Untamed, founded by Yusuf Shakirov, combines the community of cars with the community of streetwear through one cohesive brand. By combining both of his interests Yusuf has created his own following known as TeamUntamed. Underline talks to Yusuf about his brand, motivations and aspirations.
How did Untamed get started and why did you start it? Every time I looked into my closet I would tell myself, “Wouldn’t it be cool to have your own clothing brand ?” I thought about something that is universal, any age could wear it. I didn’t know anything about business but I simply from set up a website to shipped out orders. I spent a lot of time researching and teaching myself on strategies that I could use. On July 18th, 2015 I started Untamed, as well as my Untamed family with aggressive cars and wished for the best. I started making stickers knowing it would be a great platform to start at and learned new ways of promoting. It made me get a feel for what a “company” is like as I took in orders and shipped them. As I got more comfortable I started moving into making shirts and hoodies.
Untamed, why did you choose it and what’s its meaning?
Being that I was 16 when I started my brand, Untamed seemed to fit my generation. There are so many youngsters that love to misbehave and do what they want. Although, Untamed can have multiple meanings behind it. Be free and live your life the way you want to live it. It also seemed to fit great in the car community as well. Having a very nice fitment or a car in general that just looks wild is “Untamed”.
What is the main motivation behind your brand?
The main motivation is to be a World Champ. Don’t give up on something that isn’t going well, keep pushing until you surpass your goal. Everything is going to be ‘OK’ in the end. If it isn’t, then it’s not the end.
Your brand is known for creative sticker collection, where does the creativity behind the unique stickers come from?
A lot of thinking goes into the stickers, every design for Untamed was created by me. Step one is to open up SoundCloud and listen to some Future. Listening to good music always gives me great and clean ideas. I start working with my template I have in PhotoShop for my stickers. Then I add whatever comes to my mind, examples are Japanese words, random shapes and etc. When I think I have thrown out all of my vision into the sticker design, I start to remove some things to keep it “clean”. I learned that less is more.
Is there anyone within the apparel industry or anywhere else that inspires you and your brand?
Nike is a huge brand that inspires me. Their type of clothing and style is very clean. My favorites from Nike are the Tech Fleece and Flyknit Racers as they’re so simple. As I mentioned before “less is more” and that’s what Nike knows how to do. Cartoons also inspire me, I have always been attached to watching them since I was a little kid.
Personally, what are you more passionate about streetwear or cars?
Cars of course, because I have been a fan of them since I was little. I used to have a crazy hot wheels collection until I had to give them away because we were moving. Every time we went on a road trip I would always search for “HellaFlush” or “JDM” cars. After years passed my big brother, Rammi, purchased his first car, a 2013 Honda Civic SI. He started doing mods to it which sparked me to start saving up for my future car. I’ve always wanted an Estoril Blue E36 M3. After saving up for a few years and searching for a clean E36 I was finally able to find my dream car. Once I had purchased it, it had to be turned into an Untamed car.
Being such a young creator, what would you say were the most difficult hurdles to overcome while developing your brand?
My main struggle was school, Untamed would always distract me from my education. Every day, I would be going through stress with homework, getting ready for tests, wrestling and Untamed. Another thing that I was always worried about was how many sales I would get. It was always way lower than what I expected which created stress thinking about what I was doing wrong. I didn’t give up, that’s not what a World Champ does. I kept hustling (still am) and never looked back.
Is there any potential for Untamed to integrate cut n’ sew into its clothing?
Possibly in the future, but as of now no, just financially not possible. I would have to reach out to many companies and try out their garments to make them special for Untamed.
In the future, do you see yourself continuing to work on Untamed, creating a new brand or just moving away from streetwear in general?
Absolutely, I will be working on Untamed, I think it has potential from what’s happened so far.
Any collaborations, new releases or other plans for the future?
No collaborations as of now, but if Nike wants to collaborate let’s just do it. But, I am working on a new release, it will be a Black Untamed 6 Panel hat with glow in the dark stitching.
If you’re interested some Untamed clothing, check out their site