Creative Director and Folk Founder Cathal McAteer spent an incremental career in retail before becoming master and creator of the brand. Born and raised in Cumbernauld, about 14 miles from Glasgow, McAteer has always had more than a passing interest in fashion, that and football. He played semi-pro until the age of nineteen and until he was released it was a pretty care free life, not that much has changed. Not being the most eager of scholars, and with pretty laid back parents he was happy ticking along with enough money to buy shoes. A good pair of shoes is of most importance you understand? And apparently well worth saving up for even as a 12 year old milk boy. There is still a bit of drive and determination to highlight before we get to the present day. At the age of 20, so McAteer tells it, in an epiphenomena moment decided he had to break free from Cumbernauld and head south to the big smoke if he was to get anywhere. This was in 1993 and Kilburn, London was now his home, a place he resides in still today although the area has changed somewhat. In his own words the area has changed vast amounts from the ‘shell suits and pit-bulls of 93', so much so that he jokingly mused that he wouldn't go to neighbouring Queens Park to play football any more in case the hoi oligoi were to turn up their noses in something reminiscent of a Dickensian ploy. In the following years Cathal McAteer ‘Worked his balls off’ to get somewhere in retail with the aim of one day setting up shop, if you will excuse the pun, for himself. He was lucky enough to have a nurturing arm wrapped around him, supporting his growth from Saturday worker to manager, to eventual co-buyer. I think luck is all relative though; people who are gifted good luck can be given few chances but ultimately work damn hard and take the first opportunity with both hands. Those with bad luck well you can give them ten and you will get ten excuses. So in 2001 Folk was fresh and ready to go, a label that without sounding purposely insular, became the unbranded brand. Having a label on the outside of the clothing didn't sit well as the intricacies in deciding on button and thread, a real labour of love. Well why purposely interrupt this cacophony of seam by unnecessary and garish branding when the timing, capture and release has been so well conceived. Look at the striped under garm knit, it is relevant but still stands out from common ground other brands are happy to sit in. With the vim and pomp aside McAteer is just ‘in the business of selling clothes in a popular way’ and while the archetypal British eccentricity is present the ideal is not to bow to the moment; McAteer does appreciate it is important to be aware of trends, nonetheless. The brand has grown to having four stores in four cities including Munich and Amsterdam, a route that converges on a well travelled McAteer. He quotes Verona as having a special place with him currently, but then again there never is anywhere quite like home. Cathal often finds himself in thoughtful retreat in the rickety corrugated palace, the shed. Described as a dreamer by his girlfriend he can spend hours just thinking, and has become pretty good at it too, he can even do it in his sleep. So gunned with a notepad, and a creative quill I’m guessing growth and success is just over the page.