The Skinnys are a Los Angeles based creative/design duo and apparel brand that encourages everyone to be chic and comfortable in themselves regardless of skin tone, sexuality or size. “Everyone always asks where we came up with the name ‘THE SKINNYS’ for our partnership,” co-founder Rolland Ryan explains. “In truth, it’s all about turning lemons into lemonade. When Justin and I were kids we heard over and over, despite the fact he’s from Los Angeles and I’m from Monroe, Louisiana, that we were “too skinny” or to “eat more” by family, friends and even, occasionally, strangers on the street!”
“Informed by a spirit,” says Justin Cooper, “of taking something many in the African-American community take as a negative, ‘being skinny,’ and making that into a call to action for acceptance and body positivity for people of all shapes and sizes, we’ve created a brand focused on uplifting individuals and passing on our hard fought confidence and self-acceptance.”
“Nowadays, nearly everyone experiences prejudice,” Ryan continues, “and is exposed to so much negative feedback simply because of how they look. We want to fight against that, while still being stylish and having a sense of humor - especially for younger people who deal with so much darkness on Social Media.”
Established in 2013 with their instantly iconic and subtly subversive signature “Givenchic” t-shirt, THE SKINNYS have, over the past half decade, created an iconoclastic design vocabulary with a foundation of gender neutral American sportswear classics such as t-shirts and sweatshirts. “Our celebrity clients, top stylists, consumers and brand ambassadors often tell us that when they wear something emblazoned with the word ‘SKINNY’ it gives them an ‘I’m on top of the world’ feeling’,” explains Cooper. “Building people’s confidence has been the most rewarding and inspiring part of bringing our brand to life.”
As the brand has caught fire both IRL and URL, THE SKINNYS have added Creative Direction services to their offerings. “We love,” says Ryan, “collaborating with clients and brand partners seeking to create a new, elevated take on a ‘West Coast’ style of design and imagery.”
THE SKINNYS evoke a feeling of shopping in Beverly Hills, having lunch in the Hollywood Hills and relaxing on the beach in Malibu. No matter who you are, who you know or where you live, you too can be “SKINNY” in L.A.