Freecity, show room.
Nina Garduno started FREECITY in 2001 after a visit to Christiania, a freewheeling hippy enclave in Copenhagen. This trip to what she describes as a “free city” within a city—a place that felt lawless and free—got Garduno thinking about other places she’d been that had the same feeling. Tassajara in Northern California, the Earthship community in New Mexico, Marfa, Texas—all places where like-minded people were living an alternative lifestyle.
“Instead of moving to a place like that, I wanted to live that feeling in Los Angeles. So I made my first FREECITY t-shirt to tag myself as having a “free city” spirit,” says Garduno.
Now ten years into the FREECITY brand and coming off a successful stint in Malibu, Garduno has relocated the FREECITY store to Hollywood and expanded the concept to embrace the supermät ethos.
Much in the way that an old school Laundromat united a neighborhood and provided communal space, the supermät brings together disparate things from a neighborhood and allows them to flourish under one roof.
In addition to the printed garments that FREECITY is known for, the supershop supermät features a range of products from bicycles to bread. Garduno has contracted with local artisans to bring a fresh mix of merchandise to the store—hand-worked loaves of bread from Breadbar, hand-pressed almond milk and electrolyte lemonade from Life Food Organic, raw vegan “ice cream” from Kind Kreme, and bicycles from Mission SF, Tokyo Bike and the FREECITY workshop—all for sale at the supershop supermät along with the eclectic mix of clothing, accessories, records, and posters that shoppers have come to rely on from FREECITY.
Garduno explains the FREECITY aesthetic, “I don’t consider myself a designer. I make simple things that aren’t simply made. I make clothes that feel like something you’ve known forever. It’s all very utilitarian, but it has a certain fit. We labor over everything we do—the silk screens, the colors, the patches, the words we use, how we wash the clothes, the way everything smells.”
Most things in Los Angeles can be compared to a car and FREECITY supershop supermät is no exception. If it were a car, the supermät would be a Go-Kart—a handcrafted, psychedelic, joyride—sure to make getting there more than half the fun.