Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

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Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby 021 Antoine » Sun Aug 05, 2018 8:06 pm

Hi guys.

I'm new to this forum and asking for your help!

I'm am currently collecting surveys, about what people love, hate and what annoys on social networks.
Long story short, It's about off-white, fuckboys and triple s sneakers.

It would be amazing if you could take 5 minutes and tell me how much you agree with some statements I made (in the survey). Essentially, what you love and hate about some Streetwear topics.

This is the link to the survey:
https://goo.gl/forms/tFO6eQQvM0gwuW4o2
https://goo.gl/forms/tFO6eQQvM0gwuW4o2
https://goo.gl/forms/tFO6eQQvM0gwuW4o2

By finishing, you'll get a chance to win a new GUCCI DISTURBIA photobook (2018, Peter Schlesinger).
It would be great, if you could participate, I think for fashion-involved people, it can be quite interesting as well.

THANK YOU.
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Last edited by 021 Antoine on Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:37 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: What do you hate about Streetwear? (Gucci Book Giveaway)

Postby maj » Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:58 am

I hate literally everything about it
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Re: What do you hate about Streetwear? (Gucci Book Giveaway)

Postby 021 Antoine » Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:26 am

maj wrote:I hate literally everything about it

But do you still buy streetwear items or have you completely abandoned it from your wardrobe?
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Re: What do you hate about Streetwear? (Gucci Book Giveaway)

Postby popcorn » Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:24 am

021 Antoine wrote:
maj wrote:I hate literally everything about it

But do you still buy streetwear items or have you completely abandoned it from your wardrobe?

Don't you want more nuance than this? You might image a "streetwear item" as being a $70 Nike running shoe, a $190 high-level Nike account shoe (vapormax, premium editions of air maxes), or an off-white Nike shoe that's almost exclusively available for resale at 3-6x the MSRP ($600 - $1200). You might consider a $12 pacsun graphic tee streetwear, or consider a $100 tee shirt a threshold. Or consider the retail vs. resale dynamic, because "purchasing" a supreme tee shirt can cost you $50 or $1000.

Shouldn't you probe for income level before asking for someone's sentiments vs. purchase patterns? For vanity goods? If you just want sentiments, that's fine, but won't they be mostly negative for people who are precluded from buying?

Who cares what a random sample of people think about something? Why not try to find out why they feel that way? Why not try to understand anything?

Don't you throw your chance at negative or subversive responses by offering a chance at a book of literal Gucci advertisements?
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Re: What do you hate about Streetwear? (Gucci Book Giveaway)

Postby maj » Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:05 am

021 Antoine wrote:But do you still buy streetwear items or have you completely abandoned it from your wardrobe?


i bought a cp company jacket this week. does that count?

negatives of streatware:

* queuing
* fan base
* reselling
* filled with boring people
* class tourism
* boring luxury brands creating products they previously sued people over to attach some form of cultural relevancy to their dying house
* boring lazy middle class teens with tshirt brands
* brands jacking prices up because gideon from sussex is willing to wait for it
* the idea that facebook is a meaningful resale platform
* having to buy clothes instantly

Positives of straitwhere:

* literally fucking nothing as the interesting parts of streitwhere is the cultural significance these garments have by being attatched to certain sub cultures/ activities/ people the consumer thinks they are doing/ part of by purchasing a tshirt.

the cp company jacket is v nice btw
bit boring looking
v good for making me feel like im at the rave but really all i'm doing is getting mad at some kids hitting me with lion, dokka blitz on r6 siege.

@kickingthefly ur in luck
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Re: What do you hate about Streetwear? (Gucci Book Giveaway)

Postby 021 Antoine » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:01 am

popcorn wrote:
021 Antoine wrote:
maj wrote:I hate literally everything about it

But do you still buy streetwear items or have you completely abandoned it from your wardrobe?

Don't you want more nuance than this? You might image a "streetwear item" as being a $70 Nike running shoe, a $190 high-level Nike account shoe (vapormax, premium editions of air maxes), or an off-white Nike shoe that's almost exclusively available for resale at 3-6x the MSRP ($600 - $1200). You might consider a $12 pacsun graphic tee streetwear, or consider a $100 tee shirt a threshold. Or consider the retail vs. resale dynamic, because "purchasing" a supreme tee shirt can cost you $50 or $1000.

Shouldn't you probe for income level before asking for someone's sentiments vs. purchase patterns? For vanity goods? If you just want sentiments, that's fine, but won't they be mostly negative for people who are precluded from buying?

Who cares what a random sample of people think about something? Why not try to find out why they feel that way? Why not try to understand anything?

Don't you throw your chance at negative or subversive responses by offering a chance at a book of literal Gucci advertisements?


Those are good arguments, however, what you are proposing goes more into a qualitative study.

Basically, I want to find out the correlation between scales, say if respondents generally dislike what others post about brands, or if they are annoyed by ads, what is their standpoint, regarding their loyalty or associations towards a brand. (I did not come up with the questions, they are taken from similar researches in different fields).

From my analysis of the responses so far, I can see for example, that a certain perceived overexposure of ANY imagined brand has no negative impact on that brands associations, but a rather negative impact towards the loyalty to the brand.

I should have named this thread just differently, it does not really show what I am actually researching. Thanks again for your feedback!
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Re: What do you hate about Streetwear? (Gucci Book Giveaway)

Postby 021 Antoine » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:05 am

maj wrote:
021 Antoine wrote:But do you still buy streetwear items or have you completely abandoned it from your wardrobe?


i bought a cp company jacket this week. does that count?

negatives of streatware:

* queuing
* fan base
* reselling
* filled with boring people
* class tourism
* boring luxury brands creating products they previously sued people over to attach some form of cultural relevancy to their dying house
* boring lazy middle class teens with tshirt brands
* brands jacking prices up because gideon from sussex is willing to wait for it
* the idea that facebook is a meaningful resale platform
* having to buy clothes instantly

Positives of straitwhere:

* literally fucking nothing as the interesting parts of streitwhere is the cultural significance these garments have by being attatched to certain sub cultures/ activities/ people the consumer thinks they are doing/ part of by purchasing a tshirt.

the cp company jacket is v nice btw
bit boring looking
v good for making me feel like im at the rave but really all i'm doing is getting mad at some kids hitting me with lion, dokka blitz on r6 siege.


good feedback, thank you. for real.

one question tho: do you respect the original say supreme story and the "people and stories in ny" around it? or is it a lot of bs about nothing much?
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby maj » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:57 am

anything remotely cool about a brand which peruses large scale commodification in line modern straetwaer practices (such as supreme) instantly becomes uncool due to being associated with it, while there may be some semblance of emotional/ physical connection to a brand which has expanded to such their size because of their underlying history, it inevitably becomes tarnished. Even those at the centre move on and away from the vision which is sold to the consumer.

you see this with supreme where founding members who defined the style which supreme represents in the marketplace today have left the brand to peruse new, different aesthetic avenues even if connected to a similar underlying story. any story created by "supreme" now is nothing more than a marketing tool by which ever hedge fund/ investor owns them, same with a lot of brands in the scene.

You can see this in other struatwure subcultures as well. football casuals where the people who were wearing cpcompany, adidas, stone island etc in its original fashion have moved away from it

a) because of its commodification, de-legitimising original associations and building new, more commercial ones

b) most importantly, because members themselves decide the direction of the subculture as the clothes are secondary to the actions which make it relevant. as influences within that subculture change and external pressures are in play members move with them. all these old dads lap up eg, albam, universal works etc now. yet you still have the original big house brands associated with the scene trying to sell the "classic vision" of what a casual is, one they previously tried to dissociate with.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby 021 Antoine » Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:36 am

maj wrote:anything remotely cool about a brand which peruses large scale commodification in line modern straetwaer practices (such as supreme) instantly becomes uncool due to being associated with it, while there may be some semblance of emotional/ physical connection to a brand which has expanded to such their size because of their underlying history, it inevitably becomes tarnished. Even those at the centre move on and away from the vision which is sold to the consumer.

you see this with supreme where founding members who defined the style which supreme represents in the marketplace today have left the brand to peruse new, different aesthetic avenues even if connected to a similar underlying story. any story created by "supreme" now is nothing more than a marketing tool by which ever hedge fund/ investor owns them, same with a lot of brands in the scene.

You can see this in other struatwure subcultures as well. football casuals where the people who were wearing cpcompany, adidas, stone island etc in its original fashion have moved away from it

a) because of its commodification, de-legitimising original associations and building new, more commercial ones

b) most importantly, because members themselves decide the direction of the subculture as the clothes are secondary to the actions which make it relevant. as influences within that subculture change and external pressures are in play members move with them. all these old dads lap up eg, albam, universal works etc now. yet you still have the original big house brands associated with the scene trying to sell the "classic vision" of what a casual is, one they previously tried to dissociate with.


I definitely feel the same.

At the same time, there are only so many options of what you can buy. And I still rather buy a t-shirt from a smaller brand or merchandise from a musician than the average forever 21 or Superdry shirt.

Do you think, a brand can remain "cool" by not selling out and keeping the circle small and commercialisation low?
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby maj » Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:17 pm

brands can definitely build an "authentic" and "cool" brand identity regardless of their scale, i just don't think most brands don't bother to do it and are often tempted away by the idea of rapid expansion, or some half hearted, transparent middle ground like a collab or video, as opposed to actually contributing something other than product the the subculture they are linked to or born from.

it's easier to see this on the lower end of the spectrum where small brands in subcultures, who may look near identical, are differentiated on their perception of "authenticity or cool" due to the way they interact with that subculture, be it events, who runs it, products, or media production. it's not impossible for large companies to replicate this but often because of their size and the conditions needed to run a large company they become disconnected from the subculture to organise these projects, as well as the consumer becoming sceptical of them.

outside of streetwear brands like Patagonia do this very well , using their platform to remind their consumers of what their products are for and sponsoring projects which help these ideals in both product and other mediums. it's not a meaningful way like "yeah we're redirecting all our profits into government lobby money on environmental issues to protect the natural environments we hold dear and limiting production and resource usage", but they do enough to keep both ends of their market happy and willing to consume their product and maintain a "cool, authentic image".
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby kickingthefly » Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:13 am

cp/stoney seems quite interesting to me because it seems a whole new generation of waifish club kids picked it up, dont know if that had much to do with marketing? before that i mainly saw it on middle aged away supporters at the emirates (ie prob "OG' casuals).
i would like to use the word rhizomatic here bc i feel no earnest teen discussion is complete without it
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby maj » Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:22 am

Cp company's club links come largely from the acid house era where casuals started to find other pastimes to do on the weekend as opposed to football due to increasing policing, taking large quantities of drugs and going dancing was quite attractive. A lot of football wear such as best company, stone island, cpcompany etc meshed really well with the looks people were wearing to it and was naturally adopted by people outside of football and carried through the emerging dance scenes of the very late 80's 90's and early 00's. Now in the resergence of these looks and interest in this era these jackets are a big prize to lay over your vintage sweatshirt, so its quite organic all things considered although part of the large commodification of this era which is ongoing.

Cp companys marketing department has only just clocked on to the fact people who went game in the early 80s used to wear their clothes however (now it's uncool), so I imagine in 8 years cpcompany will suddenly go "did you know people wore our clothes dancing?!".

Unlike the "switched on whizzes" at Burberry who are now creating "official versions of fakes from the 90's 00's" and publishing "market stall" look books, apparently forgetting they burned a fuck tonne of clothes recently to stop "undesirables" wearing their clothes, much like they sued and burned clothes in the 90's/00's who would of ran the market stalls they're recreating.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby INNIT » Sun Aug 12, 2018 4:32 pm

maj wrote:you see this with supreme where founding members who defined the style which supreme represents in the marketplace today have left the brand to peruse new, different aesthetic avenues even if connected to a similar underlying story. any story created by "supreme" now is nothing more than a marketing tool by which ever hedge fund/ investor owns them, same with a lot of brands in the scene.

a) because of its commodification, de-legitimising original associations and building new, more commercial ones



i cant get behind this. there was never a "real" narrative; that thing you liked when it was more localized was still just a commodity, governed by the same relations as all commodities. it was always relations between people and commodities, and these relations weren't corrupted, they followed the same progression as everything else. all commodities are socially driven, regardless of the scale. its always a narrative of decline, that's the only "authentic" narrative.

also im over shitting on kids for engaging trends. i exhibited the same "boring" behavior in 2008 when i bought my first pair of 511s and thought that i was an indee rawker. the difference now is that our beloved special kid brands are reaching a mass audience. who cares, it was going to happen and the young people will be alright.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby CheerUpBrokeBoy » Sun Aug 12, 2018 9:07 pm

it's stupid to call a brand "inauthentic" for growing and expanding their fanbase when the singular goal of any and all companies is consistent growth. i'm not going to say "you don't hate streetwear, you hate capitalism" because that's hacky and lame, but that's about it. opinions about the authenticity of streetwear brands differ person-to-person and require a much more nuanced analysis

also "[x brand] was only good when LES skaters/gabba ravers/[cosmopolitan, subcultural young people in major urban areas]" is elitist gatekeeping. a family friend of mine likes vlone and new bape but he's a sweet kid who likes cool clothes for the same reason anyone does and the idea of talking down to him the way people on fashion forums shit on certain streetwear brands makes my skin crawl.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby bels » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:21 am

CheerUpBrokeBoy wrote:it's stupid to call a brand "inauthentic" for growing and expanding their fanbase when the singular goal of any and all companies is consistent growth.


That's just corporations innit? Surely supreme didn't HAVE to grow if jebbobbia didn't want it to?

Though obviously all arguments that hinge on 'authenticity' are pretty dubious. How should one become the 'authentic' supreme buyer if not by being a softspoken teen with their parent's money. They need supreme more than anyone.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby rjbman » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:26 am

i mean if demand grows naturally and you don't increase production and / or prices to meet it, you're just getting more people who want your product to get stuck with resale prices, which i would consider far more upsetting than some sort of lost "inauthenticity"
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby bels » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:38 am

Is this streetwear capitalist realism. Become inauthentic through corporate growth strategies or stay small and benefit the reseller class.

Surely there has to be another way.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby rjbman » Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:47 pm

on a streetwear level i'm not sure that i can think of anyone who kept their "authenticity" (keep quotesing it because i'm not sold on it as a valid concept), but patagonia + tnf have done a pretty stellar job of keeping authentic while sustaining extremely growth, would be great to hear thoughts on why that is
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby sagc » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:36 pm

Neither of those brands were ever founded on exclusivity - they can grow as much as they want, but their vision of authenticity is tied into the actual product. As long as they keep making relatively functional outdoor gear, they're 'authentic'. Plus, they're not working in a market that really values authenticity.

Streetwear authenticity, on the other hand, seems to require the company to a) pander to a relatively small subculture and b) actively resist targeting anything outside that subculture. Growth is inauthentic when so much of 'authenticity' comes from that specificity.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby maj » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:56 pm

also "[x brand] was only good when LES skaters/gabba ravers/[cosmopolitan, subcultural young people in major urban areas]" is elitist gatekeeping. a family friend of mine likes vlone and new bape but he's a sweet kid who likes cool clothes for the same reason anyone does and the idea of talking down to him the way people on fashion forums shit on certain streetwear brands makes my skin crawl.

also im over shitting on kids for engaging trends. i exhibited the same "boring" behavior in 2008 when i bought my first pair of 511s and thought that i was an indee rawker. the difference now is that our beloved special kid brands are reaching a mass audience. who cares, it was going to happen and the young people will be alright.


not sure why every streetwear talk devolves into this, also not sure if a direct reply to what i posted.

But to be clear i think it's extremely important to talk about how subcultures, the activities that stem from and inform their growth among the mainstream consciousness. it's also important to acknowledge the people at the centre of these of these communities and how they spread and informed our understanding of what we have now regardless of scale or location. people engaged with these communities on more than an aesthetic level; people within these communities who make products for these subcultures inherently are more interesting than the clothes they choose to wear and often provide answers as to why clothes are chosen over others. from my view the clothes which make up streetwear on an aesthetic level are arbitrary and could be interchanged on a whim, what makes the genre relevant is the cultural underpinnings from dance to skating and so forth. it's why commodification (again not growth or new fans!) by external sources or rapid expansions which are unnatural and divorced from the subculture are a bit shit.

it's cool we all appreciate clothes aesthetically and even on a somewhat emotional and physical level engaging with activities of certain subcultures, but to divorce the conversation of streetwear from that of subcultures is incredibly boring and leaves an empty conversation of a constant want for new content and fresh imagery. i'm not sure if i put any "G A T E K E E P I N G" in my posts, but i'd like any conversation going forward to read it as an appreciation of subculture as opposed to "oh noes teehns r wering mu shoez".

i cant get behind this. there was never a "real" narrative; that thing you liked when it was more localized was still just a commodity, governed by the same relations as all commodities. it was always relations between people and commodities, and these relations weren't corrupted, they followed the same progression as everything else. all commodities are socially driven, regardless of the scale. its always a narrative of decline, that's the only "authentic" narrative.


to me this is reductive, while also missing what street wear/ subculture clothing is about, while everything can be reduced to soniccapitalism.jpg it misses way more interesting discussions which focus on subculture grown brands and their interaction with the marketplace. within subcultures smaller/ home grown brands inherently get popular through who runs them, how they interact with the community, the time at which they exist and their contributions to the subculture. these are narratives which drive consumption for better or worse and to dismiss them as marketing druel ignores how a lot of brands who are respected today got to where they are and why they're held so highly over brands like obey (again wear obey if you want! but from a clothing x subculture authenticity perspective its pretty wank!!).

it's stupid to call a brand "inauthentic" for growing and expanding their fanbase when the singular goal of any and all companies is consistent growth. i'm not going to say "you don't hate streetwear, you hate capitalism" because that's hacky and lame, but that's about it. opinions about the authenticity of streetwear brands differ person-to-person and require a much more nuanced analysis


again not sure why u think i'm stuck on some gate keeping tip, im way more interested and made a far greater point of engaging with cultural context of brands and their relationship to the market. i do not care about the size of their brand, cp company is v cool even though it's a large brand owned by a mega corp, same with stone island. supreme on the other hand was a home grown brand who expanded to some city brokers for some cash, what separates them from the likes of obey. it was not some noble plan to democratise supreme and make it more readily available, but simply commodify it into a true luxury good. you can argue "yes all brands are to expand! that is capitalism!" but it's just blatantly untrue, their are loads of examples where brands stay in house and cater to their corner of the world and remain subculture owned. whether you care about being owned in subculture is a different argument but again, it's all v boring to reduce everything to nihilist capitalist critique.

i mean if demand grows naturally and you don't increase production and / or prices to meet it, you're just getting more people who want your product to get stuck with resale prices, which i would consider far more upsetting than some sort of lost "inauthenticity"


dont see this as an issue tbh, you can look at the trail of brands from the 90's 00's who had huge thriving customer bases, gagging for product but didn't expand massively, as tastes changed and the hype goes away (as it will do with our modern brands) these brands stayed and catered to their customer base and still remain "respected today". brands which did cash out are often seen as a bit whack now.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby INNIT » Mon Aug 13, 2018 3:33 pm

maj wrote:to me this is reductive, while also missing what street wear/ subculture clothing is about, while everything can be reduced to soniccapitalism.jpg it misses way more interesting discussions which focus on subculture grown brands and their interaction with the marketplace. within subcultures smaller/ home grown brands inherently get popular through who runs them, how they interact with the community, the time at which they exist and their contributions to the subculture. these are narratives which drive consumption for better or worse and to dismiss them as marketing druel ignores how a lot of brands who are respected today got to where they are and why they're held so highly over brands like obey (again wear obey if you want! but from a clothing x subculture authenticity perspective its pretty wank!!).



fair enough, i did lapse into a pretty grumpy-old-man marxism which is always super reductive. i'm on board with saying that one narrative is "more real"/better than another. but other strange things have spawned from supreme's growth, like a bizarre resell culture, and though it's annoying it's still interesting and undoubtedly "authentic" in like a historical materialist sense. i also find it very difficult to separate out culture from capitalism, especially when we're talking about subcultures that pivot around buying stuff


i wonder if subcultures even exist anymore? it seems to me that anything local is immediately torpedoed into the mainstream by the internet/other forms of instant communication; do subcultures have the same time to develop and define boundaries and is being "local" now just a bougie fantasy? i bet someone smart talks about this
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby zevolution » Mon Aug 13, 2018 4:18 pm

@INNIT

I think Paul Virilio could be your man if you want to talk about what 'local' means nowadays, but he can be just as reductive and belligerent in his theorizing as anyone else.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby maj » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:59 pm

i also find it very difficult to separate out culture from capitalism, especially when we're talking about subcultures that pivot around buying stuff


i think this to me is what grates me most about a lot of streetwear groups in their current form (and a lot of hobbiest groups which are formed of buying stuff), the consumption of fashion and trends is primary to streetwear in many ways now as opposed to it being an extension of other activities. consuming/purchasing the look/lifestyle good is now the hobby, as opposed to an activity which informs the style decisions (somewhat broad statement but not a blanket statement, neither is it meant as "the good ol days had no consumption!")

i wonder if subcultures even exist anymore? it seems to me that anything local is immediately torpedoed into the mainstream by the internet/other forms of instant communication; do subcultures have the same time to develop and define boundaries and is being "local" now just a bougie fantasy? i bet someone smart talks about this


they most definitely do; are most definitely culminations of previous subcultures re-processed by a younger audience with a wider net of influences, decentralised by the internet but by no means loosely defined.

i remember trying to chase this stuff when i was writing on it at uni but a lot of the people in positions to write about it either have boring (wrong) takes on "they don't exist!! the teens don't know what culture is...something...internet!!" or hyper focus on some tiny group of 5 people and call it an emerging scene. would be interesting to see some good stuff in anyone has any.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby INNIT » Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:49 pm

maybe it would be more generative to phrase it as: "do subcultures exist in the way they were previously understood, prior to the digital age, and how have they changed?"

the ability to tap into virtually any subculture at a whim and steadily appropriate it (via dress, taste, activity, etc.) seems to sower the process of localized development, like the subculture dissipates before its even had time to become cringey on its own terms. i could always buy a supreme tshirt and then skateboard or do whatever supreme is supposed to be about
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Last edited by INNIT on Wed Aug 15, 2018 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby fun_yunchables » Tue Aug 14, 2018 8:05 pm

i think this to me is what grates me most about a lot of streetwear groups in their current form (and a lot of hobbiest groups which are formed of buying stuff), the consumption of fashion and trends is primary to streetwear in many ways now as opposed to it being an extension of other activities. consuming/purchasing the look/lifestyle good is now the hobby, as opposed to an activity which informs the style decisions (somewhat broad statement but not a blanket statement, neither is it meant as "the good ol days had no consumption!")


feel this on many levels and i think this reflects a shift in the societal paradigm as a whole in the age of the internet

why bother investing time into a subculture and learning/developing when you can appear to be situated in it visually (because what else matters on social media)

to draw an analogy to the gourmands/foodie (ugh i hate foodie both as a word and as an idea so i begrudgingly use it), where the appearance of the food (is it instagram-mable or not) matters more now than the actual taste. not to say everything is like this bcos there's a pushback to this idea now (ugly delicious, etc etc), but an overwhelming majority of "trendy" food tends to be this way, where the visual component (analogous to the appearance of the subculture) tends to weigh in heavier than (what I argue to be) the more critical component, the taste

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in any case, i think the nebulous term of "authenticity" unarguably plays a role to some degree of the popularity of a label, and notably the people who are associated w/it (i'm mostly talking abt graphic driven brands bcos things get a little hairier w/ cut & sew brands). i feel like alien workshop as a brand embodies this in its history. the era of metamorphosis with their best team saw rise to the "cool" factor of alien. but once everyone left or got dumped off that team, alien became no longer relevant

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i also find interesting that a brand basically has no control over its image once it grows to a certain size (whether it is intentional or not). i hardly think supreme wants to be associated with 12yr old kids with their parents credit cards, but hey look at what it is now. it's as if the consumer base who may or may not be involved in the subculture define the brand image.

also begs the question to more recent streetwear developments -- how many people who wear brain dead are involved in obscure "outsider" art book/film/music ventures. how many people who wear cav empt listen to esoteric electronic music (on a side note does anyone actually buy c.e. tapes lmk how they are)

(sorry that i keep adding to this LOL it's sorta just a brain dump so maybe not the most coherent)
i just thought about big love and i think it falls under this umbrella too, where i conjecture a significant number of ppl purchased big love merch and nothing else to the point where the big love ig explicitly stated "please don't tag us in ur photo of only a t shirt" at some point
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Re: Overexposure of Streetwear and the Principle of Rarity

Postby WussWayne » Wed Aug 15, 2018 1:39 pm

Just the nature of the platforms people are using to find and interact with these subcultures already precludes them from diving deeper into it. It's hard to have in-depth conversations on instagram or get into something from reading a couple of seemingly regurgitated blurbs every season that name-drop an influence or two but basically just say "Yeah everything they dropped is fresh, coming out on this date" every time, not to mention there's a never-ending supply of stimuli that you even end up forgetting to chase up the name drops. Just being their authentic selves but perceived as a way "less cooler" authenticity like someone pointed above. The "shallow consumerism" could be a good thing because (a) I'm not necessarily opposed to things I like being funded and (b) it's not really a race to see who can quickly get to being "really bout dat lyf and learning the roots". The mere act of purchasing something like say some band tee or whatever means the person has a physical reminder to dive deeper because they'll see it, and they'll get other people who see it reminding them as well, even if it takes 20 years or whatever. Or they may never do it at all. All good.
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