We at DEFT believe the story behind a product is as important as the product itself. The story of the climb, struggle and inspirations. For this one, let’s talk about Aliff, the founder of Vagrant, a brand that is making waves in the local underground cycling scene. A brand that makes people wonder, who are they? Who’s the person behind it.
We first met Aliff in a coffee shop in the centre of KL, quiet at first yet very observant. Exchanging ideas and sharing stories, trying to pave our path in this small yet tight community. As we got deeper into the conversation, we learnt that he started his career as a photojournalist, working his way up with a local news station, earning bucks by the day. Tough as it gets he said, but it changed how he viewed the world. Many years later, with experience under his belt and a tad wiser with his work and mind, he would be in Europe to have his art displayed, only to be halted by the Covid pandemic. The never ending mind games of ‘what ifs’.
Aliff started Vagrant way back in 2015, out of his passion for cycling and its culture. Initially with musette bags, before moving to a variety of pouches, handle bar bags, cycling caps and much more, as he does plenty of custom work for his ever increasing clientele. And with the international borders closed, making the most of those talented hands, he now gives his full devotion to developing Vagrant.
The process of his work would begin with him sketching the designs whilst selecting the appropriate template, before cycling into the busy streets of KL. Heading into textile shops and handpicking the perfect materials to do justice to his designs. Not with a car nor on a motorcycle, but on his bicycle, shoving all the weight down his bag. He has the choice, but doesn’t make it an option. He then heads home to sew his products on his mother’s sewing machine that’s probably as old as he is. A routine he thoroughly enjoys to say the least.
Fast forward few month from our initial meet up, we’re proud to be collaborating with Vagrant for the launch of our first cycling cap and to be part of their uprising journey in the growing local cycling scene. We can only hope to be as committed and talented as they are.
We believe they are plenty more incredible stories out there when it comes to our local brands, just waiting to be unfolded. Champion the locals.