Shane Gonzales was just 19 years old when he created his own clothing line. Two years later, ‘MIDNIGHT STUDIOS’ is one of the most influential and well known brands in this current youth driven fashion surge.
Different to the skate aesthetic, MIDNIGHT STUDIOS is based on 70s and 80s punk rock. Biker jackets, collaged t shirts, and bondage trousers make up the fundamentals of the overall design. The expeditious rise of the brand combined with the age of the designer, makes me believe that Shane Gonzales will become one of the leading designers in fashion for the future.
Growing up listening to punk rock, Shane Gonzales became infatuated with the style and culture that surrounded the movement. According to the designer himself, his influences derived from flicking through “old punk records” and reading “vintage punk magazines”. His creative process then included taking “newspaper clippings and random pictures” that he found and “cutting them out and collaging them”. As seen on the black long sleeve t shirt, old rock and roll slogans and photos have been printed on carefully, to create a modern high end fashion piece which has similarities to Raf Simons’s AW 04/05 collection.
Another particular midnight studios piece which cements the brands ethos, vision and also Shane Gonzales’s talent, is in his AW16/17 collection. His bondage double waisted jeans retailed at £308; they have two embroidered patches on the back right leg and come with front and back metallic ring accents, giving the piece uniqueness and grunge.
As well as producing four collections independently between the ages of 19-22, Shane Gonzales’s promise and expertise have been clearly recognised by the design world. His list of collaborative partners are photographer Steve Emberton, clothing company OFF WHITE, and most recently, watch company G-Shock.
In pre fall of 2015, MIDNIGHT STUDIOS teamed up with legendary Sex Pistols photographer Steve Emberton. In his first collaborative project Shane Gonzales stepped up the Rock ’N’ Roll factor within his brand. He released a range of T shirts, hoodies and button ups that included old school photography from Emberton's Archives. His all-black motorcycle jacket, which is lined with pictures of Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen, is arguably the standout item.
His next collaboration was with Virgil Abloh the owner of OFF WHITE in 2016. It was a project between two up and coming high end streetwear brands that were both going from strength to strength, in terms of popularity and brand development. The collaboration called “glitter” contained garments that had been sewn vertically down the centre of the piece resulting in a contrasting piece of clothing that was split down the middle with different colours and font . One side was Off White. One side was MIDNIGHT STUDIOS. Both sides shared a similar subject of vintage Americana and collegiate imager. The T-shirts and hoodies developed were exclusive products that retailed between $90-$200 and they sold out instantly. They are now available to buy on ‘Grailed’, an online community marketplace for clothes for double the price.
Not bad for a 22 year old.