We had the pleasure to have a brief discussion with “sono il factotum!” Craig Hendry, one of the guys behind Britain’s men’s underwear brand Bum-Chums. Even though relatively new, Bum-Chums is best known for their unique designs of underwear, choice of fabrics and possibly most of all for their “Tongue in Cheek” sense of humour that the British seem to think they’ve patented!This simply isn’t the case, and Bum-Chums cheeky, sometimes camp and borderline outrageous humour does indeed translate the world over as the brand continues to strive towards their “mission to rid the world of dull, dreary, sad and saggy men’s underwear” so their site says.

We caught up with Craig ahead of the brand’s release date for their new Autumn-Winter 2015 Collection and asked him some questions about him and his brand. We also caught him in his underwear and we must admit that he looks great!

Men and Underwear: Craig, we know you’re a busy guy and you told us you’re working on the pre-launch of the Bum-Chums new collection. What’s the news for the new AW15 range?
Craig Hendry: Gosh… That really would be telling! Naturally, we like to keep things under close wraps until the big-reveal… Naturally I can tell you that the theme is quite neutral for our brand and it will have some sort of narrative with it, as people have come to expect. The AW15 range and the following releases planned for November are all about “Every Day Wear” pants. We know quite a lot of our underwear is more for occasions, so these are more designed to be your trendy office pair and such.

Men and Underwear: Does that mean an end to bright and bold styles from the brand?
Craig Hendry: Ha… No… Far from it… Honestly, all of the Chums here absolutely love bright and bold; styles and colours, the works, we just adore brightness in our lives! I mean, we live in Yorkshire, England and there’s a saying “It’s grim up North”, so we need all the help we can get!

Men and Underwear: Craig, it’s said that you have a hands-on role within the company? What can you tell us about that?
Craig Hendry: I have to chuckle, as I think about this one. There’s a British Comedy called Little Britain with a character who wants to “write the theme-tune, sing the theme-tune” (and so on) Well, that’s a little of what I do. I started the business on my own a while back and on the way found Chums to join in the fight against saggy-naff pants! I’m lucky I found them really.
I guess I do have a keen hand in things. For one I’m the only designer here at Bum-Chums, I deal with everything from sketches, to making and grading patterns. I also buy in the fabrics and make the production samples myself and then I have a hand in making every single pair we sell! In between working with Anthony here on the website and online presence and the videography and photography.

Men and Underwear: That’s quite a lot of involvement! You don’t model as well?
Craig Hendry: That’s a real interesting one actually. Although I’m really no model; I’m not a pretty boy! I have had a hand in the videos and I’ve been dragged in to a few shots in my pants a couple of times. In fact, I was the “stunt bum-double” in the shower scene of the “Sneak Peek Movie”. There’s a link here to our videos: http://bum-chums.com/pages/bum-chums-video

Craig Hendry posing in Bum-Chums underwear
Craig Hendry posing in Bum-Chums underwear

Men and Underwear: Bum-Chums seem to have quite a range of models, other than you standing in yourself. How important are the models you use to your brand?
Craig Hendry: Our models are so important to us. In fact most of the guys are friends or contacts of the brand, we love people getting involved and as a small, growing brand, we’re so grateful for all the help we can get. We think that using real, every day guys like you and me is vital… I mean, everyone wants to know what our pants look like on a body like our own. Of course we have a brand style! It’s whacky sometimes, but it’s still there!

Men and Underwear: How did you get into making underwear Craig? It’s not something you’ve done forever is it?
Craig Hendry: No it’s not… I used to be in the Security Sector, I worked as a consultant and at university I studied Law, Criminology and Security Management to Masters level! Quite an accomplishment I guess, but I’m really proud of what we do here at Bum-Chums and I gave up that career so we could get this bird off the ground and make British Manufacturing work again. We physically manufacture things in a country where our textile industry was decimated and transported overseas. All of our parts come from people I’ve met and shared a coffee and cookie with, no more than two hours away from our factory. It means a lot to us.

Men and Underwear: What’s up for the future Craig?
Craig Hendry: Well that’s quite an open book really. I mean sometimes here we like to bring out something new just because we can and not so it fits into any real season or collection.
On the other hand, I can tell you that we’ve got our eyes on something really special for next year and we’re already working on that. It’s everything you’d expect from Bum-Chums and bang-on-brand!

Not exactly what we expected here, but certainly an interesting glimpse into the life of an underwear designer and manufacturer we cover greatly here in Men and Underwear blog. For more on Bum-Chums, check out their site at www.bum-chums.com and see what you think of their styles.
We look forward to covering the launch of their new range… The only thing the Chums would tell us is “The Hidden Shall Be Revealed this October 16th and the Dark Shall be Light”!
Stay tuned!

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