Corbin Dahl and Brennan Williams
A full-size pool table and Schlitz neon sign in the window doesn’t exactly scream fashion, but Lucky Lefty’s, a new Midtown streetwear boutique, is bringing all the important brands to Sacramento. Co-owners Corbin Dahl and Brennan Williams carefully select the best T-shirts, hoodies, hats, denim and outerwear from Asia, Europe and the United States. They stock classics like A.P.C. alongside new lines like Play Cloths, designed by rap duo Clipse. In addition to retail, the partners create original designs and host events to bring together the skateboard, fixed-gear bicycle, music and art community. Visit Lucky Lefty’s at 1924 16th Street.
Who’s behind the store?Dahl: We started out with four partners, and everything is split equally. I do all the graphics, and Brennan does the buying and others do accounting. As far as working at the shop, we all split it up.
When did you officially open?Dahl: The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday.
How do you explain the store to people who don’t know about it?Williams: There are a lot of exclusives from the best streetwear brands from around the world, and if that’s what you’re into, then there should be something for you. At the same time, a lot of the products have really high-quality construction and design, so you might be into that aspect of it, too.
Dahl: The brands have a lot of subculture influences, and people spend more time on the designs and a lot of thought goes into it, not just some PacSun logo on a tee. You’ll get a vibe from a certain piece and feel a connection.
How do you find the brands that you sell?Williams: There are influences from skateboarding and the fixed-gear stuff recently. Also, the Internet allows you to find out about new brands from around the world. Every brand here is a brand that we like. We thought that Sacramento is a big city and we wanted to bring these brands here so that people wouldn’t have to go to the Bay Area or Los Angeles or New York just to get them.
Dahl: A lot of the people behind the labels we carry are pulling from the same influences as us, whether it’s skateboarding, music or art. If an artist works with a certain brand, then I’ll find out about it. Through your interests you’ll find stuff you like.
What is the role of the store?Dahl: We try to educate about the products and the overall culture; that’s why we throw events that will get Sacramento more involved in what we’re interested in. [The recent Macaframa film screening drew more than 700 people to the Crest.]
Williams: It’s about introducing culture and that goes both ways. We want to expose people to brands from Tokyo, South Korea, New York and Hawaii. At the same time, we want those people to know about Sacramento through our shop. Introducing cultures to each other is big for me.
Do you have any past retail experience?Dahl: I’ve been screen printing for over three years, and that’s where I got a lot of experience with graphics. I started out after high school by making a fake business and got into the Magic trade show with some of my partners. I was excited about it and I always wanted to open a store. It’s always been something we wanted to do, but I’ve never owned a shop before.
What are your retail influences?Williams: The actual build-out of the store has one of each design out, not tons of racks everywhere, flooded with shirts, and we try to keep it a clean and a memorable shopping experience. That’s the thing about Tokyo; I remember everything about each store because they have concepts and clean design.
Dahl: A big inspiration was seeing Eddie and Gabe open up FTC. Doing that for Sac was big to progress street culture.
What are your upcoming plans?Williams: We did a couple of our own designs for our opening and those sold out. We’ll definitely be doing some of our own stuff that people should look out for in the near future.
Would you ever pick up a line just for sales?Williams: That’s a common dilemma, but our motto has been to present the things we like. There are some things that would pay the rent but if it’s not something I like, then I don’t want buy it. I don’t want to feel like I’m cheating anyone. If it’s good quality, then we’ll sign off on it.
What new brands are you carrying for spring?Williams: Play Cloths by Clipse, Benny Gold, A.P.C. from France, Dave’s Quality Meat from New York and False from Singapore.
How did you come up with the name Lucky Lefty’s?Williams: That’s the toughest question of all. We let people come to their own conclusions. It could mean different things to different people. It means several things to us.
Dahl: We have people coming in that think it’s a bar or a left-handed store. We let people use their imaginations.