The rise of high-end streetwear in the last few years has blurred the lines between what constitutes high fashion and street fashion. From humble beginnings as an offshoot of skate and hip-hop culture, streetwear has grown to encompass a wide range of styles and fashions from high to low. To better understand the growth of the high-end brand within this spectrum, Business of Fashion sat down with Virgil Abloh, Marcelo Burlon and Shayne Oliver to pick their brains on where this market is heading. Browse through some excerpts of the interview below and click here for the full read.
The immediacy of the Internet and the instant access to inspiration that platforms like Tumblr can provide have also shaped all three designers. “The Internet helps us be connected to the past and to the history,” says Burlon. “What better way to make something than converge new ideas with something that has history,” adds Abloh.
“It’s one of those funny things: The generation behind it is always gonna try to overthrow the one that’s in front of it. I just hope that we do live up to the James Jebbias and the Shawn Stussys,” says Abloh. “It’s sort of our duty to pick up after the all the streetwear legends. It’s a glimmer. I don’t think it’s real yet.” Abloh declines to reveal Off-White’s current revenue, but says the company is “meeting goals.” Its website currently lists 31 stockists. Burlon’s County of Milan boasts over 250 stockists. Meanwhile, Hood By Air is currently sold at 90 retailers.
Burlon says it’s a combination of high-end product, scarcity, celebrity association (fans of County of Milan include the rappers Pusha T and Drake, as well as NBA player LeBron James) and independent spirit that “make the sense of luxury” — and justify the prices.