In the latest issue of Oi Polloi’s Pica-Post ‘zine, the e-tailer has tapped Shinya Hasegawa to interview Engineered Garments head honcho Daiki Suzuki. The two former co-workers have worked side-by-side in their days at Woorich Woolen Mills and the interview reveals what it’s like for both as brand owners. Hasegawa, who now runs his own upcoming brand Battenwear, discusses developing themes for collections, American made manufacturing, and love for surfing with his mentor. Photos were taken as part of the editorial to showcase the latest offerings from Engineered Garments shot around the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of NYC, which can be seen above. Read an excerpt of the interview below. To read the full interview visit the Oi Polloi website.

SH: Unlike a lot of other companies who just copy vintage clothing—for example use the same exact pattern but just change the fabric—Engineered Garments always does something different to give each item a certain twist, making it more suited for contemporary life. What’s the thought process behind that?

DS: With Engineered Garments, I mostly try not to think about whether something is fashionable or not. Because what I personally think of as cool isn’t always fashionable. The kind of clothes that influence me and form the base of Engineered Garments are all over the place—clothes that I want to wear, clothes that I used to buy when I was younger, clothes that I wanted to buy but couldn’t, clothes that are really ugly, clothes that make you think “no way”, clothes that are shocking. I get inspiration from hunting gear, workwear, sportswear. Sometimes designer clothes inspire me, sometimes uniforms do. All of these elements are part of my design process and then on top of all of that, I’ll always feel like changing this or that, just to make things more interesting and stand-out. That’s the twist, I guess. Every season, I’m thinking of what inspires me and trying to find balance in my designs between all the competing elements.

[via Oi Polloi]