Tomorrow is a clothing brand fueled by instinct

Whenever Tomorrow releases a line of shirts, they hold a launch in the form of a gig. Their debut collection established the brand’s intimate relationship with music with a shirt that featured that gig’s lineup — a way to commemorate the night and wear the memory. When Tomorrow released their first line of shirts though, the definition I heard of the brand — which at that point hadn’t been selling their wares at bazaars or more conventional outlets — was that they specialized in gig-specific wear. Fair to say, but it’s more than that.

I’m at Mow’s watching Tomorrow’s founders Tim Lopez and Andrew Panopio, along with the rest of their team, getting ready for the night’s gig, fixing the second collection’s display. The atmosphere of this momentary pre-gig lull lacks the kind of ambient glitz and glam you typically feel at, say, other streetwear events. This night, which showcases the easy marriage between cool-ass shirts and good-ass music, feels more like this: a bunch of creative friends helping out a bunch of other creative friends, making everybody else feel welcome.

It’s reflective of who Tim and Andrew are as people and as artists — laid-back, good-natured. According to Tim, the name of Tomorrow was inspired by a lesson from philosophy professor Eduardo Calasanz. “Those who can’t sleep at night, they don’t know how to hope,” Tim paraphrases. “Because it’s like, they don’t know how to let things go, they don’t know how to allow things to happen, to allow God or the universe to take action. They wanna control so much, they can’t sleep, they just work through the night, they don’t allow themselves to take a break and rest.” Enter the tenets that make the brand: optimism, hope, looking forward to the next day.

Though both Andrew and Tim have both been formally trained as designers, they didn’t imagine that they’d end up in the world of fashion design and retail. It was sort of a happy accident, how both Andrew and Tim became interested in making cool clothes. “We’re into thrift shopping a lot. Whenever we’d see shirts that we’d like, [I’d say] ‘Oh s***, Tim, check this out,’” Andrew says. “There’s always an aesthetic that just kinda hits us in the right note. As designers, we were kinda inspired by that. We could do that.”

It’s easy to see that easygoing gut-feel approach in Tomorrow’s second collection, which Andrew explains to me is about “channelling the animal within you.” The lineup shirt has a two-headed duck breathing fire. Another was inspired by the Yorgos Lanthimos film The Lobster. The back of the grey sweater has the face of cat looking as if it was envisioned for stained glass. Nothing so mind-bogglingly deep you could fall in and never reach the bottom. “You really don’t have to be super precise with what you’re trying to say. You just have to have the idea really,” Andrew says. “And I’d say that’s something I like about the T-shirt racket that we’re doing is, as designers you have to be super careful about what you design, but I get to be an artist when I’m making T-shirts. You get to just be creative and passionate and like, for 90 percent of the time, just follow what you feel.”

Planning for the future comes naturally to Tomorrow, because of course. Fans of the brand can look forward to collaborations, more events, maybe a few pocket collections. The future is of course nothing to worry about too much, if the origins of the brand are any indication of where it’ll go. Andrew puts it best: “We just thought it would be a fun idea. Like, we’re not really entering this with the biggest, most exact expectations. But think what’s safe to say is we wanna have fun with it. As long as we’re following our nose with that, as designers na rin, I think it’ll be good.”

Photos courtesy of Tomorrow. To shop for shirts from Tomorrow’s second collection, go here.

Tags:
#art #design #music #style

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