Many clothing styles and brands have risen into prominence due to the influence of hip-hop culture. According to this blog post, Hip-hop started as a subculture, and it has now become the most common force in the entire pop culture. It was born as a direct reaction to the disco culture.
DJ Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, and Wizard Theodore are among the first founders of hip-hop. They started their practice using turntables as an extension of breakdance on soul and funk records. That created an ideal sound loop for endless dance.
The Early Years of Hip-Hop
Breakbeat is the backbone of hip-hop music. Different instruments and tracks have been incorporated into the original piece to transform it into something more extraordinary. Rhythmic rapping was delivered from capping practices where two individuals could compete over the microphone to win the audience.
The components of early-day hip-hop culture included breakdancing, writing, DJing, graffiti, and writing.
Hip-hop photographers like Henry Chalfont, Martha Cooper, and Jamel Shabazz documented the rise of hip-hop culture in New York. Boys and girls could wear Adidas tracksuits and straight-legged denim.
Custom T-shirts were also less advanced than what we see today. During that time, artists used Adidas Superstars or the Puma Suede sneakers to customize the fat laces. Cazal sunglass and Kangol bucket were also common.
During winter, leather blazers or shearling coats were preferred. Chains and jewelry were used to complement looks, and they have been a pathognomonic feature of hip-hop artists.
Layered chains, bally shoes, and the Kangol hats were adorned by hip-hop singers back in 1985. That outlook was used to separate rock-and-roll predecessors from the hip-hop artists. Ironically, a significant portion of hip-hop uniforms is linked to drug dealers. That is because you had to go through Daniel Day to find the attire.
He later changed his name to Tenor Man Dan and opened a boutique in 1982 for luxurious brands such as Gucci, Vuitton, Fend, and MCM. He repurposed them into bomber jackets, puffy-shouldered coats, and tracksuits. Dan’s boutique served prolific hip-hop artists for ten years before it was shut down in 1992 due to violation of copyrights.
Hip-Hop and Its Influence on Fashion
The hip-hop culture has gone beyond the appreciation of European Fashion producers like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Gucci. Footwear brands like Adidas and Nike were among the important uniform of hip-hop style. As hip-hop evolved, the sneaker culture was adapted.
Every hip-hop rapper has been in the spotlight to dress better on every hit. That has brought a diverse impression of fashion and streetwear that we see today. Many have adjusted to wearing oversized eyeglasses and the immortalized Air Jordan sneaker or African print shorts.
The 20th century and early 21st century were marked as the streetwear period full of urban brands. Custom T-shirts were also used to complement the real moment of hip-hop culture.
NBA players jumpstarted another era of athlete style among the hip-hop artists. The world’s famous hip-hop artist, Kanye West, overcame the barriers that blocked the hip-hop industry from acquiring high-fashion products.
Tailored garments and designer collaborations have so far been the capsule of collections worn by hip-hop singers. Italian fashion has been brought into the house, and Japanese sportswear has not been left behind.
The footwear and fashion aspects have been influenced heavily by the hip-hop industry. It has undergone a notable transformation over time, and we can still expect to see more changes that suit the modern-day lifestyle of hip-hop artists and enthusiasts.