#10: Tee Dealer Patrick Matamoros Explains How He Puts Tees in the Hands of Kanye West, Jerry Lorenzo and Frank Ocean
Patrick Matamoros has made a career out of buying and selling old tees, but if you ask him, it’s grander than that. “Life is about references and collecting your own stories,” he says. “I look for things that will trigger something in other people—I’m not looking for a Tupac shirt, I’m looking for a feeling.” By trusting his instincts and taste, Matamoros has made it from the Lower East Side Flea Market to projects like CHAPEL and Saint Luis, all while accruing a roster of A-list clientele that includes Fear of God’s Jerry Lorenzo and Kanye West.
On this episode of HYPEBEAST Radio, Patrick explains how he met West and inadvertently came to play a significant role in the resurgence of old band merch as fashion fetish item. He also explains why his work with Lorenzo on Chapel of God was like “peanut butter and jelly” and speaks on why he didn’t respect Vetements’ infamous flip of a vintage Snoop Dogg shirt.
Patrick also explains why the word ‘distressed’ isn’ a big enough word to describe what he does (note: he doesn’t like the term ‘vintage’ much either). “If I’m not in danger of utterly and completely destroying the shirt and making it go away,” he asks, “then where’s the fun?” He continues, “Distressing is safe. What I do isn’t safe. I’ve destroyed tees where I could sell it for a grand, two grand. Distressed just isn’t enough.”
You can listen to Matamoros’ story above.