Five Top Streetwear Brands
What is streetwear?
Streetwear is a thriving industry, but breaking into the scene is not an easy task. Although streetwear is difficult to define, it is basically a genre of contemporary clothing that is a cross between sportswear and military looks. Streetwear appeals to a plethora of subcultures. It is worn by skateboarders, wakeboarders, snowboarders, surfers, sports fans, hip-hop artists, sneakerheads, and the young and old alike. Streetwear is constantly evolving. It is influenced by what is currently happening "on the streets". It is centered on comfortable clothing like jeans, t-shirts, baseball caps, and sneakers. Originally created to call out the higher priced "mall fashion" designers, streetwear has morphed into something that has made it into the high fashion industry it originally rebelled against. Sometimes streetwear is known as "urban clothing".
Who are the leaders in the streetwear industry?
One of the standards by which streetwear companies are judged is not only by how famous one piece of clothing is but by the longevity of the company itself. In such a competitive market those who last are deemed the most powerful in the streetwear industry.
Some of those leaders in the industry are:
Diamond Supply Co
Diamond Supply Co.
In 2012 Nick Diamonds went from just another skate brand on the world famous Fairfax Drive to one of the most popular labels in the streetwear industry. Now Diamond Supply Co is recognized all over the world and is a company with some real street cred. Originating in San Francisco, Diamond Supply Co blew up when they moved to Los Angeles and expanded their porducts to a full line of skateboards and accessories. They now sponsor more than 100 of the best skateboarders in the world.
Whenever designer Virgil Abloh releases a new item it is sold out instantly. His ties to rappers like Kanye West, Wiz Khalifa, Chris Brown and Jay-Z have greatly influenced his popularity and have helped make his brand an overnight sensation. It’s too early to tell if his brand will last but there certainly is a lot of demand for it now. The brand is very expensive and is sold only in exclusive shops like the RSVP Gallery and other high end web shops. The Pyrex Vision champion gym shorts is their original creation and most popular item.
Founded by Keith Hufnagel, Huf has become popular in American and internationally. Huf has had collaborations with companies like Converse, Nike, and Jansport and now has a full sneaker line. Year after year, the label puts out solid offerings like its near-ubiquitous "Plantlife" socks and caps. Huf puts out a solid skater line instead of bending with the trends which is one reason it has maintained its longevity.
One of the biggest companies in streetwear with a cult following is The Hundreds. Co- founders, Ben and Bobby Hundreds have a large Internet following as well as a strong presence coast to coast. One of the unique aspects of their company is the popular blog that Bobby Hundreds writes giving the reader a glimpse into his stream of consciousness. The Hundreds has a huge following on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr too. Recognized the world over by the little bomb logo, The Hundreds has branded themselves well.
The Forest Lab
The Forest Lab
One of the newest and most up and coming streetwear companies out there is The Forest Lab. Specializing in sportswear, they have made their mark in the industry with athletes and celebrities alike. The Forest Lab has been seen on basketball stars like James Harden and Demar Derozan, the boxing legend Floyd “Money” Mayweather, and the legendary Spike Lee and James Franco. Some of The Forest Lab’s designs include superstars like Kobe Bryant, Hanley Ramirez, and Chick Hearn. Bobby Hundreds of The Hundreds recently stated on his Blog that some of their designs are “the best Streetwear t-shirt out right now.” The Forest Lab will be one to watch.
The Forest Lab
Want to learn more about streetwear?
- The 25 Most Powerful People In Streetwear | Complex
Written by Jake Woolf (@_JakeWoolf). Ranking the most powerful people in streetwear.
- The 50 Greatest Streetwear Brands | Complex
Bobby Hundreds lists the 50 Greatest Streetwear Brands.