How Did Street Style Become The Ultimate Fashion Trend?


I have heard that “street style” is now the ultimate fashion trend. But what does that actually mean?- Tamsin, by email

Excellent question, Tamsin! Yes, it has been a mighty changing of the guard at Chateau Fashion, with chic now officially out and dressing like you just fled from a burning-down JD Sports in. I’ll return to that fire issue in a tick.

But first can we talk about Kanye West? Yes, he’s a ridiculous egomaniac with throbbing, desperate neuroses that radiate out of his every utterance. But he’s also a genius among mortals – in the music world. OR SO I THOUGHT.

I admit, I worried when Kanye announced he was branching out into fashion. “Pourquoi, Kanye, pourquoi?” I cried. The path is littered with the corpses of music people who thought they could do fashion because they, like, really love clothes, yeah? For every Victoria BeckhamGwen Stefani and Puff Daddy/Diddy/Whatever, there are a million Chris Kirkpatricks, Lily Allens and Pete Wentzes.

Moreover, the timing somewhat concerned me. As happy as I am for West’s marital contentment, I’ll be honest: I wasn’t entirely certain whether marrying into a family so narcissistic they take selfies while driving one another to prisonwould be so good for West’s already fragile sense of reality. And, frankly, judging from his recent Twitter output I don’t think I was so wrong in my concerns. But about his fashion, it seems I was about as off the mark as the rest of West’s boring critics.

Kanye West’s Yeezy Boost fashion launch - as it happened

The rapper and self-declared creative genius unveiled his first designs for Adidas at New York fashion week. Artist Vanessa Beecroft oversaw and the event was (eventually) “simulcasted” across the globe at 42 theatres

Oh, make no mistake, the Yeezy line is utterly absurd. West is, for some reason, very taken with flesh-coloured Lycra and camel toe (those two things are not unrelated), which I don’t understand and you don’t understand and we don’t need to. What is worth examining, though, has been his endorsement of what I can only describe as “dystopian sportswear”: baggy tracksuit trousers, jumpers with holes in them, sweatshirts with frayed hems. In short, sports clothes that look as if they’ve been in a fire. How I groaned when I first saw this hot mess – only for that hot mess now to be the only look that matters in fashion.

Designers such as Alexander Wang and Riccardo Tisci have been dabbling in “dystopian sportswear” for a while. But the real force behind this trend is Vetements, whose designer, Demna Gvasalia, is both a friend of West and now the creative director of Balenciaga. I’m not going to lie to you, I think Vetements is absurd. With its £880 jeans, £185 T-shirts and £415 hooded sweatshirts, it looks pretty much exactly how I imagine Derek Zoolander’s fashion line would look.

All good in the hood – the fall and rise of the hoodie

And actually, I think this is right. I shouldn’t get every fashion trend – I’m a 37-year-old woman, whose idea of good night involves my sofa and re-runs of Parks and Recreation. Frankly, I’d be worried about fashion if I was on its bleeding cutting edge.

So, no, I don’t get it and I’m not even going to try to explain it. But my main takeaway is how pleased I am that my man West has, once again, proven himself to be on the money. And even if I actually preferred how Kim Kardashian used to dress before her husband started putting her in horrible, weird clothes, the real point here is that West was right and everyone else, including me, was wrong. In your FACE, me!

[By: Hadley Freeman ] [ The Guardian ] [ Read More ]

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