Another style journey begins: Welcome to L.A.!
The city ‘of Angels’, pioneer of influential trends and styles, even today. Streetwear born here is strongly influenced by the sunny streets bordering the ocean, youth subcultures and extreme sports.
L.A., first half of the 1980s. Shawn Stüssy is a surfer and surfboard shaper from the Laguna Beach region of California. His life is divided between riding waves and shaping surfboards, which he creates for friends and the local surfing community.
In 1980, he put his surname’s stylized signature on some t-shirts with colourful prints, which reflected the relaxed and cheerful mood of L.A. so much that they literally sold like hot cakes. Just three years later, in 1983, Shawn opened his first Stüssy-branded shop on Brea Avenue in the West district, immediately becoming a reference point for streetwear fashion throughout California.
Mixing skate, surf, punk and hip-hop music with urban style, the brand creates a unique and inimitable identity by incorporating elements of street art, such as graffiti lettering, psychedelic graphics and pop culture references. His goal is to create a brand that reflects the energy, rebellious attitude and individuality of the skate and surf community.
The combination of these influences gave birth to Stüssy’s distinctive style and defined what would become the identity of Los Angeles streetwear, which, over the years, would be interpreted in different variations and styles, but the matrix would always remain Shawn Stüssy’s brand.
After him, other brands were born in the city that would make a name for themselves in the Olympus of streetwear: in 1989, Freshjive was founded by Rick Klotz, considered a pioneer in the development of street culture-inspired clothing; in the 1990s, with the spread of East Coast hip-hop, fundamental brands such as FUBU, founded by Karl Kani, and Sean John were born, taking the concept of urban fashion to new, unexplored levels, transforming streetwear into a mass phenomenon.
In the 2000s, streetwear in Los Angeles developed its style and identity: we see the growth of brands such as Undefeated, The Hundreds and Diamond Supply Co., which manage to capture the essence of the city’s energy and attitude in their bold aesthetic.
A key aspect of streetwear born in Los Angeles is its ability to fuse of cultural influences: the city is a melting pot of ethnicities, cultures and subcultures, and this is especially reflected in the street style. The multiculturalism and diversity of Los Angeles has contributed to the creation of a style characterised by a fusion of many elements, which contribute to a wide variety of sub-genres and an eclectic identity.
Aesthetically, it is recognisable by its use of bright colours, bold patterns and eye-catching, often provocative graphics.
Compared to other major cities around the world, Los Angeles streetwear differs in its more relaxed aesthetic; while cities like New York and Tokyo may be associated with more sophisticated and avant-garde streetwear, Los Angeles has a more informal and casual approach, thanks to a life spent at the beach, sun and parties: the free and rebellious lifestyle is reflected above all in the style.
Founded in 2015 by Alex James, Pleasures is a streetwear brand known for its provocative approach and bold graphics. The brand is known for exploring controversial and socially relevant topics through fashion.
Founded by Shawn Stüssy in 1980, Stüssy is one of Los Angeles’ pioneering streetwear brands. Known for its distinctive logo and laid-back, informal approach to fashion, Stüssy has significantly influenced the development of streetwear globally.
founded by renowned professional basketball player Russell Westbrook in 2017, the L.A.-based streetwear brand reflects Westbrook’s aesthetic and creative vision through the use of bold graphics and sophisticated designs.
The name “Honor the Gift” literally means to appreciate the opportunities life gives us and to honour individual talents and passions. HTG aims to combine style and meaning, seeking to inspire people to pursue their dreams and live with authenticity.
Founded in 2002, Undefeated is a streetwear brand with roots in sports culture, particularly sneakers culture. Known for its collaborations with major sports footwear brands and bold designs, Undefeated has gained a loyal following.
Founded by Bobby Kim (Bobby Hundreds) and Ben Shenassafar (Ben Hundreds) in 2003, The Hundreds combines elements of streetwear, surfing and skate. The brand is known for its distinctive graphics and collaborations with artists, musicians and other brands.
Created by Nick Tershay in 1998, Diamond Supply Co. initially became famous for producing skateboards and skate accessories. Over the years, the brand has expanded its offerings, becoming a staple in Los Angeles streetwear, known for its bold designs and distinctive diamond logo.
Founded by Rhuigi Villaseñor in 2015, RHUDE has quickly gained attention for its mix of elements of streetwear luxury and vintage. The brand creates impeccably cut garments with a touch of elegance, inspired by the designer’s personal experiences.
Created in 2014 by a collective of artists and designers, Brain Dead is a brand that defies convention and combines fashion with street art. Their collections often feature eccentric graphics and unconventional designs.
Our adventure through the sunny streets of Los Angeles comes to an end here. We’ve retraced the roots of streetwear culture, looked at the stylistic signature that distinguishes its street style from others, and mentioned the most famous brands born in the “City of Angels“.
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