The Young and Lazy skate team pair Converse One Stars with their SS18 collection
By Luke Doman
The Young and Lazy skate team came into being around three years ago after meeting at a shitty parking lot with a lot of heart, Salesians. As a skater inspired by stylistic movements within skating, Y&L founder and director, Anees Petersen, had been toying with forming his own skate team for a while.
There was of course the fear that because most of the homies weren’t super technical or, like, intensely gnarly, the team may not be accepted as a thing. But because of brands like Supreme and the impact of skate movies like Cherry, and the subsequent William Strobeck films, had on skateboarding, as well as the homies' own personal styles, Anees came to understand that there was a space for something a little different.
The result was something with a focus on style and less concern for being the best. Most of the Condor Boys, as we referred to ourselves, were without a job or any other responsibilities, so we could pretty much skate all day and do whatever we wanted to do at night. It was mainly making funny little Instagram clips, or whatever. But dudes were responding to the random things we put out and the OGs started to warm up a little.
At some point, Anees started to hook us up a little more formally – us being Manie Fagodien, Dennis Collins, Ismaeel Solomons, Luke ‘Foetus’ Stulinski and myself, and we started taking things a bit more seriously.
Anees had his camera and we’d put on the gear with the deliberate mission to make some images that we would then package as lookbooks or editorials. This approach formed the basis of how we create content, and it was through these missions that we learned to believe in our abilities. On a personal level, it was watching Anees and assisting in these situations where I got the confidence to start experimenting with cameras and styling.
Today our team has some new faces – Justus Kotze, Josh ‘Spice’ Chisholm, who has just come back from a competition in Barcelona, and Ryan Naidoo, are all heavy hitters who’ve made names for themselves in the local skate context. We’ve also added two more Salesians rats to the team, whose personal styles and philosophies line up with ours perfectly.
Niyaaz Dramat is a part of our family, the little brother super amped on skating with a natural style and a ridiculously fast progression rate. He’s also the dude lined up to run the skate side of things eventually.
Iviwe Yekani is someone we’d noticed for years. Its funny how, when hanging out at Salesian, you see so many generations of kids turn into pimply teens, then into full-blown, grown-ass people. Iviwe was no exception, and as soon as the homie became more powerful in his body, he started to stand out with his style and tricks becoming more refined.
As for Converse, it’s a brand that’s had a presence since the beginning, and is just classic, man. Whether All Stars or One Stars, the look is always iconic. Blue jeans or chinos, a plain-white or black tee, and a pair of Cons, will always transcend any trend.
The best thing about the new iterations is that the technology offers the cushioning and support you need as a skater, even when the specific shoe falls outside of the brand’s skate selection. The new mids are a perfect example, with the cushioned ankle providing even further support and protection. The new sole is reminiscent of the 70s soul we’ve seen making a comeback on the Chuck Taylor, something that’s appealing to us as it gives the shoe a heritage feel and speaks directly to Young and Lazy’s movement to respect and learning from heritage, both inside and outside of clothing culture.
It also speaks directly to the strong influence that workwear has on the brand. The idea of skating in a shoe that is not necessarily designed for skating, but is very well suited, has always been appealing as it gives one the sense of the multifaceted nature of people – nobody is just a skater, people wear many hats, it's pretty cool when one shoes suits all of them.