Sunderland menswear store Port Independent to launch craft beers and unique artist collaboration collection

An independent menswear store in Sunderland which flies the flag for unique designs is branching into craft beer and artist collaborations.

Wednesday, 30th October 2019, 11:09 pm

Port Independent in St Thomas Street, in the city centre, has built up a strong following in the last five years thanks to it streetwear and vintage clothing which isn’t available elsewhere in the area.

In the latest move forward, the store is launching its first artist collaboration collection, called Maltas X Port Independent, and will be stocking craft beers from independent breweries under the banner Port Bierhaus.

Following a launch event this weekend, Maltas X Port Independent will feature the designs of Matthew Maltas, a fashion student at Sunderland University.

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Port Independent in St Thomas Street

Former St Aidan's Catholic Academy student Matthew, 21, hopes one day to work for an international clothing company like Levi’s. He said: “It’s great to be involved with Port Independent, they are a local company so to be joining them as they grow is very exciting. I did a placement with them a little while ago and they agreed to do a limited run of my T-shirts through their menswear line.”

Co-owner of the store Gerard Purvis, who recently joined forces with store founder Preston Brown, said: “We’re all about supporting independents and creativity and Matthew’s work really fits in with our aesthetic, so we decided to launch a limited edition four-piece collection. Niche pieces are very much part of our business model. People like the fact that they can buy something in here that’s only one of six or eight made.”

As well as stocking independent clothing brands such as Pastels Skatewear, Chained & Able, Redstar and Harbour, the shop is also branching into selling craft beer from independent breweries after obtaining an alcohol licence.

From November 4, shoppers will be able to pick up drinks from the likes of Vaux, Northern Monk and Cloudwater Brew Co.

Sunderland University fashion student Matthew Maltas with his T-Shirt designs from Maltas X Port Independent. Picture: DAVID WOOD

Gerard added: “We’ve hand-picked all the beers and we’re looking to host taster nights in the future. It gives shoppers more of an experience, they can not only pick up a t-shirt for a night out, they can take home a craft beer too.”

Gerard Purvis from Port Independent launching a new craft beer range.
Some of the craft beers which will be on sale at Port Independent