These days, online sellers populate too many pages on social networking sites like Facebook and Multiply. Indeed, selling goods online has become one of the easiest options for newbie entrepreneurs as Overhead and Marketing costs are kept to a minimum. However, the online selling industry has become a marketplace that is even more congested and chaotic than a real-life market.
Online (selling) competition is cut-throat and several sellers sell the same products at virtually the same rate. To really stand out in a sea of generic online stores, one has to cater to an un-served niche market; and that is exactly what Ken Quiratman has done with his brainchild—one of the most popular Davao-based online stores—Gravefresh.
We got to interview the Owner/Founder/Creative Director, Mr. Quiratman, about the creation, the passion, and the inspiration behind the brand.
CP: First of all, where did you get the name?
KQ: Gravefresh is a combination of two of the fields I am interested in. Grave depicts the “Metal” side while Fresh depicts the “Reggae, Hip-hop, Urban” side.
CP: So, what is Gravefresh?
KQ: It is an all-original Davao-made supreme brand. It showcases what Davao has to offer and creates a distinct and unique approach by bringing international trends to our market. We aim to bring Davao to the international scene. Gravefresh focuses on different (underground) lifestyles such as skate, music, and tattoo. Basically, we showcase unique designs that other brands do not offer.
CP: Why did you decide to start Gravefresh?
KQ: I was into digital designing before I started Gravefresh. I joined some online contests and did some collaboration work. I was very inspired by international artists who also started their own brand. Also, when Cebu brands emerged like Product of Uranus and Nick Automatic I realized that it was also possible to do it here in the Philippines. I also really wanted to wear clothes that were unlike those that you’d see in malls. I used to find it difficult to look for clothes that I really liked so I decided to make my own designs.
CP: So who makes your designs and how do you come up with them?
KQ: I make most of the designs. We have one release that is a collaboration between I Am Ink Tattoo Studio and myself. Basically, I create designs based on my mood and current mindset. I draft them by hand and then see how they translate on clothes.
Two of Gravefresh's best sellers: Stay Levy and High Five
CP: Who is the typical Gravefresh man? Who is your target market?
KQ: We target enthusiasts of music, skate culture, hip-hop culture, and artists.
CP: Where are your orders usually from?
KQ: Usually we get orders from Manila and other parts of Luzon. We also get a lot here from Davao and some from Cebu.
CP: Is Gravefresh just a clothing brand or do you have any other products?
KQ: We sell clothes but is not our only focus. We are starting to organize events specifically for the purpose of supporting the local music scene. Soon, we will reveal and feature more fresh products.
CP: So how do these events work with your clothing line? Are these events mainly for promotions?
KQ: Yes, we promote our brand during the events but it is not just about promotions. It has become a way for Gravefresh to support the local scene. For us, it is not just about business, it’s more about the brotherhood.
CP: What differentiates Gravefresh from other online brands?
KQ: We sell all-original designs in limited quantities. We also organize events unlike most online sellers.
CP: Would you encourage other young people to follow your footsteps and open an online shop?
KQ: Yes. If they decide to start an online shop they must be original and innovative. It would also be good if they supported the local scene and local products.