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11 mei 2024

Funkie 35 Years

Check out the Funkie 35 apparel!

Alright, let's rewind to '89 when things were kickin' off at 14 Korte Hoogstraat, Rotterdam – where Backyard is currently located. At the helm was Wilco. Early Funkie House days were like the eclectic shops of London, packed with merch from all sorts of alternative bands. Racks stacked with A to Z tour tees and 9 by 3 meter display cases loaded with pins, badges, and jewelry.

–“We also printed T-shirts and other items ourselves with our heat presses (we are still doing that for special in-store events). We had 3 presses in the shop. People could buy an item and have it printed by us. Often with a print of a band.”

The scene got real diverse, attracting folks from heavy metal to punk. Each with their own style of clothing. And as a result, there was an increasing demand for more special clothing.

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Back in the day, when Wilco gave Nike a shout to stock their trainers, Nike wasn't feeling it. They were like, "Hold up, this ain't a sports shop." Carhartt had a similar take; they didn't want to roll with Funkie House because it wasn't ticking the skate shop box. Levi's? They thought it wasn't a blue denim shop. But Wilco wasn't about to take no for an answer. Weekly calls, a bit of persistence, and voilà; Funkie House Streetwear came to life. Brands started making their way over to the quirky Rotterdam spot, one by one. People were starting to take notice, but what really counted? Finally, the crowd had a spot where they could snag all their gear in one hit.

“I also started doing a lot of styling. That was often for magazines, but also bands that came along, and later also for TV and film (I also helped on the Amsterdam shoot for Oceans 12) to make sure people got to know Funkie House.”

They weren't sitting behind desks, the Funkie House crew threw parties right out on the street, usually teaming up with the brands they had in the store. To amp up their visibility, they hooked up with different events, like Now & Wow, supplying gear for their crew.

–“And then there was the Funkie House Snow Trips, turning into this massive thing where a hundred people tagged along to France. Parties, snow jump contests, the whole deal. By organizing various events, we created a big community before social media existed”.

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The Funkie community grew, outgrowing the original store. In 2005 Funkie House found the perfect location in the old RET building, a leap from 250m2 to 750m2. At the old location Wilco opened a new concept Daily Rush. Besides a bigger store, Funkie House grew into a full-fledged brand; FUNKIE.

–”Our new spot was more than a shop; it had a vibe – the interior was decorated like a living room, a garden, and even a bathroom and bedroom upstairs. Exhibitions, performances, and brand showcases in the basement gave Funkie House a whole new concept.”

Renovations came and went, showing off our evolution with a 'natural' interior, built and designed by TCHAI, with recycled wood to reflect Funkie House´ affinity with sustainability and a big storefront sign designed by artist Lizer.

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Today, Funkie House is one of the biggest streetwear stores in the Netherlands, and we're proud we can be a home for people who are looking for streetwear and want to have a fun time shopping. Ofcourse we couldn't have done it without our loyal customers! We want to thank everyone who shopped at Funkie House for supporting us throughout the years. 💕

2024 is gonna be an exciting year! We will celebrate our 35th anniversary by doing exclusive collaborations all year round, teaming up with some of our favorite brands. We’re keeping the funk alive with Funkie Radio – our very own monthly in-store music event – and other special events to come!

Hope to see you around at Funkie House!

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