IN THE BEGINNING
Robert Sidlauskus, the creator of Dready, was an artist and musician from Birmingham. As a Rasta, Rastafarian culture was a major influence on the character Dready. The way he looked, the clothes he wore, the music he skanked to. Dready was not only Robert's name on the street, but rather his alter-ego, and an extension of himself.
Dreadys mixed heritage of Jamaican and British played a huge part in his acceptance of all black and white. He craved peace, love & unity all around him, all the time which remains dominant in Dready’s branding today.A childhood in care fed this craving, and rather than break him, it had the opposite effect. I remember Dready would always make time for anyone, and give you his last pound in his pocket. He was magnetic - with an admirable quest to bring everyone together.Dreadys ethos is simple - to spread peace, love and unity.
"Dready got a job to do"
We all have a duty to find the best solutions to fashion, therefore sustainable and ethical practices are our priority. How something is made, the treatment of the workforce, nothing should be overlooked.
We don’t do fast fashion, a quick buck and ignore the consequences. It’s not our style. We maintain the highest possible standards that the market allows us to. To reach our sustainable objectives, our final goal is to manufacture using hemp. Transforming the by product into thread and woven into durable and sustainable UK cloth. Watch this space on that one.We want Dready fans to treasure our clothing, and they do, which is why some of our fans are still wearing Dready 30 or 40 years later. From humble beginnings in the 1980s, the clothes are still being worn and shared, with second generation Dready fans reaching out to us letting us know they’re wearing their dad's favourite 90’s hoodie. Those messages make our day.Spreading across generations, Dready never went away, and in 2010 Robert (my husband), and I (Victoria) took over the ownership of the brand. Myself being the daughter of Chris Carpenter, the brand owner, I knew the business inside out. I was initiated into Dready life as a child. At music festivals I would be sent off with an instruction to not come back until I had sold all my huge bundle of whistles, that hung red, gold and green laces. My dad would fly a rasta flag off the top of his tent, as a beacon for me to find my way home. In my early 20s I ran the shops, travelling around Europe organising trade shows and visiting distributors.
In 2020 lockdown hit, so Robert kept himself occupied with the huge task of archiving all accumulated and scattered artwork. A disaster became a bonus. During this period we also met two like minded creatives, Anthony and Sheilah Cooper, the owners of classic 90’s brand, Have A Nice Day. They had stocked Dready in the 90’s and had a mission to revive other 90’s brands so we joined forces, took Dready back to basics and revisited all the best sellers, so we are bringing back all the favourites, as well as new characters, such as Sista, which will be the female focused clothing brand.
Dready has its roots in music, especially reggae. Dready was a musician as well as an artist. At Glastonbury, Dready would have pride of place, flying the flag bang next to the reggae tent. Back then before the shops, we would sell at music festivals across the UK and Europe. There were fewer festivals, so each one was a gathering of all the different tribes. Fashion was also different, and people weren’t so multi-tribe as they are today. You stuck to your tribe and that was who you were. What you looked like, the music you listened to. It was your culture, and music and fashion was how you expressed that.Through the ages though I have seen Dready become a multi-tribe community. It has always been seen as a rebel brand, and so growing up, I saw goths, hippies, bikers, skinheads and dreads wear Dready with pride. We are in the process of releasing music, and already sponsoring skateboarders. This is because we want to give back to the music, and also expand our community. We are one of few Rastafarian brands in the world, and it's time we played a bigger part and helped our culture's awareness.
Calling all Raggamuffins, Rudeboys & Rastas, get ready DREADYS BACK!!
Peace & Love,