SDCC 2022: Talking With Loungefly Executives Liz DeSilva And Derrick Baca
by Gary Catig
It seems like Funko is taking over all facets of pop culture. They already have a strong presence in collectible figures in addition to acquiring Mondo. They even recently announced they were getting into video games. One other company under their umbrella is the lifestyle brand Loungefly. They are known for fandom inspired accessories and apparel. At San Diego Comic-Con, we spoke with Liz DeSilva, VP Creative, and Derrick Baca, VP of Business Development and Merchandising. The pair were excited to talk all things Loungefly.
Gary Catig: What does it feel like for both of you to be at an actual in-person San Diego Comic-Con?
Derrick Baca: For us, we joined the company about four years ago. So, 2019 was our first San Diego Comic-Con…
Liz DeSilva: With Loungefly.
DB: With Loungefly. So much has changed in the last three years. We had a littler booth and this and that. Funko had owned us by then, but coming to this now. Seeing people in real life. Just seeing how our brand has grown over the past three or four years is phenomenal. Our community is nuts. They are so passionate about our products. Just seeing people wearing our stuff everywhere, it’s inspiring.
LD: It is. Getting to be a part of Funkoville and this amazing town they’ve created here and seeing everyone come through so excited, you couldn’t ask for anything more as a brand. The whole team is so happy to be here and just happy to interact with fans of Loungefly, which is for us the best part. To hear the feedback. To hear how excited people are for all the products.
GC: I’m not sure if any of your reveals are coming out of the Funko panel on Sunday…
LD: We will have reveals actually coming out at [Funko] Fundays on Friday and I think they will be shared out to the public after that.
GC: You talked about getting the fan response about your products and everything. Is there particular franchise that people talk about that they’d like you to work on and create products for?
LD: Sailor Moon. People always want Nintendo. We definitely get a lot of asks on Nintendo. Sailor Moon. What am I missing?
DB: I mean the great part of being a part of Funko is they have almost every license under the sun so we have an opportunity to do a lot. We get a lot of feedback, we do. As a brand, we engage as much as we possibly can. We’re reviewing all those requests and we’re looking at them. We brought back American Tale. You’re not going to see any products from that. It was all fans going “What would be great if there was a Fievel backpack.” We actually listen to that feedback.
GC: It’s about fans but sometimes there are fashion designers who are fans of certain products. Do they ever approach you to do a collaboration with you?
LD: We do a lot of collaborations actually. Recently, we’ve done collabs with artists, like more contemporary artists like Valfre. We have a collection just announced with Lisa Frank, who is like a ’90s sticker queen. We are super open to a lot of collabs. When it comes to fashion, we launched our LF apparel line last year. Now, we’re having all these amazing apparel pieces that people can coordinate with their accessories. We’re definitely open and always looking for fun new partnerships and collab opportunities.
DB: We love non-traditional opportunities. Like I was saying with the last one, we’ve done business with the Biltmore Hotel. Sea World. Kennedy Space Center. Things you wouldn’t expect to pop up, that’s what we love. When we work with an artist or a musician, we’ll go directly to them, not necessarily going to a retailer, and letting them sell on their websites too. We look at business opportunities because we are a brand a little bit differently than a traditional license product that is in the market.
GC: We’re talking about collaborations. Funko has a lot of companies under their umbrella. They just got Mondo. Do you see any partnerships with Funko itself or Mondo in the future?
LD: We currently have partnerships with Funko. One of our exclusives that just sold out actually, is our Stranger Things backpack. It comes bundled with an exclusive Demogorgon Pop! that you can only get here at the Loungefly booth with the bag. We do partnerships with them like that. We also do accessories that we call Pop by LF, which utilizes the amazing art styles of Funko but onto our accessories. We do partner with Funko. We are so excited about Mondo joining the Funko family. While we don’t have anything planned yet, we are hoping there is some kind of Loungefly/Mondo collab coming in the future because we are personally huge fans.