SiD The Gent: A Chicago Creative Not To Be Slept On
By: CeCe Marie
New York or LA usually come to mind when you think of a hub for fashion, however Chicago has been making a name for itself with a supportive community of talented individuals who create work based off of their lives, experiences, and the culture of the city.
When I first started Coffee, Tea or Tequila I wanted to unlock stories about creatives in Chicago who are making waves. The mission is to have intimate conversations that satisfy the soul. Someone who I’ve been watching grow their platform over the past couple of years is SiD The Gent. Not only is Sid a dope creative and entrepreneur in the city, but he knows how to start a conversation through his own banding. Over the past five years Sid has went hard with his Fli Nation team creating events through out the city with their social club. Last year they decided to kick it up a notch, taking it to the next level with their Fake Decent merchandise that celebrates Chicago culture.
In honor of #HeHustleMonday and #MakeMoneyMonday get to know SiD The Gent and his two emerging brands Fli Nation and Fake Decent. Don’t sleep on the movement, get in tune and keep your eyes open for what they got coming next cause #HeWorkin.
1. Who is SiD The Gent? Tell me about yourself as a Vibes Administrator?
Uncle Tommy son haha, just at kid from the south side. Funny thing is both came from jokes, in school my homies joked about how laid back I was and they gave me the name “Sid the gent”. The other just came from always knowing what’s going on in the city and some of the hidden gems as well.
2. Can you tell me more about your two brands Fli Nation and Fake Decent?
We started the FLi Nation brand a little over 5 years ago, in the beginning it was mostly driven in nightlife. We rocked on some of the more popular events going during that time in partnership with others as well. Looking to the future a bit we moved away from doing the overly popular events and focused on creating our own programming and this helped us to also move the brand forward in the street wear side of things. The Fake Decent brand is a product of all of those lessons we learned early on combined with this new approach to events that we created. We noticed it was time for something a little different and things just lined up perfectly and now we have a store after dropping the first hoodies in January of this year. We are truly blessed.
3. Where do the names Fli Nation and Fake Decent come from?
With FLi Nation we wanted to create our own world a bit, almost like a social club in sorts. Provide some dope events then follow that up with a clean thought through product on the merchandise side of things. With “Fake Decent” we’re celebrating Chicago culture while showing the influence outside of the city. We’re having fun with the Fake Decent brand and we have some dope things happening really soon, definitely ready to push the envelope a bit.
4. What are your top things in Chicago that you think are Fake Decent?
Ahhhhhh! There’s a bunch the we think is Fake Decent in the city and we’re going to start letting everyone know what’s Fake Decent very very very soon.
5. You just had the grand opening of your Fake Decent location. What was the vibe like and how was the experience for you as an entrepreneur?
The vibe was dope, we had some of family and closest friends pull up to celebrate the progression of the brand. We also had a ton of people that I didn’t even realize who follow or keep up with the brand stop by and shop with us. Having the location in Bronzeville now gives us an opportunity to centralize some of the energy to one location rather than just the events we do around the city.
6. What can we expect from you and your brands for the rest of 2018?
More collaboration, looking to hit up DC, LA, Detroit, NYC and Florida with a few pop events and pop up shops. We also have a few dope collabs lined up for the 3rd and 4th quarter here in the city. Then another big drop in December.
7. As an entrepreneur and a creative how do you stay motivated?
Seeing how people respond to the things we create, and watching the conversation it starts. I remember shortly after we dropped the Fake Decent hoodie everywhere I wore the hoodie it sparked a conversation from kids up to grand parents, that’s when I realized early that we had something a little bigger than just Chicago culture. Also seeing others who have success, that gives me some of the energy to keep pushing.
8. Your branding is always on point and catches my attention. How do you come up with some of your marketing and promotional ideas?
Hmmm, that might cost ya haha. We like to approach each idea as its separate brand, from the concept, to the details to the rollout and the product. We have carved out and created our own little niche inside of a market, and we have started a ton of conversation with some of the things we’ve done. Which is also a part of the goal. At the very end of the day we have so much fun with it, we’re truly having a ball.
9. Who are some creatives or entrepreneurs that you look up to?
A lot of the OGs here in the streetwear scene Cory and Diego with Leaders, Dave Jeff, Zo, and a lot of our peers out here getting busy. We got a lot of talent here in the city. Even my homies inspire me. On a larger scale, Jay Z and Diddy.
10. Who is your dream person that you want to see wearing the Fake Decent brand and why?
My teenage son… I also dont have any kids yet and it would mean that we’re still out here creating and get busy for years to come.
11. Are you coffee, tea or tequila? Why?
Coffee and tequila… A mixture of business and party
Website to shop: https://www.weshopfli.com/shop
Store Location & Hours: