Check out this Vancouver-based fashion line — Red Dragon Apparel (RDS)! Designed by Dave Boyce in 1998, it originated as a skateboarding line and has expanded to include a women’s line along with basics and versatile pieces. Dave tells me that RDS was actually something completely different before it turned into a fashion label. “It was something we started in 1988, myself and a few other young men. We were bored and Vancouver has a lot of rain so once it rained we didn’t know what to do with ourselves.” It was actually a little joke they kept to themselves. “We got up to mischief and blamed it off on ‘red dragons’ — a factitious gang that we made up.”
Dave spends most of his days walking around the city and people watching to gain inspiration for his line. “I look for that one person that stands out over and above everyone else.'”
Dave says, “I was dumber than i was smart — anything seemed possible to me. starting a clothing line was logical to me.” At age seventeen he knew that the skateboard industry was at a growing peak and wanted to make something happen.
Known as ‘Sluggo’s Little Brother’ (SLB), he took a different approach with his bigger brother Rob ‘Sluggo’ Boyce’s skateboarding fame. “I didn’t want to give up on skateboarding. The only way to not give up is to still be a part of industry.”
Can you believe that ‘Sluggo’ was actually named after a Canadian comic book called ‘Nancy?’ Apparently Rob looked like her boyfriend! RDS is now expanding a huge array of accessories like soap on a rope and house keys, water bottles and ice trays with the RDS logo.
Background: The Red Dragons was an underground skate crew composed of Colin McKay, Rob “Sluggo” Boyce, and Moses Itkonen in the late 80s. After skipping classes to earn salaries as professional skateboarders, the men opened their first skateshop in 1996, RDS Skate Supply. Colin and Sluggo began a distribution house, Centre Distribution, in 1997, and Moses created the Red Dragon Apparel line in 1998.
Check out Red Dragon Apparel online at www.reddragonapparel.com.