Yabai Magazine | JIMOTO : The Interview with Japanese Skate Shop FABRIC

Yabai Magazine | JIMOTO : The Interview with Japanese Skate Shop FABRIC


When I was a kid, I saw the movie “Back to the Future” and in that movie the main character rides a skateboard. When I saw that I soon went out and bought a skateboard. Watching that movie is what first got me into skateboarding. Since then I have became obsessed and for years on I continued skating and never stopped thinking about skating. As I continued living like this I naturally ended up opening my own skateshop. The name Fabric… sometimes we have foreign customers mistake us for an actual fabric store, it’s a word that seems unrelated to skateboarding, but a skateboard is, depending on how someone uses it, something that can be used in a lot of different ways. Based on that concept our shop sell those materials, and much like clothing it’s something that people carry and is always on them. Rather than use a word like “material”, which has a bit of a rougher image, the word “Fabric” is a bit softer. In fabric-making, each thread ties in and comes together, and here we have all sorts of people that connect and tie in to build one scene together, so it has that meaning as well. When we make our original products, I think about what I would personally like to see made in a product. When I make a deck, I might think that I want to change this, or that, and rather than wait for that kind of product to come out, I’ll usually take it on myself to add or take away those changes. With skateboarding and skateboarding in America, they have a huge scene down there, with tons of skaters. Here in Yokohama… American’s probably see it as… I guess one of those super countryside, far-east places off to the side of a big city. I guess from the skate community’s point of view it’s like the countryside within the countryside. If I were to make a comparrison, it’s kind of weird, but like the delinquents in the countryside, like what you would see in comics, where there are all these punk guys hanging around. It’s kind of like that. Yokohama skaters will often look at videos and get information from he states, based off of that have an image of what skateboarding is and study it all very thoroughly. Because of that there are even some skaters around here that are completely ahead of the curb, because they think the level they have to live up to is higher than what it actually is so sometimes we get some truly unbelievable skaters here. Countryside delinquents and unbelievable skaters. This is the kind of unique city that Yokohama is. Here in Yokohama we didn’t have a skateshop so when I was going to open one I wanted it to be here in my hometown and work with skateboards. As for our apparel, we make it, actually my wife knits it and does the embroidery by hand without a machine. It takes more time, but things like this patch it’s all done by hand using thread and needle. Everything is hand made so along with our original Fabric products, were also able to do custom orders here, which is something I don’t think you will really find elsewhere. When I meet people at the park, I think about how much fun we can have skating together, or what that person For those who want to get into skateboarding, I think everyone has their own idea of what a skater is, but basically for those who are interested to try skating, I say just go out and do it. Of course you won’t know until you try. In the beginning just don’t think too much, do what you want to do, and just go skate. Basically when you first start, as long as you keep the feeling of interest and excitement alive, before you know it, the people around you will just naturally start to see you as a skateboarder. There was a skateshop in Gifu prefecture, that was owned by a friend of mine who passed away, and he would give skaters who came to the park this pamphlet about how to improve their skating. It had a lot of helpful information about how to continue having fun on your skateboard as you got older, such as how important it is to keep practicing the basics and we keep a copy framed in our shop for our customers to take a look at. If I didn’t have skateboarding… When I was in elementary school, I liked to go fishing, so I think I’d probably be fishing. Going forward… since we opened we have always been the skateshop of the skater, by the skater, for the skater, which is how we have run things around here, and also just keep it real. Just to continue with that stance and move forward.

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