nothing feels impossible now with Malcolm Malik. I plan on releasing everything from handbags, to leather coaster, wallets, belts and more. Just creating things that fit different aspects of design."
"How would you say this collection differs from your last release?"
"I would say just off the strength of the level of craftsmanship. I can honestly tell you this is my best work yet. Even from my cut and sew t-shirts. The quality is better, the stitching is better, embroidery on it is better. I'm excited show what I have learned and a more creative side of Malcolm Malik."
"What's been inspiring you lately?"
"It's always hard for me to pinpoint my inspirations. I think I subconsciously get inspired by things but never really able to say 'oh that inspired me'. Music is always one of my biggest inspirations. My everyday surroundings as far as the shapes I see, the architecture I come across, or how someone dresses. It's just different things I'm surrounding by or that I run into on a daily basis that inspires me, but I can't this particular thing inspires me."
"With us living in such a trendy world, how do you stay true to your brand?"
"Thats a great question. I think that despite how easy it is to be swayed and how people can gravitate towards 'whats cool' I’ve always had my own identity. I’ve always did what felt right for me. With leadership being apart of my identity and family structure, it’s easy to stay true to self. If people laughed at me or joked about me, I stood my ground, and been okay with what I felt was best. My dad always told me to be your own man so that principle has been instilled in not only my life but through Malcolm Malik. So yea, I’m not an easily swayed person so that’s how I stay grounded”
"Is there anything else to expect from Malcolm Malik?"
"I would like to tell people to expect the unexpected” Don’t anticipate my next drops or releases because sometimes I don’t even know. Essentially everything I am designing is made in house by me. From the concepts, the patterns, the first sample, and final design, it's fully designed and handcrafted by me. With how prevalent fast fashion is today, many designers either get their stuff cheaply mass produced or poorly designed, I want to show people what true craftsmanship is from Malcolm Malik”.
Malcolm Malik potential is limitless! This brand has only scratched the surface for its potential and we cannot wait to see what's next! Be on the lookout for Malcolm Malik upcoming release this Winter where you'll get to see various styles of his new work. Visit malcolmmalik.com and follow @malcolmmalik_ on instagram and twitter to stay updated and shop the latest collection. Thank you again Malcolm for taking your time to interview with Glass of Lemonade.