WTAPS combines military style, workwear styling and utilitarian design with street appeal. The unique design and instantly recognisable style of this Japanese favorite has made it a cult favourite. While you’ll find a lot of boxy cuts, loose-fitting hoodies, and baggy cargos, don’t be surprised if there is a Japanese Ivy-League tucked in.
Undercover, a Japanese label, is most well-known for its Nike-collab sneakers. But this brand’s roots go back much further than that. Jun Takahashi’s streetwear brand, a renegade, was an integral part of the cool Ura-Harajuku scene. It was also one of the first labels to make the transition between streetwear and “proper” fashion. Takahashi was heavily influenced from the UK punk scene. This can be seen in Takahashi’s output today in many of its more unusual designs.
Although you may not be able to recall a time when streetwear and high fashion were one and the same thing, The Hundreds can. This LA-based streetwear label was founded in 2003. This one was born in a time when graphic tees were the norm and the idea of a Supreme x Louis Vuitton collaboration would have been as impossible as Donald Trump becoming President. Despite all this madness, The Hundreds continues to do its thing, on its own terms. This is old-fashioned streetwear that’s simple and doesn’t pretend it’s something it isn’t.
Ronnie Fieg, a New York-based sneaker-scene legend, is the king of KITH. The store’s own label, KITH, has been a streetwear phenomenon in its own right, thanks to a steady stream of high-profile collaborations and the odd strange one. KITH has partnered with many brands, including Nike and New Balance as well as less-known ones like Bugaboo or Disney. It’s not just about trainers. KITH also offers a range of apparel, including box-logo hoodies, crews, and all the usual streetwear crowd pleasers.
Brendon Babenzien, who had his start at Supreme, left his position as creative director with a vision of a streetwear brand that would be different. Noah is the result, which can be best described as what Supreme and Polo Ralph Lauren would do if they had a baby. You’ll find the usual suspects: hoodies and caps, logo tees etc. You’ll also find a lot of the unusual. You don’t have to feel guilty about buying preppy items like loafers, rugby shirts, and sports jackets.
Fashion types are most familiar with Comme des Garcons’ avant-garde collections, boundary-testing and bizarre runway shows. It’s all about the bug-eyed logos on T-shirts with crew necks and Converse All Stars. CDG PLAY is the streetwear-leaning side of Rei Kawakubo’s storied Japanese label. It takes pared-back wardrobe basics, and reimagines them with bold branding and offbeat design motifs. You can expect classic pieces such as hoodies and Breton tops, along with T-shirts and Breton tops, all infusing CDG personality.
Cav Empt’s streetwear label is one of the most interesting and original. It has clothing that looks like it came from a future streetwear time machine. This Japanese heavyweight makes streetwear for the thinking man. There’s something to do once the Supreme x The North face and box-logo hoodies have lost their appeal.
Needles, a subsidiary of Japanese fashion house Nepenthes and the brand that gave rise to Engineered Garments is a streetwear-leaning fashion line that continues Japan’s fascination with Americana. The brand’s collections combine American military and traditional western styles. They also remix and modify classic Japanese designs using Japanese textiles. Needles Velour Tracksuits have enjoyed a huge popularity among fashion insiders as well as A-list rappers. The label’s appeal is not likely to be declining, considering that it has been in business since 1988.
Pop Trading Company
Pop Trading Company in Amsterdam was founded as a skate shop that sold a variety of hard-to-find brands as well as other cool items. Pop Trading Company is one of the youngest names on this list, having launched their own clothing line in 2016. Despite its lack of heritage, the Dutch label quickly became one of the most exciting new players in the scene. It is a menswear brand that has been influenced by skateboarding, or a menswear brand that is influenced by skateboarding. We don’t know the answer, and its founders admit it. But, one thing is certain: we support it, regardless of what it is.
Although Palace is the most popular streetwear brand in Britain today, we made our mark in the UK way before Lev Tanju even saw the London skate label. Maharishi is a great example. This brand was Britain’s first foray into streetwear. It was a camo-loving, Asian-inspired and hip-hop-influenced melting-pot. Maharishi was not only a pioneer in style but also had and has a strong focus on fair trade, which is a central part of everything it does. Maharishi was “woke” long before the term “woke” was even a thing. In today’s world, its style and ethos are more relevant than ever.