My Amsterdam: Filling Pieces

My Amsterdam: Filling Pieces

With the combination of forward-thinking design sitting somewhere between sportswear and fashion, and the laid back style which seems to flow through Amsterdam’s creative communities, footwear brand Filling Pieces have become one of the city’s finest exports. Brand manager Leroy gave us a run through of his favourite Amsterdam spots.

What’s the most exciting part of the city right now?

The most exciting part for me is still the centre – the 9 streets area. There’s a lot of amazing stores, restaurants and I think the vibe is really cool because it’s such a fun place to find curated stores and well-dressed people.

What makes Amsterdam street style unique?

Going back to the early days there was a lot of immigration. Amsterdam is such an amazing cultural melting pot and all these different cultures have their own ways of dressing. This is really reflected in the street culture and especially in the way people dress. You have African influences, Moroccan influences -a more North African way of dressing – and then you have a lot of Indonesians here, alongside many people from the Moluccans and Suriname. All these people dress in a certain way and this comes together in the street style of Amsterdam which is super amazing. Plus, we’re so close to Paris and London, alongside places in Italy and Scandinavia. All these different cities have an influence on how people dress here.

How do you feel the sneaker world has changed since you started Filling Pieces?

When we started we occupied a niche, this unique segment between high-end and streetwear. This has evolved to the stage where there are so many sneaker releases every week. It’s making the market saturated, but also we’re at a stage where trends come and go quickly. The whole sock sneaker hype and trend was popping for a year but now it’s all about bulky dad sneakers. Trends don’t last as long and that’s changed the market completely.

How has music culture played a part in what you do?

It’s played a very big part in the way that music always brings people together. You can be of a different ethnicity or come from a different part of the world, but if we have the same taste in music we can instantly get along. Music is the biggest connector of people besides love and that’s really reflected in clothing and footwear. Certain albums are different stylistically, like how every time Kanye used to drop an album he had a different style, art direction and overall feeling to his music. For me that was very inspirational, so music has a big impact on what we do.

Best secret Amsterdam spot?

There’s a lot of them, but I really like the Bijmer which is a suburb of Amsterdam. There’s a lot of culture there especially in the way people dress. Right now it’s a hidden spot where tourists never go. It’s really interesting to see how the people dress, the various restaurants and the different cultural influences that you see there. Amsterdam Oud-West is also very interesting. It used to be a no-go area 20-30 years ago for people living in the city centre, but now it’s changing with more young and upcoming designers or restaurants opening there. It really has this underground feel which is cool.

Favourite place to eat in the city?

It’s hard, depends on the food. I really like Bo Nam which is an eclectic Vietnamese kitchen. The food and vibe is really amazing, if you want to listen to hip hop and eat some Vietnamese food this is the spot to go to. I really like Mook Pancakes for breakfast, they have amazing pancakes. Finally, Mr Porter because I love a good steak. It’s in the W Hotel so it’s where you can have amazing food in a more upscale environment.

What would you do as mayor for the day?

It’s a very good question. I think I would do something to connect people with each other. I would give more time to the people that actually really do something for the city, and focus efforts on them. The cool thing about Amsterdam is that it’s a very mixed city. You could be sitting in a restaurant next to suits but also young creatives or tourists with the same state of mind.

People from the corporate industry don’t always recognise what’s happening when it comes to younger designers or smaller entrepreneurs and businesses within this field. So I’d probably host a day where different people could actually connect and find out more about both worlds. It would be good for the city.

What are your future plans for Filling Pieces?

We just started with ready-to-wear which is really amazing and our future plan is to build Filling Pieces footwear brand into an international fashion brand that is active in more segments than just footwear. Having our own retail is one of our next goals and dreams so hopefully we can get that started soon.

Shop Filling Pieces online now at Tessuti.

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