What’s going on y’all, go ahead and introduce yourselves to the people
What’s up god, this is Miguel & Marco Romano, twin brothers, artists, and creators of Maybe Not LLC.
How was life growing up for you two?
Miguel/Marco – Life was and is absolutely awesome, but also very weird and tense at moments.
It’s definitely been a crazy ass ride, growing up for the both of us.
Even though life was tough and blurry growing up, we are still very thankful for the challenges as they made us who we are, and helped shaped our ambitions for how we want to mold our futures.
Growing up on the Southside of Chicago, we used to just stay down there, and literally never really knew shit outside of our neighborhood. We never imagined how vast the spectrum of perspectives in Chicago was, having only ever been exposed to one part of the city.
We ended going to different High Schools too, and that’s when we first realized how much we just didn’t know and how possible everything was.
Marco : I ended up at Lane Tech on the Northside, like an hour away from the crib. I’ve always appreciated being able to expand my knowledge of the world but the way school is set up, we’re basically forced to all learn the same criteria, and then we’re tested and compared… & literally most of the shit they taught me I’ve just never cared for… yeah I mean certain things interested me like ; physics, chemistry, mathematics ( to a certain extent), art…. but even then it’s like we’re forced to waste our time and just conform to what they teach us… and then they wonder why kids still don’t know what they want to study in college… I still graduated though, just cause I actually care to further continue to expand my education… For now i’m just trying to learn as much as I can on my own and through trial and error, not to mention the largest source of data on Earth… The internet…. I mean it’s 2017 guys, c’mon. Anything and everything you could possibly want to know is literally at the tip of your fingers. I do eventually want to master in NeuroScience though, so i’m still gonna end up making the move to college/ a university… but that’s long term… cause unfortunately that costs a lot of money and I don’t fuck with debt. Fuck those chains. First let me rack up my money and spread this message to the world, plus it’s not like i’m not learning a shit ton in the real world… haha
Miguel: I went to Whitney M. Young, dropped out, and then graduated through an accelerated credit recovery school like 8 months before I was supposed to at Whitney, so it was lowkey bussin’.
But bro fuck school, I don’t think I was ever on time, and I never fucked with the idea of learning in a confined environment with a competitive academic and social structure.
I love learning though. I’m constantly acquiring new information about concepts that actually interest me, like : fashion, music, design, sacred geometry, our physical reality, the psychology of the mind, string theory and the multiverse theory, ending homelessness and hunger, stabilizing world markets, type shit.
When did you guys begin to witness your creative talents?
Miguel – Since real young I felt I was always creative and open-minded.
The first medium I dabbled with was drawing, mostly abstract. On top of drawing, I’ve been producing music for five years now, while engineering for three.
Designing and producing clothes has really been a product of the creative talents that I dwelled in growing up, but most of the inspiration has came from my experiences through time, and in my rugged environment that constantly has tried to pull me into the cycle of conformity and repetitive consumership.
Marco – My creative talents really go as far back as like 2nd grade. I used to get called out for not paying attention in class and drawing while my teacher was talking. So I guess i’ve always really just appreciated art. Then around like 7th grade I got into Music. My older brother was a DJ and my other brother used to be a drummer and I just remember how psyched they always were about performing. So that damn near influenced me to get involved. I started off by borrowing my bro’s Numark Controller and spinning at a couple parties in Middle School…. Then in High School I took a class on sound engineering and got more into the actual sound production and engineering side of music. Over time I became more involved with sound design & actually ended up putting together a whole studio at my crib.
It was really after I started dabbling with the idea of Sound Design though that I first realized how raw it was to really be able to make things my own way and be able to shape and mold them whichever which way I liked and that’s really what got me to start playing with clothes and graphic design. I started off with straight GFX at first, drawing on photoshop/ illustrator and printing onto shirts but then I got into actual garment creation… Now i’m really trying to have as much involvement as possible in all my creations, like literally picking out my fabrics, stitch types, print types, or even with music breaking my songs down to the literal frequency of the instruments…
I’m still most definitely planning on incorporating my passion for music into the brand but honestly for now i’m just trying to go crazy as a designer, really just focusing on clothing creation and graphic design…
You guys run the clothing company “MAYBE NOT”, what ultimately led you guys to the creation of the company?
MAYBE NOT came about in 2014 when we were Juniors in High School. The company birthed from us wanting to do something more with our lives, and really just in search for a platform to voice our thoughts and be able to create dope ass products with qualitative means to spread our message through it. During this time we had been realizing a lot of people were lost in life, including damn near ourselves, in the sense that we were in a constant loop of impulse and pleasure, and never really embracing ourselves in the what really matters here in what we call life. We wanted to create a platform that could act as a sort of catalyst, and invoke thought within people to help them realize that there is so much more to this reality, so much more to what we’re told.
We wanted to promote the dream of life man, that everything and anything is possible, the power to manifest your dreams into existence and live them out.
MAYBE NOT is a reflection of us. Our innately rebellious energy really helped us bring life to the brand. Since we first really started peeping how society tries to manipulate our thoughts and confine us into a linear mindset, we said fuck that. We need change. Society needs to be restructured, we need freedom, and not the kind where my 61 year old mom still works 40 hour work weeks. Not the kind where our older brother whom also served for the military is homeless in LA, and is constantly undermined for it by the system and its loyal supporters.
Love you mom, love you bro.
What is the overall meaning and message that the brand embodies?
The brand pushes you to think about everything and no matter how real something might seem, to always question everything and decide for yourself.
We use that conceptual leverage to continue our growth & to actually think on matters in a way that can truly shine light on the truth…. even though it ain’t always pretty…
MAYBE NOT is not limited to the abstraction of clothing.
We are a message, and a prominent idea. An idea that transcends the physical. We want to break the loop, and teach everyone to love, save, and be themselves.
Talk to us about your first collection
Our first collection was back in Fall/Winter 2014 and it was called the “Don’t Fall/ Winter” Collection. For our first, our numbers were good, but from a creative perspective, we’ve definitely came a long way!
That first collection was a huge life-changing lesson that taught us a lot about the process of running our own business and actually producing quality goods, being able to turn something from an idea and manifest it into reality . Since this was our first collection we put a lot of thought into the feedback and on how they would react to it, but in the end we’ve learned to have faith in our own creative minds and to truly create from the soul, regardless of what anyone else thinks…
You recently just put out a collection called ‘Structure’ Talk to us about that collection
THE STRUCTURE COLLECTION ENTAILS OUR CONTEMPORARY VIEWS AGAINST HYPERCAPITALISM AND THE ARTIFICIALLY
MANIFESTED HIERARCHY THAT EXISTS IN SOCIETY.
WE CHOSE TO USE MORE DIMINISHED COLORS TO REFLECT THE OBVIOUS CONDITION OF OUR PLANET CURRENTLY, WITH FEATURED ABSTRACT DESIGNS WE CREATED. ONE IN PARTICULAR IS OUR ANTI PYRAMID DESIGN, WHICH IS ESSENTIALLY 7 TRIANGLES FLIPPED AND STACKED TO CREATE THE IMAGE OF A FLIPPED PYRAMID… WE ALSO FEATURED OVERALL BRAND
INSTILLING LOGOS TO ESTABLISH THE MOVEMENT.
In December you guys had a pop-up shop for your most recent collection. How did that experience go for you guys?
The pop-up shop was dope as fuck.
It was at this shipping containment kind of spot in Wicker Park called the Boombox. We showcased our ‘Structure’ collection and really got to vibe with everyone who came out to support. It was really cool being able to provide insight into who we are and what we stand for to those who were curious about the cause. The feedback was love, and that’s what we’re all about.
What are your guys plans for 2017?
In the first quarter we’ll be releasing a couple new projects.
An almost EP type of conceptual collection entitled “Don’t Do It” with a short visual to elaborate on the idea behind it.
A one of one collection, entitled : Vault 01, as a sort of prelude to our SS17.
SS17 “THE RESISTANCE”.
We have a lot of crazy concepts and ideas that we’re putting into this one, design wise and fabric curation as well. We’ve been working on this project for over a year now and it’ll without a doubt show for it.
We’ll definitely be having more functions, pop ups, and collaborative projects as well.
Stay tuned to the frequency!
When it’s all said and done how do you want to be remembered?
We want people to remember us as overall beings of life who didn’t fold or conform to the social structure, and to the rules and regulations of order and physicality. We want to be the kids who pioneered the spiritual revolution and helped break the monotonous loop that engulfs us today.
Those kids that put their souls and energy into designing the new world.
A truly free world, where we are all on the same wavelength of love and light.
Written By: Nicholas Rud