We caught up with artist duo Coco and Breezy after they hosted a DJ set at our new Dr. Martens Herald Square, NYC opening party, to share more about their exciting career, and of course their relationship with Doc’s. Read on to find out more…
Tell us a little about how you went from teenagers living in the Midwest to the multi-faceted NYC entrepreneurs of the Coco and Breezy brand.
We grew up in the suburbs of Minnesota. We had amazing parents that really encouraged us to be true to who we are and to express our individuality to the fullest. We were bullied as kids. People didn’t understand us or they thought we were “weird.” We used to wear sunglasses to block our eyes from making eye contact with the people that stared and laughed at us; eventually we started creating and customising our own eye-wear.
Back in the MySpace days, we had fans around the world and so we thought ‘people in Minnesota don’t understand us, let’s move to NYC.’ We were 19 years old in 2009 and extremely fearless! We quit our jobs, sold our car, and moved to NY with less than $1000. After years of running and growing our eye-wear business, we then started to DJ. Music has always inspired our creative process. We used to be extremely shy but DJ’ing has put us on a different frequency to be more social and express ourselves. We love to invite people into our world through music. We have also directed some really awesome music videos for Disney, Lego, L2M, Hyperlinked, Selita Ebanks, Megan Vice and more.
You’ve collaborated a lot, if you could collaborate with anyone alive, dead or fictional, who would it be and what project would you work on?
Honestly, it would be Dr. Martens! We aren’t just saying this because we are doing this interview, lol. We’ve been huge fans since we were in middle school. We couldn’t afford them in middle school! We were so excited when we finally got our first real pair of Dr. Martens. It would be epic to create a collection, do the creative direction behind the campaign, and DJ the launch event!
How long have you lived in New York? What are your favourite things about living in NYC?
We have lived here for almost 8 years – it sounds crazy saying that. Time has flown by so fast! Our favorite things about living in NYC is that inspiration and opportunities are endless. You can never say you’re bored in NYC. There is always something to do. It has also given us a tough skin and a level of work ethic to just go for it! We have become more fearless.
What advice would you give to a visitor who wants to experience the city like a real New Yorker?
We would say to be open minded. To have a real New Yorker experience, you have to be open to new things. You have to get on public transportation, and walk past garbage on the street without complaining. Appreciate every experience because there is so much you can do in NYC.
You’ve designed eye-wear for some big names: Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj and most notably, Prince. Have you ever been star-struck meeting a celebrity?
We haven’t been star-struck meeting anyone because they have made us feel extremely welcomed. Prince was very lovely to us, and we had the honor to spend a lot of amazing time with him. He asked to meet our parents, so we brought our mom to meet him and she was super star-struck!
Breezy, what’s something most people don’t know about Coco? Coco, what’s something most people don’t know about Breezy?
Breezy: Coco is extremely motherly and more on the safe side of things. It’s a great balance.
Coco: Breezy makes more crazy ideas, more logical ones.
You both have so many talents, music, fashion, design, dance. Do either of you have any hidden talents?
We are great cooks!! We love cooking amazing vegetarian food.
Do you have a summer song for 2017 yet? What is it?
Breeze’s track: Lil Uzi – 1.5 Xo Tour Llif3
Coco’s track: Ed Sheeran – Shape of You
You share your lives daily on Instagram, how has social media helped launch Coco and Breezy?
Social media has been a huge help when launching our brand. We have been extremely transparent of our journey since we started our brand. We have created brand equity which is the emotional connection we give our supporters and consumers. We want to feel relatable and more importantly inspire everyone.
Do you remember your first pair of Dr. Martens?
We got them in middle school. They were the 1460 brown boots. Since we couldn’t afford them during that time, one of our friends gave us a pair of hers. We were so excited!
What’s next for Coco and Breezy?
A lot. We are launching an optical eye-wear line in September, and we’re growing our eye-wear collections with more styles at affordable prices. We have some really amazing DJ projects coming up that we are also excited about. We’re working very close with kids too. We are on a kid’s TV show called Wonderama and our goal is to really inspire the youth! And this is only a bit of what we have coming up. We are just excited for life. We want to continue to be fearless and be a positive example to our peers.