Fashion and Hip Hop

Jack Engel, Feature Editor

When modern Hip Hop began to find its stride in the early 2000s, finding artists wearing the same baggy clothes was easy. Since then, Artists like ASAP Rocky have helped reshape industry clothing. In early 2014, ASAP Rocky began mixing designer clothing with common streetwear. To the common eye, this is very unorthodox, but to fashion experts this was genius. Rocky helped explain this in his hit single “Fashion Killa.” In the song, Rocky exclaims that “Cause everything designer, her jeans is Helmut Lang, shoes is Alexander Wang, And her shirt the newest Donna”. According to the New York Times, Kanye West is one of the early proponents of mixing designer fashion and streetwear with his hit brand Yeezy. The brand idolizes beige colors with modern shoe designs. His first releases of the “Yezzy Boost Trainers” sold over 9,000 pairs in 10 minutes (Via Independent.co.uk). One of the biggest links between fashion and Hip Hop is Virgil Abloh. Virgil is Louis Vuitton’s head creative designer and the founder of the hit streetwear brand Off White. He is thought to be the creator of this trend because of connections with Kanye. Virgil Abloh immediately made a name for himself in the fashion world by being the first African American to debut a clothing line in Louis Vuitton’s 164 year history. Virgil soon pioneered the concept of creating a streetwear brand. The method was very simple, quality over quantity. Virgil would release very few pieces of clothing at high prices because of how rare they were. This caught the attention of big pocketed customers like rappers, the idea of having something that was potentially one of kind was attractive to them. Virgil would advertise his fashion by using big-name models. One of the big models Virgil uses goes by the name “Bloody Osiris”, Osiris is one the first people to have these rare pieces of clothing, once he gets the clothing he advertises the brands with his large posts on Instagram, for three hundred thousand followers to see. Hip Hop will continue to evolve along with the fashion industry, as long as artists like ASAP Rocky keep changing with it.