As someone who is always interested in up and coming brands, primarily ones with an LGBT focus, it gives me a great sense of adoration when there is one in particular I really like a lot that has had some fantastic developments to them, all within a short time frame. This can be said of the up and coming and booming clothing line Krave and Kulture, who just relaunched their website with four incredible new collections for the savvy & smart guy.
krave & kulture
Manhattan Digest held its 2nd fundraiser this past Friday night at Gym Sportsbar down in Chelsea. With the fear of Hurricane Joaquin (Phoenix) settling into New York that night, I was worried that a lot of people wouldn’t show up due to how bad the weather was going to be. Regardless, a ton of friends, family and friendly customers stopped by to donate, have some delicious cupcakes and submit their tickets in hopes to win some fantastic prizes.
Overall we raised hundreds of dollars for cancer research with even more donations coming in over the next day or so. That makes me extremely happy to know that doing something as simply as a fundraiser can hopefully save at least one life with the money that we raised.
I would love to thank everyone that showed up, as well as Serge Sterbois, Jerry Reilly and the Gym Sportsbar staff for their amazing job before, during and after the fundraiser. I would also love to give a shoutout to Tim de Iturriaga at Adonis Lounge for finding a host for the event (the handsome and wonderful Jason) who went out of his way to talk to every person who came down into the basement area about the charity. Finally, thank you to Huascar Aquino from H Bake Shop who generously donated a ton of cupcakes for everyone to devour and enjoy. Got so many amazing reviews from the cupcakes so let’s hope it drives in some new customers for him!
Finally, a big thanks to all the companies that donated generously for this event. This includes Krave & Kulture, Crunch Gym, Haru Sushi, Jacob’s Pickles, Best Barber in Hell’s Kitchen, The New York Beer Company, The Jolly Monk, Hotel Belleclaire, Otto’s Tacos, H Bake Shop, BKB Restaurant, Cantina Rooftop, Morton’s Grille and Bear Skn. My gratitude is endless and I really appreciate what each of you did, so thank you again!
Will hopefully have another one in early 2016. In the meantime, thanks to everyone again who participated and enjoy the rest of your weekend!
After having an absolutely amazing first fundraiser back in March, we at Manhattan Digest have decided to do a second one in hopes that this will be even more successful than the first. Manhattan Digest is throwing its 2nd annual fundraiser this coming Friday on October 2nd, taking place at my favorite gay bar in the world Gym Sportsbar from 7-9 PM. Similar to last time, it will be held in the basement area of the bar, where you can come and donate money to support breast cancer research in my late mother Lisa’s memory and bid on some incredible prizes that you yourself can actually win!
We are echoing the same format we did back in March, in the form of a silent auction (raffle style) where you can take your raffle tickets and put them in the containers of the prizes that you want to win. $5 gets you 2 tickets, $10 gets you 5 tickets and $20 gets you 10 tickets. You are more than willing to donate more if you would like. A very handsome gentleman from The Adonis Lounge will be at the door to give you your tickets so there is a bonus incentive there as well!
So what are the fabulous and amazing prizes that you are able to potentially win? Take a look at what we have in store!
One free night at The Hotel Belleclaire
$100 Amazon Gift Card
$250 Gift Card to Jacob’s Pickles
Dinner for two at BKB Restaurant ($100 Value)
Dinner for two at Cantina Rooftop ($100 Value)
Haircut and Shave from Best Barber in Hell’s Kitchen ($80 Value)
Gift card from Krave & Kulture
Custom Cake for up to 5 people from H Bake Shop ($150 Value)
$25 gift card from Otto’s Tacos
$50 gift card to The Jolly Monk
$50 gift card to Haru Sushi
$50 gift card to New York Beer Company
$50 gift card to Morton’s Grille
3 Month membership to Crunch Gym ($240 Value)
If you are unable to attend, there are other ways of donating where you can still win one of the amazing prizes. Simply send an email to [email protected] with how you want to donate. We accept Venmo, Paypal and other types of payments. Please also include how you want to allocate the tickets. Other than, that I look forward to seeing everyone at Gym Sportsbar this coming Friday night!
In recent years, gay men’s fashion has been primarily designated to one or two different companies who keep coming out with the same tired formats for the same tired types of guys. Luckily, there is a new west coast brand that in a short matter of time will be making quite the buzz on both coasts and internationally as well. This is called Krave & Kulture, which is based in San Diego, California.
Krave & Kulture was recently started by business partners David Quintanilla and Bryan Miller, who took clever print designs and is turning them into something that will become red hot in the ever popular world of T-Shirts and accessories. The bold and unique concepts are perfect now that the weather is finally becoming warmer in the east coast, and will be a topic of conversation at many upcoming gay events such as Bear Week in Provincetown and all the circuit parties here on Fire Island. What is even better is that Krave & Kulture doesn’t discriminate when it comes to body size, something that other brands tend to do (yet they never admit it). Their sizes run from Small to XXL and are designed to fit each and every type of guy. Smart advertising if I may say so myself.
I sat down with David & Bryan to discuss Krave & Kulture as a whole, the concepts behind all of it and its hopeful future in 2015 and beyond. Take a look.
So tell me how the concept of Krave & Kulture started for both of you?
David- I’m a photographer and a graphic designer by trade. I wanted to come up with another way to put my designs on something other than a canvas or gallery wall so I started coming up with a concept of making clothing with my images. Bryan and I had been friends for quite a while, and when I was sitting down with him and picking his brain about the business, he had a lot of really good information to offer. He had just left a corporate job from a major corporation and slowly we started developing a business plan which organically turned into a partnership.
When you start any type of a brand there are usually people or companies that inspire you to do this line of work. Who were your inspirations?
David- That is something that makes us a little bit different is that the inspiration for Krave & Kulture isn’t really other designers or brands. We get inspired by art, and being in the gay culture we are inspired by masculinity, testosterone and being around men. Also, we started off with the idea of the west coast culture and kind of lifestyle here which is why we decided to do ready to wear as opposed to going down other avenues.
How did you guys come up with the name “Krave & Kulture”?
David- Krave & Kulture was basically was one of several names that was trying to embody what we are trying to do. The idea of doing something fresh, bold yet casual and easy for guys. We developed this around a subculture of men who wanted casual clothing that was really cool but easy. Not to endlessly figure out what goes with what, but just throw on a top and go to the beach, bar, coffee shop or a nightclub with it on for instance. So the idea of craving that kind of culture is where that came from and we decided to spell it with K to add a little flare.
Sometimes gay brands tend to skew towards a skinnier and much more lean demographic, yet I noticed that your sizes run from small to XXL. Did you have a strategy from the get go to include all different sizes for the gay community?
Yep, absolutely. That was the whole goal from the beginning is that if we were going to do this that we would create designs for guys who felt comfortable in it. There is a big bear community not only in San Diego but in the entire country and we wanted to identify that. The clothes shouldn’t be just designed for the Abercrombie & Fitch type model, there are regular guys who wanted to be seen in those cool types of shirts.
An average gay brand would carry extra smalls, smalls and mediums whereas we decided to start with small and work our way up to XXL, just because for the bigger guys it is more about comfort and is designed to fit them perfectly. I am a bigger guy myself so I like my shirt to be tight on the arms, tight on the chest but a little bit of room in the stomach area. I designed them selfishly I guess because I wanted to feel as comfortable in them as the rest of the guys who were trying them on. This also carries to our accessory line as well, because there is a lot of times where guys have bigger wrists. We have two sizes available- standard and thick, so we want to have guys who have thicker wrists feel welcomed as well to try them on.
How do you guys go into designing the shirts and accessories?
David- The designs on the shirts for this Spring and Summer collection are four collections. One of them is nautical, we wanted to design around the sea and the ocean. If you look at some of the stuff, we reference old school tattoos such as anchors amongst others. Another collection is Popart, so like a balloon dog with a Ken Doll on it. Like a fun conversation piece with a bold graphic on it. The other two collections are phrases, whether they are funny or conversation starters. The other side of it is that we offer full print photo shirts. So I take my photography and manipulate it and make some pretty cool graphic on the shirts.
You are based in San Diego, do you have a storefront there or are you based remotely?
David- Our business plan is to sell wholesale to retailers. As of right now, we don’t have any plans to become a storefront, however we just want to make this available for the general population of the United States and internationally, so we started with the online store.
What are your hopeful goals for Krave & Kulture going into the rest of 2015 and beyond?
Bryan- We’ve got a plan in place that is going to help us not only create a presence on the west coast but hopefully everywhere. We started speaking out to different retailers, some that have picked us up, and our goal really is to expand it as far as we humanly can. When that business picks up we want to expand our line and do more than T-shirts and accessories. We don’t just want to be known for just those things, we want to be known as a lifestyle store and work with those guys in the demographics that we discussed to be able to have some really cool and edgy items to wear in their everyday lives.
If you happen to be in the San Diego area today, Krave & Kulture are having their first launch party at Urban Mo’s located at 308 University Avenue.